The Intersect
Nov. 9, 2010

Gates: Congress should welcome defense efficiencies
American Forces Press Service
U.S. Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates expressed confidence that the new split-party Congress will support his efficiency initiatives, while expressing hope the lame-duck Congress will pass the new arms reduction treaty and repeal the law prohibiting gays and lesbians from serving openly in the military.More

Mental health visits rise as parent deploys
The New York Times
Young children in military families are about 10 percent more likely to see a doctor for a mental difficulty when a parent is deployed than when the parent is home, researchers are reporting in the most comprehensive study to date of such families' use of health insurance during wartime.More

Government, military broaden offensive against PTSD
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Record numbers of veterans from the Afghanistan and Iraqi wars are suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder because the conflicts are the longest combat operations in America's history and they contain elements that provide fertile ground for fermenting the condition. There are no front lines of battle, making no place safe — not even the so-called Green Zones. Troops are being redeployed for two, three or more tours of duty, causing soldiers to be exposed over and over to these intense situations. And unlike in prior wars, women are being exposed to combat situations in which they are attacked and must fight back.More

Department of Veterans Affairs adds services for 3 agent orange related diseases
News Junky Journal
After adding Parkinson's disease, B-cell leukemia, and ischemic heart disease to its list of diseases that qualify veterans that were exposed to Agent Orange for medical services, in early November the Department of Veterans Afairs began distributing payments to veterans who suffer from these diseases. Agent Orange was an herbicide used during the war in Vietnam to clear the landscape by defoliating the jungle. Over the years a long list of health related problems have been associated with coming into contact with the chemicals used in the defoliant.More

Military veterans look for right fit in civilian work force
The Sacramento Bee
David Brabec of Yuba City, Calif., separated from the Army National Guard in April. The young military policeman has been looking for work since, waiting, he said, for a door to open. Coast Guard member Ute Kavanaugh returned to Roseville, Calif., and an IT job in August after she wrapped up a tour of duty in Kuwait. But she is concerned about outsourcing "so I'm trying to be proactive to see what employers need and what I can offer."More

Innovation must not be lost in DoD efficiency push
The Department of Defense recently released its latest salvos in the battle to retain excellence through more efficient resource management. While changes to how DoD acquires goods and services are a crucial part of this effort, officials should also focus on ensuring that industry remains incentivized to produce what the department needs to successfully prosecute future missions. This may seem like an obvious task, but in practice it has proved vexing. DoD has frequently struggled with how to best tap innovative market forces, and the imperative for doing so is only becoming stronger. This is in part because tightening budgets will drive DoD to maximize its leverage in commercial investments.More

F-35 delays speed up UAV development
The Strategy Page
Unable to buy new aircraft designs (because they are too expensive, or simply take too long to get into service), and facing the prospect of unmanned aircraft (UAVs) displacing more and more manned ones, the American military is spending a growing chunk of its budgets on upgrading and refurbishing the combat aircraft they already have. This was not a deliberate, long term plan, but simply a reaction to shortages of new aircraft. A lot of the new electronics and weapons involved in these upgrades can also equip UAV designs still in development, so such efforts are a double win.More

Indian Air Force's C-17 deal will create jobs in US
The Economic Times
A powerful American Senator has welcomed the C-17 aircraft deal announced by the Indian Air Force, a development which is expected to create more than 22,000 jobs in the United States. "The purchase of 10 C-17 aircraft represents a great investment in Connecticut's defense industry. This agreement strengthens our relationship with India's robust economy and supports defense jobs at Pratt & Whitney's locations, giving Connecticut's economy a much needed boost," Senator Christopher Dodd , who represents Connecticut in the U.S. Senate, said. More

Army service rifles getting big upgrades
Stars and Stripes via
Calling it "the biggest overhaul of service rifles in nearly 50 years," the Army soon will send Soldiers to Afghanistan with new M4A1 carbines. Upgrades to the M4 include a more resilient barrel, ambidextrous controls and a full-automatic setting. Add better ammunition, and Soldiers will have a more lethal weapon to fight insurgents, according to Program Executive Office Soldier, which introduced the improvements.More

National Guard (In Federal Status) and Reserve Activated as of Nov. 2, 2010
U.S. Department of Defense
This week the Army, Navy and Air Force announced a decrease in activated reservists, while the Marine Corps and Coast Guard announced an increase. The net collective result is 1,364 fewer reservists activated than last week. At any given time, services may activate some units and individuals while deactivating others, making it possible for these figures to either increase or decrease.More