Saturday, June 05, 2010

DTN News: India Can Thrust War On Pakistan, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani Tells Nato

DTN News: India Can Thrust War On Pakistan, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani Tells Nato
* Gilani shows concern over increase in New Delhi’s military budget
Source: The News (Pakistan Media) By Muhammad Saleh Zaafir & Asim Yasin Dt. Saturday, June 05, 2010
(NSI News Source Info) BRUSSELS, Belgium - June 6, 2010: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, while pointing towards the Pakistan-specific Indian military doctrines such as the Cold Start, has urged the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (Nato) to take active interest in South Asian security perspective.
“We remain concerned over Pakistan-specific Indian military doctrines such as the Cold Start envisaging a limited conventional war under the nuclear overhang, huge increase in Indian military budget and massive weapon acquisitions,” he said.
“These together with discriminatory policies especially in the nuclear and technological arena have accentuated the regional imbalance in South Asia,” he said while addressing the North Atlantic Council (NAC) here on Friday. Gilani said it was a nuclearised region and issues of peace, strategic stability and security pose formidable challenges to Pakistan and impinge on global peace and security.
He said Pakistan-India relations had a significant bearing on South Asian security, adding, unfortunately, outstanding disputes such as Kashmir, Siachen, and Sir Creek continue to fester and require a just and peaceful resolution.
“Our region is also water stressed. As a lower riparian, these water issues have started to impact Pakistan’s agriculture and the wellbeing of our people,” he added. Prime Minister Gilani said issues of peace and security, in particular, strategic stability needed to be addressed in a forthright manner.
Gilani said Pakistan believed that all these and other issues between Pakistan and India must be resolved peacefully through dialogue. Prime Minister Gilani said regrettably since the past two years, the composite dialogue process was stalled, adding the ostensible reason given by India was the Mumbai terror attack.
He, however, pointed out that Pakistan acted swiftly to get the suspects arrested. “We have done our utmost to bring the perpetrators to justice. We have indicated to India that only serious, sustained and pragmatic cooperation is the sure way of addressing each others concerns on terrorism.”
Prime Minister Gilani said Pakistan had suggested that the Joint Anti-Terrorism Mechanism be reactivated, adding: “We desire good neighbourly and cooperative relations with India”. He said Pakistan and India had no option, but to resolve peacefully all outstanding disputes including Kashmir, Siachen and water.
“We must also work closely on eliminating terrorism and forging closer economic and trade relations,” he added. Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani while vowing not to allow any space to terrorists in Pakistan said the country had done and accomplished more in Afghanistan than the international forces. He focused on Pakistan relations with Nato, Afghanistan and India and said it knew fully well how to plan its strategy to cope with all challenges it was confronting. “We know better than most outsiders how best to prosecute our counter-terror efforts,” he said and added Pakistan had not only proven its ability to do so but also managed the internally dislocated people by terrorism in a short span of time.
“We would never allow terrorism and violent extremism to overtake our way of life, our culture, our traditions and disrupt our societal harmony,” he said. The prime minister said Pakistan had utilised its own national capacity to effectively deal with militancy and terror imposed from across the border from Afghanistan.
He said the turbulence in Pakistan’s adjoining regions had continued to have a serious detrimental effect on realising the full development potential.
The Pakistani nation, Gilani said, was fully united in eliminating the menace of terrorism and mentioned that his government had given political ownership to the counterterrorism campaign that was being brilliantly executed by the Pakistan Armed Forces and the security agencies.
“It is our national resolve not to allow terrorists any space on our territory. Equally, we will not permit the use of territory of our neighbours for sponsoring, supporting or abetting acts of terror against Pakistan.”
Gilani said Pakistan had done more and accomplished more than the international forces in adjoining Afghanistan. “All this has been at a considerable cost. Over 30,000 casualties, $50 billion worth of losses in property and infrastructure and thousands of disabilities. The economic costs are astounding. Yet we will press ahead and will not relent.”
Gilani said he was here at the Nato headquarters to seek understanding, and neither acknowledgement nor gratitude. “Pakistan has done its utmost. We will continue to do what is right and just. We do it for our own sake.”
He said Pakistan was happy to partner with Nato on the anti-terrorism front. “We only want you to understand that we are fully capable of determining how best to proceed in the prevailing environment given our national capacities,” he stressed.
“Pakistan and Nato share a common objective of making the regional and global pace possible and the close practical cooperation between the Nato and Pakistan, which we have been able to foster in recent years, is crucial for achieving the cherished goal,” said Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani at a joint press conference with Nato Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen here at the NATO Headquarters in Brussels.
“We agreed that Pakistan and Nato will jointly cooperate to defeat terrorism,” said Nato Secretary General Rasmussen. In a reply to a question, the Nato secretary general said the organisation would consider the option, if Pakistan requested for the training of its civil law enforcement agencies. “We have already military to military cooperation and agree that the cooperation should expand,” he added.
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DTN News: Saudi Aramco Takes Delivery Of Three AW139 Helicopters

