Category Archives: MILITARY

JERUSALEM AND EAST JERUSALEM

Jerusalem or Eastern Jerusalem (Arabic: القدس الشرقية‎; Hebrew: מזרח ירושלים‎) is the sector of Jerusalem that was occupied by Jordan in 1948 and had remained out of the Israeli-held West Jerusalem at the end of the 1948–49 Arab–Israeli War. It includes Jerusalem’s Old City and some of the holiest sites of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, such as the Temple Mount, Western Wall, Al-Aqsa Mosque, Dome of the Rock and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, as well as a number of adjacent neighbourhoods. Israeli and Palestinian definitions of it differ;[1] the Palestinian official position is based on the 1949 Armistice Agreements, while the Israeli position is mainly based on the current municipality boundaries of Jerusalem, which resulted from a series of administrative enlargements decided by Israeli municipal authorities since the June 1967 Six-Day War. Despite its name, East Jerusalem includes neighborhoods to the north, east and south of the Old City, and in the wider definition of the term even on all these sides of West Jerusalem.

During the 1948 Arab–Israeli War, Jerusalem was contested between Jordan and Israel, and on the cessation of hostilities, the two countries secretly negotiated a division of the city, with the eastern sector coming under Jordanian rule. This arrangement was formalized in the Rhodes Agreement in March 1949.[2][3] A week after David Ben-Gurion presented his party’s assertion that “Jewish Jerusalem is an organic, inseparable part of the State of Israel” in December 1949,[4] Jordan annexed East Jerusalem.[5] These decisions were confirmed respectively in the Knesset in January 1950 and the Jordanian Parliament in April 1950.[6]

On being occupied by Israel after the 1967 Six-Day War, East Jerusalem, with expanded borders, came under direct Israeli rule.[7] East Jerusalem had been occupied by Israel in June 1967. On 27–28 June 1967, East Jerusalem was integrated into Jerusalem by extension of its municipal borders and was placed under the law, jurisdiction and administration of the State of Israel.[8][9] In a unanimous General Assembly resolution, the UN declared the measures trying to change the status of the city invalid.[10] Jerusalem was effectively annexed by Israel in 1980, an act internationally condemned.[by whom?]

In the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)’s Palestinian Declaration of Independence of 1988, Jerusalem is stated to be the capital of the State of Palestine. In 2000, the Palestinian Authority passed a law proclaiming Jerusalem as such, and in 2002, this law was ratified by then chairman Yasser Arafat,[11][12] although Israel does not allow Palestinian government offices in East Jerusalem. The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) recognised East Jerusalem as capital of the State of Palestine on 13 December 2017.

Political term
History
See also: History of Jerusalem and Timeline of Jerusalem
1948 Arab–Israeli War aftermath

Following the 1948 Arab–Israeli War, Jerusalem was divided into two parts. The western portion, populated primarily by Jews, came under Israeli rule, while the eastern portion, populated mainly by Muslim and Christian Palestinians, came under Jordanian rule. Arabs living in such western Jerusalem neighbourhoods as Katamon or Malha either fled or were in some cases forced out; the same fate befell Jews in the eastern areas, including the Old City and Silwan. The only eastern area of the city that remained in Israeli hands throughout the 19 years of Jordanian rule was Mount Scopus, where the Hebrew University is located, which formed an enclave during that period.

Following the 1967 Six-Day War, the eastern part of Jerusalem came under Israeli rule, along with the entire West Bank. Shortly after the Israeli takeover, East Jerusalem was annexed to West Jerusalem, together with several neighboring West Bank villages. In November 1967, United Nations Security Council Resolution 242 was passed, calling for Israel to withdraw “from territories occupied in the recent conflict” in exchange for peace treaties. In 1980, the Knesset passed the Jerusalem Law, which declared that “Jerusalem, complete and united, is the capital of Israel”, which is commonly called an act of annexation, though no such formal measure was even taken.[8][17] This declaration was determined to be “null and void” by United Nations Security Council Resolution 478.

