Showing posts with label US ARMY. Show all posts
Showing posts with label US ARMY. Show all posts

Thursday, June 30, 2011

101st Airborne...hookin & jabbin & on patrol...

PAKTIKA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Soldiers from Company C, 1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, Task Force Currahee, pull security from the top of a mountain in Paktika Province during Operation Surak Basta III on June 23. The operation was to infiltrate near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border in order to stop enemy fighters from entering into Afghanistan. (Courtesy Photo)

PAKTIKA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Soldiers from Company C, 1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, Task Force Currahee, pull security from the top of a mountain in Paktika Province during Operation Surak Basta III on June 23. The operation was to infiltrate near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border in order to stop enemy fighters from entering into Afghanistan. (Courtesy Photo)

LAGHMAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Daniel Schumacher, an infantry from Dubuque, Iowa, with Company A, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry Regiment, leads a group of Soldiers from the town of Gomerai, Afghanistan, back to Combat Outpost Najil June 15 in Laghman Province, Northeastern Afghanistan. It was one of the final patrols of the deployment for Schumacher, who is wrapping up his fourth deployment. (Photo by Capt. Jason Beck, 210th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment)

LAGHMAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. ArmyPfc. Elisha Bottleman, a machine gunner from Edgewood, Iowa, with Company A, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry Regiment, leads a group of Co. A Soldiers down a hill in Laghman Province, Northeastern Afghanistan, outside Combat Outpost Najil. (Photo by U.S. Army Staff. Sgt Ryan C. Matson, Task Force Red Bulls Public Affairs Office)

LAGHMAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Army 1st Lt. John Dundee, foreground, a platoon leader from Waterloo, Iowa, with Company A, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry Regiment, leads a group of his Soldiers up a hill June 15 outside the town of Dumlum, Laghman Province, Northeastern Afghanistan, outside Combat Outpost Najil. (Photo by U.S. Army Staff. Sgt Ryan C. Matson, Task Force Red Bulls Public Affairs Office)

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Hawaii plays hardball...US Army play nice.

This story from Hawaii perfectly illustrates the issues for the military when it comes to training and the power that environmentalist are using to deny training areas.  To sum it up, Hawaii plays hardball ..and the US Army plays nice even though the state is doing its best to screw them.
The Army is shifting at least some high-altitude helicopter training from Hawaii to Colorado — at a taxpayer cost of up to $11 million — following an additional environmental review imposed by the state.
The regulatory process has already delayed training by four months, creating a tight deadline for Wheeler Army Airfield pilots preparing for a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan in January.
Now Gov. Neil Abercrombie has informed the Army it must conduct a state environmental assessment in addition to a federal environmental assessment to use six existing landing zones high on the slopes of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa.
Read the entire article but if this doesn't highlight the issues with liberal states and military training then nothing will.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Firebird...the US Army's next OV-1 Mohawk?

By the looks of this airplane, it seems to me to be the perfect, modernized, cheaper than dirt OV-1 Mohawk.

I love the way we keep re-inventing wheels to solve problems that have already been solved.  Albeit with fewer sensors but with the same goal in mind.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Whitewash is complete. No Punishment from the loss in Wanat.

Listen to this drivel and weep.  The US Army and the Pentagon has successfully swept this incident under the rug.  Another failure by Brigade and higher Officers in relation to the needs of the men on the ground.  Politicians in uniform, not warriors.  These senior Officers need to be fired, not given the official pat on the back that they received from this report.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Greg Grant of Defense Tech nails it!

Wow, read the whole thing over at Defense TechGreg nails the real reason behind this melt down.

“He was tired of being the victim of what he believes is a concerted effort on behalf of Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry and others to undermine everything he was given 18 months to do. He was tired of being perceived in the press as a neoconservative killer, Dick Cheney’s hired assassin, or disloyal to President Obama and his staff. He was angry at being blamed for leaking the draft of his report to the President to Bob Woodward. (He did NOT leak the document). He was miffed that a large number of mid-ranking soldiers and battalion commanders and enlisted guys didn’t support his strategy.
Commenter Ran corrected my incorrect attribution of the above statement.  Apologizes to all.  Read the comments section to get the relevant information.

Good Riddance.

via FoxNews.

