From the March, 15 Congressional Research Service report: Coast Guard polar icebreakers perform a variety of missions supporting U.S. interests in polar regions. The Coast Guard’s two existing heavy polar icebreakers— Polar Star and Polar Sea — have exceeded their originally intended 30-year service lives. Polar Star was placed in caretaker status on July 1, 2006. Congress in FY2009 and FY2010 provided funding to repair it and returnit to service for an additional 7 to 10 years of service; the repair work was completed and the ship was reactivated on December 14, 2012. Read More
From the March, 8 Congressional Research Service report titled, New Zealand: U.S. Security Cooperation and the U.S. Rebalancing to Asia Strategy.
As part of its strategy to rebalance toward Asia the Obama Administration has greatly expanded cooperation and reestablished close ties with New Zealand. Changes in the security realm have been particularly notable as the two sides have restored close defense cooperation, which was suspended in the mid-1980s due to differences over nuclear policy. The two nations are now working together increasingly closely in the area of defense and security cooperation while also seeking to coordinate efforts in the South Pacific.
Capt. Kenneth Coleman knows more about the Littoral Combat Ship program than most any sailor. Currently Coleman works at U.S. Surface Forces as requirements officer for the LCS program and from April 2010 to Sept. 2011, he was the commander of the Blue crew of USS Independence (LCS-2). USNI News recently interviewed Coleman on the latest of the deployment of USS Freedom (LCS-1). Coleman discussed manning changes for the ship, how the ships will be maintained while deployed and what it’s like for a ship commander to do his own dishes. Read More
U.S. Pacific Command contractor, Benjamin Pierce Bishop, 59, was charged in federal court in Hawaii on Friday on charges of providing sensitive national security information to a Chinese national with whom he was romantically entangled. Read More
The U.S. Navy is examining low-cost high-speed ships to replace aging surface ships in U.S. Southern Command’s fight against drug traffickers, U.S. 4th Fleet officials told USNI News on Tuesday. Read More
A 60mm mortar malfunction is being blamed for the Monday death of seven North Carolina Marines killed at a Nevada training ground, Marine leaders said on Tuesday. Read More
Seven Marines from the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force were killed in a training accident at Hawthorne Army Depot, Nev. on Monday. Read More
From the March 14, Congressional Research Service report: In order to encourage holistic consideration of national security issues, some members of this inchoate school have called for the use of “unified national security budgeting” (UNSB). To be clear, their goal is not to refine the U.S. federal system of budgeting, but rather to use budgetary mechanisms to drive changes in U.S. national security practices. Within this broad school of thought, various proponents call for the adoption of a number of different approaches, from a single shared funding pool for all national security activities, to mission-specific funding pools, to crosscut displays, to more strategically driven budgeting. In turn, various proponents apparently aim to achieve quite different kinds of change with their proposed remedies—from rebalancing the distribution of roles and responsibilities among executive branch agencies, to saving money, to revisiting fundamental understandings about how U.S. national security is best protected. Read More