Jordanian rule
See also: Jordanian annexation of the West Bank
King Hussein flying over the Temple Mount while it was under Jordanian control, 1965

Jerusalem was to be an international city under the 1947 UN Partition Plan. It was not included as a part of either the proposed Jewish or Arab states. During the 1948 Arab–Israeli War, the western part of Jerusalem was captured by Israel, while East Jerusalem (including the Old City) was captured by Jordan. The war came to an end with the signing of the 1949 Armistice Agreements.

Upon its capture, the Jordanians immediately expelled all the Jewish residents of the Jewish Quarter. 58 synagogues were destroyed.[19][20] The ancient Jewish cemetery on Mount of Olives was desecrated, and the tombstones there were used for construction and paving roads.[21] Jordan also destroyed the Jewish villages of Atarot and Neve Yaakov just north of Jerusalem (their sites became Jerusalem neighborhoods after 1967).

East Jerusalem absorbed some of the refugees from West Jerusalem’s Arab neighborhoods that came under Israeli rule. Thousands of Arab refugees who were displaced from their homes in Israeli-held West Jerusalem were settled in the previously Jewish areas of East Jerusalem.

In 1950 East Jerusalem, along with the rest of the West Bank, was annexed by Jordan. Nevertheless, the annexation of the West Bank was recognized only by the United Kingdom, although the Israeli and Jordanian annexations of the two parts of Jerusalem were given only de facto recognition. During the period of Jordanian rule, East Jerusalem lost much of its importance, as it was no longer a capital, and losing its link to the coast diminished its role as a commercial hub. It even saw a population decrease, with merchants and administrators moving to Amman. On the other hand, it maintained its religious importance, as well as its role as a regional center. Reaffirming a 1953 statement, Jordan in 1960 declared Jerusalem its second capital.[22] The USA (and other powers) protested this plan, and stated it could not “recognize or associate itself in any way with actions which confer upon Jerusalem the attributes of a seat of government…”

During the 1960s, Jerusalem saw economic improvement and its tourism industry developed significantly, and its holy sites attracted growing numbers of pilgrims, but Israelis of all religions were not allowed into East Jerusalem.[clarification needed][18][24] Israeli rule
After 1967 war

During the Six-Day War of 1967 Israel captured the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and eventually incorporated Eastern Jerusalem and its surroundings into the municipality of Jerusalem, including several neighboring villages.[25] This move, amounting to 111 km2 (43 sq mi)[dubious ] of West Bank territory,[26] excluded many of East Jerusalem’s suburbs and divided several villages. The old Moroccan Quarter in front of the Western Wall was bulldozed three days after its capture, leading to the deaths of several residents in the forced resettlement of its 135 families.[26][27][28] It was replaced with a large open air plaza. The Jewish Quarter, destroyed in 1948, was depopulated, rebuilt and resettled by Jews.

After 1980 annexation
Israeli West Bank barrier in Jerusalem

Under Israeli rule, members of all religions are largely granted access to their holy sites, with the Muslim Waqf maintaining control of the Temple Mount and the Muslim holy sites there.

With the stated purpose of preventing infiltration during the Second Intifada, Israel decided to surround Jerusalem’s eastern perimeter with a security barrier. The structure has separated East Jerusalem neighborhoods from the West Bank suburbs, all of which are under the jurisdiction of Israel and the IDF. The planned route of the separation barrier has raised much criticism, with the Israeli Supreme Court ruling that certain sections of the barrier (including East Jerusalem sections) must be re-routed.

The Oslo Accords, prohibit the establishment of any activity of the Palestinian Authority in Jerusalem. Under the pretext that they are part of the PA, Israel closed many Palestinian NGOs since 2001.

In the 25 January 2006 Palestinian Legislative Elections, 6,300 East Jerusalem Arabs were registered and permitted to vote locally. All other residents had to travel to West Bank polling stations. Hamas won four seats and Fatah two, even though Hamas was barred by Israel from campaigning in the city. Fewer than 6,000 residents were permitted to vote locally in the prior 1996 elections.