The article says that although McChrystal voted for Obama, the two failed to connect from the start. Obama called McChrystal on the carpet last fall for speaking too bluntly about his desire for more troops.
"I found that time painful," McChrystal said in the article, on newsstands Friday. "I was selling an unsellable position."
It quoted an adviser to McChrystal dismissing the early meeting with Obama as a "10-minute photo op."
"Obama clearly didn't know anything about him, who he was. The boss was pretty disappointed," the adviser told the magazine.
This guy will be fired and I won't shed a tear.  I'll probably pour a shot of Jack Daniels and enjoy the news of his demise.

Good riddance to you, General McChrystal and your rules of engagement.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Army Chief of Staff wants lighter GCV.

via Defense News.
Gen. George Casey said he thinks the future replacement for the Bradley Fighting Vehicle needs to be much lighter than the estimated 70 tons program officials are projecting that the new GCV will weigh. 
"I keep saying, 'Look, man, an MRAP [mine-resistant ambush-protected] is about 23 tons, and you're telling me this is going to be 70 tons, which is the same as an [M1] Abrams. Surely we can get a level of protection between that, that is closer to the MRAP than it is the M1,' " Casey said June 7. "It's not going to be a super heavyweight vehicle."
Casey's comments come less than a month after Army Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Peter Chiarelli said at the Armor Conference at Fort Knox, Ky., that the GCV would weigh 50 to 70 tons.
After we all said WTF!  a 70 ton IFV, it seems that the Army Chief of Staff is walking this cluster back.  Good for him.  If the US Army actually stayed with a 70 ton IFV, then the USMC would be doing all the fighting ...well the USMC and the 82nd....

Casey might have just saved his service.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Infantry Gear.

One of the issues that will face the ground forces when the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan finally wind down is that money that has been going to make sure that our Infantry is the best and most lavishly equipped in the world will go away.

That is one (of only a few) good things to come out of these conflicts.  The advancement in gear tech has been ... stunning.

ADS Inc. is a 'clearing house'...a one stop shop if you will, of gear that units can make purchases from without going through the headache of tracking down each individual vendor.

Which leads to another unforeseen economic shock that will be hitting soon so enjoy the wide variety while you can.  Fewer personnel and smaller budgets will mean that many of the companies highlighted in the brochures below won't be around.

Army Catalog Vol3 Lores 0709                                                                    

LCAC vs. the Ground Combat Vehicle.

Riedel Ship to Shore Connector                                                            

The good people at the Marine Corps Sea Basing Website are stressing the importance of the Sea Base being able to support not only Marine Corps Units but also US Army Combat Brigades and Allied Forces.

But Houston, we have a problem.

The Ground Combat Vehicle or for that matter the next generation Stryker/Bradley A3 will strain our current and interim Ship to Shore Connector...the LCAC.

The LCAC's are in the middle of a service life extension and are due to serve for another 10-20 years until the Navy gets around to replacing them.

The problem is this.  The LCAC is capable of carrying 74 tons at 35 knots over a distance of 25 nm or greater (pg 7 of the brochure).

That means that carrying the future Ground Combat Vehicle will be the equivalent of moving a Main Battle Tank for every sortie.  And with the future growth in weight of the Stryker and Bradley (once the Army gets around to recapitalizing it!) will place the Bradley close to the 35-40 ton range and the Stryker close to the 30 ton threshold.  Similar in weight to the EFV----but those systems can't swim!.

The US Army Heavy Brigade Combat Teams and to a certain extent the Stryker Brigade Combat Teams (the middle weight force) are moving away from use in the Assault Echelon.  Before I hear howls of protest understand that the HBCT or the SBCT were not to be part of the first wave but were to be launched in a non-permissive environment.

With current vehicle growth they will be too heavy to move in any environment except one thats highly permissive---this also means that it will have to be an administrative movement---not combat.

Weight is going to be an issue and might keep the Army on the sidelines in the future.  Its obvious that the Army isn't taking into account strategic mobility or employment in their future vehicle force structure.  Infantry will once again rule ----whether Airborne, Air Assault, or Ranger---every other part of the Army force will be too heavy to get into the fight. 

The US Army has virtually discarded what they called "Light" Infantry -read that to mean  Non-Airborne or Air Assault Infantry formations.

They're either Heavy or Stryker.  That means that the US Marine Corps will have to bear the burden of the fight if conflict erupts in Jungles....heavily urbanized areas or even in the arctic.  The 82nd or the 101st can deploy and fight as Light Infantry but they are tasked organized for short duration missions (especially the 82nd).  They aren't formed or equipped to last more than a couple of days in an active combat zone without support.