In March 2009, a confidential “EU Heads of Mission Report on East Jerusalem” was published, in which the Israeli government was accused of “actively pursuing the illegal annexation” of East Jerusalem. The report stated: “Israeli ‘facts on the ground’ – including new settlements, construction of the barrier, discriminatory housing policies, house demolitions, restrictive permit regime and continued closure of Palestinian institutions – increase Jewish Israeli presence in East Jerusalem, weaken the Palestinian community in the city, impede Palestinian urban development and separate East Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank.”

A poll conducted by Palestinian Center for Public Opinion and American Pechter Middle East Polls for the Council on Foreign Relations, among East Jerusalem Arab residents in 2011 revealed that 39% of East Jerusalem Arab residents would prefer Israeli citizenship contrary to 31% who opted for Palestinian citizenship. According to the poll, 40% of Palestinian residents would prefer to leave their neighborhoods if they would be placed under Palestinian rule.

 

FBI DIR – THE CHINA THREAT

The director of the FBI says the whole of Chinese society is a threat to the US — and Americans must step up as a society

to defend themselves
www.businessinsider.com

FBI Director Christopher Wray; Chinese President Xi Jinping. AP/Andrew Harnik/Fred Dufour/Pool

FBI director Christopher Wray issued a dire warning against China’s growing influence during a Senate intelligence hearing on Tuesday.

He cited the variety of ways that China is implementing its plan to replace the US as the foremost global power, including infiltrating American academia.

China’s Confucius Institutes are ostensibly language learning centers, but often serve as vehicles for Chinese propaganda at universities around the world, including the US.

Intelligence experts also cited Chinese cybersecurity threats as a major concern in 2018.

FBI director Christopher Wray reiterated a commonly held view on Tuesday that China is seeking to become a global superpower through unconventional means — but framed the threat China poses to the US as not just a governmental one, but as a societal one, too.

Speaking before the Senate Intelligence Committee alongside the heads of other US intelligence agencies, Wray told Senators that China is using a host of methods to undermine American military, economic, cultural, and informational power across the globe that rely on more than just China’s state institutions.

“One of the things we’re trying to do is view the China threat as not just a whole of government threat, but a whole of society threat on their end,” Wray said, “and I think it’s going to take a whole-of-society response by us.”

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats expressed a similar sentiment after Sen. Marco Rubio asked him about China’s plans to overtake the US as the world’s supreme world power.

“There is no question that what you have just articulated is what’s happening with China,” Coats said. “They’re doing it in a very smart way; they’re doing it in a very effective way; they are looking beyond their own region.”

Coats said multiple agencies are conducting “intensive studies” to understand the ways China is looking to carry out its global agenda.

The double-edged sword of open academics
Wray pointed to China’s use of unconventional intelligence sources at US universities as a salient example of China’s reach.

In intelligence jargon, “collectors” are individuals who collect intelligence on behalf of agencies or governments. And he said they’ve infiltrated American universities.

“I think in this setting, I would just say that the use of non-traditional collectors — especially in the academic setting, whether it’s professors, scientists, students — we see in almost every field office that the FBI has around the country,” Wray said.

“They’re exploiting the very open research and development environment that we have which we all revere, but they’re taking advantage of it,” Wray added, noting that there is a “naivete” amid academics about the risks posed by foreign nationals at universities.

Chinese President Hu Jintao (L) visits the The Confucius Institute at Walter Payton College Preparatory High School in Chicago on January 21, 2011. REUTERS/Chris Walker/Pool

As Wray mentioned, the openness of academia in general contributes to an open flow of ideas across the globe and the overall advancement of human knowledge and innovation.

To this end, US universities admit over a million international students, and Chinese students make up the largest share of these students. Nearly 329,000 Chinese nationals were enrolled in American colleges during the 2015-2016 school year, according to TIME.