Monday, June 07, 2010

Mobility vs. Survivability.

Major Hat Tip to Jonathan.

DefenseNews has an outstanding article on the direction of future Infantry Fighting Vehicle development in the US.  Read it here.
After years of fighting side-by-side in MRAP armored vehicles, the U.S. Army and U.S. Marine Corps are striking out in different directions.
The Army is making vehicle and crew survivability its main priority in its Ground Combat Vehicle (GCV) program, while the Marine Corps is determined to reclaim its role as an expeditionary force that relies on lighter vehicles that can quickly be transported around the world.
The diverging paths return the two services to their definitional roles, but they also represent fundamentally different perspectives on how forces should fight - and could undercut the services' joint effort to build a replacement for tens of thousands of Humvee utility vehicles.
"We need to get lighter," Lt. Gen. George Flynn, commander of the Marine Corps Combat Development Command, told reporters June 3 at the Pentagon. "And sometimes, when you look at your vehicle strategy, you have to take a look at the environment that you're going to operate in. There's a protection that comes from mobility. If you can move fast and if you can move on unpredictable routes, you can not necessarily armor up as much."
The Army, on the other hand, has set very aggressive protection requirements for its GCV, which is now expected to be tracked and weigh 50 to 70 tons.
There's really no way around 50-plus tons when a vehicle has to carry 12 soldiers, have a gun turret, and accept upgradable armor as IEDs get better, said one source familiar with the program.
Critics point out that at 70 tons, the GCV would be the heaviest infantry fighting vehicle in existence - as heavy as the Abrams tank.
This whole issue is fascinating.

A couple of points.

1.  This is more proof that the Stryker concept is dead.

2.  The US Army is serious about fielding an Infantry Fighting Vehicle that will weigh MORE than a LeClerc Main Battle Tank!

3.  The EFV will be much smaller and lighter than the projected Army vehicle.  There is no way that this currently planned....can be joint.  At one time Army officials stated that they would consider the EFV for this requirement.  That didn't last long.

4.  Wow.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Wonder what happens when you use a .50 cal round as a rock?

Follow this link.  Warning, extremely graphic. 

Major Hat Tip to the Firearm Blog.

PS.  Recruiting standards are definitely going down.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Afghan Raid.

Unit unidentified.  Interesting though.  Multicam but no unit patches.  Working with Afghan National Army---AND---they have two three combat camera men along for the ride!  I wonder if they were documenting as well as covering this action?
Members of an Afghan-international security force prepare to exfil after searching a compound and detaining two suspected militants in Logar province, Afghanistan, May 24. (U.S. Army photo by Spc. Daniel Maffett)
Members of the Afghan-international security force pull security on a compound in Kudeza in the Zharay district, Afghanistan, May 28. (U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Christian Palermo) 
A member of an Afghan-international security force pull security on a compound in Kudeza in Zharay district, Afghanistan, May 28. (U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Christian Palermo) 
A member from the Afghan-international security force searches a room in Lashkar in the Nahr-e Saraj district, Afghanistan, May 31. (U.S. Army photo by Spc. Bao Huynh)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

New US Army Tug Boat.

United States Army Vessel Col. Seth Warner moored in port at Kuwait Naval Base, Kuwait.
Date: 05.29.2010
Posted: 05.29.2010 05:45
Photo ID: 284274
VIRIN: 100529-O-9999P-001
Location: Kuwait Naval Base, KW

Stats via
MGen. Nathanael Greene class large coastal tugs (6 ships)

Displacement: 924 tons full load
Dimensions: 128 x 36 x 16 feet/39 x 11 x 4.9 meters
Propulsion: 2 diesels, 2 shafts, 2,550 bhp, 12 knots
Crew: 24
Notes: A new class of large tugs built for US Army service, primarily intended to assist in docking of transports.
Builders: Hulls of LT 801-805 and components of LT 806 by Robert E. Derecktor, Middletown, RI; all completed by Trinity/Halter Marine, Moss Point, MS.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Your new wallpaper.

This photo had to be staged.