While there is no evidence that a majority of Chinese students or academics pose any threat to US interests, there are a number of education efforts that the Chinese government uses as vehicles for soft power.

The first of these are the Confucius Institutes, which Rubio alluded to during his questioning of Wray and Coats at the Senate hearing.

These institutes mirror many other foreign-language education entities that countries fund around the world, but with a couple caveats. Rather than existing as stand-alone bodies, they are inserted into US universities, and in addition to teaching Mandarin Chinese, they also reportedly engage in disseminating Chinese propaganda and restricting what professors and students should say.

As a result of the dangers to open expression posed by these institutes, the University of Chicago and Pennsylvania State have already closed the Confucius Institutes on their campuses. Other global universities have followed suit.

Confucius Institutes also have a strong presence on the African continent, where China is also in the process of growing its economic and political power. Africans in countries like Zambia and Zimbabwe are encouraged to view China as a positive economic force and a source of progress and opportunity as part of the “Look East” policy many African countries have implemented.

As a result of this push, the number of African students in China has skyrocketed over the last 10 years.

Chinese cybersecurity threats – During Tuesday’s Senate hearing, the top US intel chiefs drew attention to Chinese cybersecurity strategies.

“Frankly, the United States is under attack,” Coats said, “by entities that are using cyber to penetrate virtually every major action that takes place” within the US.

U.S. security chiefs testify before Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on “worldwide threats” on Capitol Hill in Washington Thomson Reuters

The Worldwide Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community, also released Tuesday, outlines China’s online capabilities in detail.

“China will continue to use cyber espionage and bolster cyber attack capabilities to support national security priorities,” the report concluded. Coats added that China’s cyber activity is at much lower levels than it was before September 2015, but is still threatening

Most Chinese cyber operations that the US has detected targeting private industry are against defense contractors, IT, and communications firms. The assessment said these companies are often ones that support the international operations of both the US government and the private sector.

As a result of these findings, several intelligence heads reaffirmed the necessity to beef up US counterintelligence efforts in cyberspace. Many indeed identified it as one of the top priorities for the intelligence community in the coming year.

With so many facets of American society under threat, Wray said it would take a lot more than just work from intelligence agencies to combat China.

“It’s not just the intelligence community,” he said, “but it’s raising awareness within our academic sector, within our private sector, as part of the defense.”

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Couple deplores heartbreaking scene at Durham VA
abc11.com

It’s not hard to find stories of headaches — and heartache — when it comes to the VA. What makes this one different is it has pictures to go with it.Marine veteran Stephen McMenamin and his wife, Hanna, moved to Raleigh from their home in Milwaukee a few months ago and already have amassed an armload of personal stories about long wait times at the Durham VA hospital — both to get appointments in the first place and in the waiting room once at the hospital. But they said it was what they saw Friday that moved them to take pictures and post them to Facebook.”It was very upsetting,” Stephen McMenamin said. He and his wife said they saw a handful of older veterans mistreated and ignored during the seven hours they were at the hospital, including an aged-veteran in a wheelchair.Stay on top of breaking news stories with the ABC11 News App”He had been sitting there for quite some time groaning and convulsing in pain,” McMenamin said. “Almost to the point of where he was falling out of his wheelchair.””He was visibly in pain,” said Hanna. “And I think the thing with that that disturbed me so much was that there were people just sitting there acting like nothing was happening and he was sitting right in front of them and they were not even acknowledging that it was happening.”McMenamin says he and other patients asked if there was anything staff at the hospital could do to make the man more comfortable and were repeatedly told no.After several hours, McMenamin says he offered the man a wheelchair he had been given. “He sat in it for probably 15 minutes until the head nurse came around and kicked him out and said he can’t do that, he can’t be in that area. She was very rough with him and just completely insensitive,” he said.Share news tips with the ABC11 News AppMcMenamin and his wife say another veteran that caught their attention was an older man who looked deathly ill coming in but also was made to wait. After multiple times trying to get comfortable and being told he could not, McMenamin says he just lay on the emergency room floor.”He just kind of laid down and said, ‘I can’t get up, I won’t get up. Please get me a blanket until you can see me.’ ” McMenamin says security guards helped the man up after about five minutes and he was taken out of the waiting room.”It’s just horrible sitting in a room like that with people who could have been my grandfather,” Hanna added, “in that much pain and having people not even react, it seemed like.”The majority of the people working there were very nice to us. They were great,” she added. “It’s just that you have these people that don’t care it seems like, and from what I’ve read from the comments, this is happening all over the place. You get people that just don’t care for what they’re doing and they feel like they can’t be fired, so they just kind of get away with it. I just think it’s unacceptable.” The Director of the VA Hospital in Durham, DeAnne Seekins agreed that anything short of respectfully giving top-notch care to veterans is unacceptable but wouldn’t say that’s what happened Friday.Seekins said she called two of the three veterans the McMenamin’s believed to be mistreated and told the I-Team that both thought they got great care at the hospital.She said they hadn’t been able to track down the third. But the I-Team did and the veteran, who didn’t want to be identified to the hospital, said he felt like he got terrible care.Regardless, Seekins released a statement saying in part, ‘We take seriously any allegation of poor service. I was made aware of a regrettable incident that occurred in our Emergency Department over the weekend and am thankful someone cared enough to share the incident with us. Our mission is to provide the highest level of health care to Veterans, so upon learning of the incident, I took swift action. The employee was immediately removed from patient care pending the results of an internal review. We truly regret how this Veteran was treated.’Seekins sat down with the I-Team regarding this story after it ran and had this message for veterans:

ISIS-HAMAS WEDDING IN THE SINAI

Highly-trained Hamas commandos head to Egypt to team-up with terror group ISIS
www.thesun.co.uk
NEW AXIS OF EVIL
Bomb makers are among those said to have joined Islamic State jihadis

by jon lockett 9th February 2017, 1:35 pm
INCREASING numbers of elite Hamas commandos are leaving the Gaza Strip to join forces with ISIS in Egypt.

Members of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades and the Hamas commando wing (Nukhba) have teamed-up with the terror group. ISIS now has a strong military presence in Egypt; many have travelled to the war-torn Sinai peninsula which already has a heavy ISIS presence, reports the Times of Israel.

Highly-trained bomb makers are among those said to have joined up with Islamis State jihadis.

ISIS has carried out a string of bloody attacks targeting both civilians and the Egyptian army over the last few years.

The peninsula, which borders Israel and the Gaza Strip, has become home to several extremist groups since the Arab Spring protests of 2011.

Several groups have close ties to Gaza, with arms routinely smuggled back and forth across the border as well as fighters in need of training or medical care.

Egypt’s government openly opposes any military co-operation between ISIS and Hamas. However, lately it has shown some will to reconcile with the Palestinian group – which has vowed the destruction of Israel.

In January, Hamas security officials met with the Egyptian authorities in Cairo for security talks.

 

Opinion: This begs the thousand-dollar question – Can Egypt be trusted? NO, it would appear at this point, even after both ISIS and Hamas have engaged in hostilities with the Egyptian Army in the Sinai. The only reason ISIS Death Cult is even trying to establish a foothold in the Sinai: To position itself to attack Israel. Hamas is funded by Iran. Iran and ISIS have the same “annihilate Israel totally” as soon as possible.

Unlike the past-president and now infamous Islamo-Apologist Barack Obama, who is a known Muslim Brotherhood sympathizer and supporter, President Donald Trump is not suffering from any delusional psychosis that caused Obama to develop an odd sense of Moral Relativism. Obama has a perverted notion that past European Colonialism is inherently more evil and destructive than Islamo-Fascism.

US NAVY’S SHIPBOARD LASERS

The US Navy plans to fire laser weapons off of ships within a year
www.businessinsider.com
USS Ponce conducts an operational demonstration of the Office of Naval Research-sponsored Laser Weapon System, LaWS, while deployed to the Arabian Gulf. US Navy Photo

The U.S. Navy is moving at warp speed to develop lasers with more lethality, precision and power sources as a way to destroy attacking missiles, drones aircraft and other threats.