A Special Forces Soldier provides security for inbound aircraft after completing a cordon and search of a suspected bomb making facility at a remote village in the Arghandab District Dec. 10, 2009.
Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force – Afghanistan Media Operations Center
Photo by Sgt. Debra Richardson


US Army goes from observing K-Max for Marine service to participating?

When the US Marine Corps first came out with a requirement for an unmanned helicopter to perform resupply missions for dispersed units, the Army stated that they would observe the program.  Seems like they've moved from observation to almost participation...this from
“Under the contract, Kaman Helicopters will be adding mission equipment to a test aircraft that helps elevate the reliability of unmanned aircraft to the standards the K-MAX attains in commercial operations,” stated Terry Fogarty, general manager, Unmanned Aircraft Systems Product Group for Kaman Helicopters. “While this is not a deployment contract, it continues our efforts as we prepare for a potential opportunity for a military deployment later this year.” Kaman’s commercial operators boast 98-99 percent availability rates in the harsh helicopter logging environment, where K-MAX rotorcraft deliver 6,000 pound loads 20 to 30 times per hour. A single K-MAX often moves more than one-million pounds of timber in a single day, and has exceeded two-million pounds in a single day on numerous occasions.
I wonder if they just tipped their hand on who the Marine Corps has selected for this mission.  It would make little sense for the Army to select a different helicopter than the Marines (at least in this role) in this age of austerity.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

M26 Modular Accessory Shotgun System

I find this little shotgun fascinating.  It really seems like another example of re-inventing the wheel.  The Super Shorty seems to be handier, holds only one fewer round and would only have required attachment hardware for under weapon use.  Nevertheless, check out this fact sheet and follow the link to the Firearm Blog for more information. 

PEO Soldier's Small Arms Dump.

PEO Soldier has been kind enough to provide a photographic over view of Army weapons.  These are the most interesting.

The M26 Modular Accessory Shotgun System (MASS) provides Soldiers with
a 12-gauge shotgun accessory attachment with lethal, less-than-lethal and
door-breaching capabilities.

The M192 provides a lighter weight, low-profile mounting platform for the M249 and M240 for controlled, sustained, and accurate fire at extended ranges.

The M320 Grenade Launcher enables Soldiers to accurately engage the enemy in daylight or total darkness with a safer more reliable grenade launcher. Much more over at their site. Check them out.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

XM25 explained.

Hat-tip to Tactical

I don't know who that is that's giving the briefing on this weapon system but I do know that their is no way in hell this can be used under the current rules of engagement.

If an enemy soldier is spotted shooting from inside a building, you are not allowed to return fire against the building.  You can engage the shooter.  Do whatever it takes to time him up and hit him but you cannot target the know the worry about civilian casualties and all that.

With that being said I can't see the joy the Army has in fielding this weapon.  Its a lawyers dream and a soldiers nightmare.

This has pre-trial confinement written all over it.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Utter BS.

Hat Tip to Jonathan for this story.

A journalist, because he lacks knowledge of firearms has filed a false and misleading story.  Read it here.  A tidbit for your amazement.

KABUL, Afghanistan — The U.S. military's workhorse rifle — used in battle for the last 40 years — is proving less effective in Afghanistan against the Taliban's more primitive but longer range weapons.
As a result, the U.S. is reevaluating the performance of its standard M-4 rifle and considering a switch to weapons that fire a larger round largely discarded in the 1960s.
The M-4 is an updated version of the M-16, which was designed for close quarters combat in Vietnam. It worked well in Iraq, where much of the fighting was in cities such as Baghdad, Ramadi and Fallujah.
But a U.S. Army study found that the 5.56 mm bullets fired from M-4s don't retain enough velocity at distances greater than 1,000 feet (300 meters) to kill an adversary. In hilly regions of Afghanistan, NATO and insurgent forces are often 2,000 to 2,500 feet (600-800 meters) apart.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Told ya so!

This from Defense Tech.  Go to their site for the whole story.
Yet, Pentagon sources tell DOD Buzz that planners aren’t just looking at cutting tail, serious cuts in tooth are also being considered. Specifically, cutting Army and Marine force levels back to where they were before Gates boosted the land forces in early 2007 by 92,000; 65,000 additional soldiers and 27,000 more Marines.
This was an easy prediction.  After every major conflict the USMC has contracted sharply.  These wars will not be an exception.  Expect even deeper cuts than those talked about in the article.  I'm thinking that the US Marines will fall to an end strength of about 150-165,000.