“We’re doing a lot more with lasers,” Rear Adm. Ronald Boxall, director, Surface Warfare Division, said earlier this month at the annual Surface Naval Association national symposium.

The Navy plans to fire a 150-kw weapon off a test ship within a year, he said. “Then a year later, we’ll have that on a carrier or a destroyer or both.”

That’s quite a jump from the kw AN/SEQ-3(XN-1) Laser Weapon System (LaWS), which deployed in 2014 on the amphibious transport dock USS Ponce.

And the kind of power needed to power such a weapon won’t come with a simple flip of a switch.

“The Navy will be looking at ships’ servers to provide three times that much power,” says Donald Klick, director of business development, for DRS Power and Control Technologies. “To be putting out 150 kws, they (the laser systems) will be consuming 450 kws.”

That is more than most currently operational ships are designed to accommodate, at least when they are conducting other tasks. “Few power systems onboard ships can support sustained usage of a high-powered laser without additional energy storage,” noted a recent Naval Postgraduate School paper titled “Power Systems and Energy Storage Modeling for Directed Energy Weapons”.

The paper said, “The new DDG-1000 may have enough electrical energy, but other platforms … may require some type of ‘energy magazine.’ This magazine stores energy for on-demand usage by the laser. It can be made up of batteries, capacitors, or flywheels, and would recharge between laser pulses. The energy magazine should allow for sustained usage against a swarm of targets in an engagement lasting up to twenty minutes.

The US Navy Afloat Forward Staging Base (Interim) USS Ponce (AFSB(I)-15) conducts an operational demonstration of the Office of Naval Research (ONR)-sponsored Laser Weapon System (LaWS) while deployed to the Arabian Gulf. John F. Williams/US Navy

The ship’s integrated power system, which includes its electric propulsion, helps generate up to 78 megawatts of on-board electrical power, something seen as key to the future when it comes to ship technologies and the application of anticipated future weapons systems such as laser weapons and rail guns. The ship’s electric drive uses two main turbine generations with two auxiliary turbine generators which power up two 35-megawatt advanced induction motors, developers explained.

Ideally, it would charge up as fast as it discharges, allowing for indefinite use (as long as there is ship’s fuel to expend). Low maintenance, high safety, and long lifespan are other desirable characteristics.

DRS Power and Control Technologies is one of the companies which is developing a specialized energy source. “We have enough for well over 100 shots before we go to recharge,” DRS’s Klick said during a break at SNA, pointing out there’s even a mode for continuous recharge. “If you’ve got power this kind of power, you don’t go Winchester.”

The DRS system uses a Li-Ion battery subsystem designed and provided by Lithiumstart housed in three distributed steel, welded cabinets that are 48” x 66” x 100” – although they are modular, Klick says, and can be arranged for a tailored fit. Each cabinet contains 18 drawers with 480 Li-Ion phosphate cells in each drawer.

The redundant power modules can provide 465 k each for a total of 930 kw. It can hold that full-power mark for about three minutes, Klick says – although most “lases” are normally of relatively short duration.

An at-sea demonstration of the magazine is slated for 2018, Klick says, mostly with the 150-kw laser being developed by Northrop Grumman for the Office of Naval Research.

The system still must go through rigorous Navy certification testing, Klick says.

Lockheed Martin C-130 in flight. Lockheed Martin

He also sees the energy magazine as a candidate for other U.S. military units. “We’re looking at Air Force Special Forces on a C-130. You have to strike a car, but you’re worried about collateral damage. With that pinpoint accuracy, you don’t have to worry about collateral damage. You can just cause a car to stop running. There’s a lot more capability.”

Long-Term Effort
The Navy has already been working with Northrop Grumman on a three-year deal to develop a ship-board laser weapon engineered to quickly incinerate enemy drones, small boats, aircraft, ships and missiles, service officials told Scout Warrior.

“This system employs multi-spectral target detection and track capabilities as well as an advanced off-axis beam director with improved fiber laser technologies to provide extended target engagement ranges. Improvements of high power fiber lasers used to form the laser beam enable the increased power levels and extended range capabilities. Lessons learned, operating procedures, updated hardware and software derived from previous systems will be incorporated in this demonstration,” Dr. Tom Beutner, director of the Air Warfare and Weapons branch, Office of Naval Research, told Scout Warrior in a written statement at the time of the contract announcement.

A previously established 12-month, $53-million deal between Northrop and the Office of Naval Research will develop a Laser Weapon System Demonstrator through three phases; the phases include an initial design phase, ground-testing phase and then weapons testing at sea aboard a Navy Self Defense test ship, a Northrop statement said.

“The company will design, produce, integrate, and support the shipboard testing of a 150-kilowatt-class solid state (electric) laser weapon system,” the Northrop statement added. “The contract could grow to a total value of $91 million over 34 months if ONR exercises all of its contract options.”

Office of Naval Research officials told Scout Warrior an aim of the developmental program is to engineer a prototype weapons for further analysis.

“The possibilities can become integrated prototypes — and the prototypes become reality when they become acquisition programs,” an ONR official said.

It is not yet clear when this weapon might be operational but the intention seems to be to arm surface ships such as destroyers, cruisers and possibly even carriers or an LCS with inexpensive offensive or defensive laser weapons technology.

Screenshot via LockheedMartinVideos/YouTube

“It is way too early to determine if this system will ever become operational. Northrop Grumman has been funded to set-up a demo to “demonstrate” the capabilities to senior leadership, who will then determine whether it is an asset worth further funding and turning into a program of record,” a Navy official told Scout Warrior.

Both Navy and Northrop Grumman officials often talk about the cost advantages of firing laser weapons to incinerate incoming enemy attacks or destroy enemy targets without having to expend an interceptor missile worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Navy officials describe this as getting ahead of the cost curve.

“For about the price of a gallon of diesel fuel per shot, we’re offering the Navy a high-precision defensive approach that will protect not only its sailors, but also its wallet,” said Guy Renard, director and program manager, directed energy, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems.

As mentioned, the Navy has already deployed one laser system, called the Laser Weapons System, or LaWS, which has been operational for months.

LaWS uses heat energy from lasers to disable or destroy targets fast, slow, stationary and moving targets. The system has successfully incinerated UAVs and other targets in tests shots, and has been operational aboard an amphibious transport dock in the Persian Gulf, the USS Ponce.

The scalable weapon is designed to destroy threats for about $59-cents per shot, an amount that is exponentially lower that the hundreds of thousands or millions needed to fire an interceptor missile such as the Standard Missile-2, Navy officials explained.

While at sea, sailors have been using the LaWS for targeting and training exercises every day and the weapon has even been used to disable and destroy some targets, service officials said.

Navy sailors and engineers have discovered some unanticipated intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance value from the laser weapons system by using its long-range telescope to scan for targets as well, Navy officials said.

U.S. Navy

Laser weapons are expected to figure prominently in the Navy’s future plans in several respects. New Navy platforms such as the high-tech destroyer, the DDG 1000 or USS Zumwalt, is engineered with an electric drive propulsion system and extra on-board electrical power called an Integrated Power System. This system is in part designed to power-up ship electrical systems and accommodate emerging future weapons systems such as lasers and rail guns.

“Laser weapons provide deep magazines, low cost per shot, and precision engagement capabilities with variable effects that range from dazzling to structural defeat against asymmetric threats that are facing the US Naval force,”  Beutner added.

In addition, laser weapons integrate fully into the Navy’s emerging “distributed lethality” strategy aimed at better arming the surface fleet with a wide array of offensive and defensive weapons.

Read the original article on Scout Warrior. Copyright 2017. Follow Scout Warrior on Twitter.

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