DTN News: Saudi Aramco Takes Delivery Of Three AW139 Helicopters
Source: DTN News / AgustaWestland
(NSI News Source Info) VERGIATE, Italy - June 6, 2010: AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, is pleased to announce that Saudi Aramco has taken delivery of three more AW139 medium twin helicopters during an official ceremony held at AgustaWestland’s Vergiate plant in Italy. These aircraft will be used to support oil and gas operations in Saudi Arabia. The AW139 has achieved great success in many countries in the Middle East for a wide range of applications. It is now also in service with many of the global helicopter operators thanks to its outstanding features in terms of performance in the most demanding conditions, operational effectiveness, mission capability, safety and ease of maintenance. The AW139 has quickly become the helicopter of choice in the world medium twin market. The AW139 meets the most stringent civil and government certification standards, including the FAA and JAA FAR/JAR Part 29 requirements. An ergonomic cockpit, excellent handling characteristics and low vibration levels significantly reduce pilot fatigue and enhance comfort. Two powerful Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6C-67C engines with FADEC deliver a high power-to-weight ratio maximizing safety in demanding operational conditions. With its power reserve, the AW139 delivers Category A (Class 1) performance from a helipad (elevated or at ground level) at maximum take-off weight with a superior one engine inoperative capability compared to other helicopters in its class.The standard AW139 cabin configuration provides seating for twelve or fifteen passengers in a large and bright 8.0 m3 cabin with excellent ease of access and egress via large sliding cabin doors. Excellent payload and performance ensure unmatched productivity for offshore operations. Energy-absorbing landing gear, fuselage and seats as well as high main and tail rotor ground clearance provide added safety for the passengers and ground staff whilst on the ground. Over 130 customers from almost 50 countries have ordered over 460 helicopters to perform a wide range of roles also including offshore transport, EMS/SAR, VIP/corporate transport, law enforcement, utility and government missions. Over 130 customers from almost 50 countries have ordered over 460 helicopters to perform a wide range of roles also including offshore transport, EMS/SAR, VIP/corporate transport, law enforcement, utility and government missions.

DTN News: Indonesia Plans To Buy More Submarines, C-130s

DTN News: Indonesia Plans To Buy More Submarines, C-130s
* Plans to modernise some of its C-130s, buy another 10
* Looking to buy more submarines in a "couple of years"
Source: DTN News / By Harry Suhartono and Nopporn Wong-Anan (Reuters)
(NSI News Source Info) SINGAPORE - June 6, 2010: Indonesia plans to increase the size of its submarine fleet over the next two years to defend its territory as well as protect international shipping lanes, its defence minister said on Saturday. Purnomo Yusgiantoro also told Reuters the country was discussing buying 10 more C-130 military transport aircraft from Lockheed Martin (LMT.N) but had not come to any agreement. Indonesia, the world's largest archipelago with more than 17,000 islands, lies across shipping lanes between the Indian and Pacific oceans as well as between Asia and Australia, heavily used for transporting commodities and energy. It currently has two submarines. Singapore put out a warning earlier this year about possible attacks on ships in the Malacca Strait, one of the world's busiest shipping lanes that lies between the city state, Indonesia and Malaysia and carries about 40 percent of global trade. "We have several countries that we think are able to supply them (submarines). We want to make sure that it would be compatible to our needs as well as our sea (conditions)," Yusgiantoro said in an interview on the sidelines of the Shangri-La Dialogue security conference in Singapore. "They are very important in order for us to guard sea lanes. We are going to have that in a couple of years," he said, without giving further details. Yusgiantoro also said the government had earmarked funds in this year's budget to modernise some of its 32 C-130s. "We can use that (plane) not only to bring troops, but also for humanitarian missions. We are ready to buy but we are still in discussions with the seller." Indonesia set aside 42 trillion rupiah ($4.6 billion) in 2010 for defence spending, with most earmarked for operating expenditure for its 550,000-strong military force. The country plans to boost its defence spending up to 1.5 percent of gross domestic product by 2014 from about 0.7-0.8 percent in 2010, among the lowest in the region. Yusgiantoro held a meeting with U.S. Defence Secretary Robert Gates on Friday, which he characterised as "very good". Indonesia is currently working to improve its military ties with the United States, including removing a ban on military training for its special forces, put in place over rights abuses blamed on elite troops. "I think things will become more positive," Yusgiantoro said, but he did not comment on when the ban was likely to be removed. Yusgiantoro, a Catholic minister in the world's most populous Muslim country, said his nation's defence ties with Washington were akin to a marriage, which could be rocky at times. "I don't see any problem with our cooperation. But you know you always have little things going on, something like little arguments between you and your wife after she found a picture of another girl in your pocket," he said. ($1=9,175 Rupiah) (Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan, John Stonestreet)

DTN News: Arms To Taiwan No Reason To Suspend US-China Ties Says Defense Secretary Robert Gates

DTN News: Arms To Taiwan No Reason To Suspend US-China Ties Says Defense Secretary Robert Gates
Source: DTN News / By Dan De Luce (AFP)
(NSI News Source Info) SINGAPORE - June 6, 2010: Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Saturday chided China for suspending military ties over US arms sales to Taiwan, saying Beijing's stance "makes little sense". Renewing his call for stronger relations between the Chinese and US militaries, Gates said such a dialogue should not be "held hostage" over the weapons sales. The sales have been going on for decades and Washington has made clear that it does not support independence for Taiwan, Gates said in a speech at a security conference in Singapore. "Chinese officials have broken off interactions between our militaries, citing US arms sales to Taiwan as the rationale," he said. "For a variety of reasons, this makes little sense." But a top Chinese officer at the conference rejected Gates' view, saying Beijing was not to blame and that arms sales to Taiwan and US naval ships in the South China Sea were undermining military relations. "We do not regard US arms sales to Taiwan as something normal," General Ma Xiaotian, deputy chief of staff of the Peope's Liberation Army (PLA), said at the Shangri-La Dialogue, an annual high-level security forum. "The United States says it does not support Taiwan independence. We hope it's not simply... lip service," he said. Gates had planned to travel to Beijing as part of an Asian tour that began Thursday in Singapore. But China rebuffed the defence secretary and called off the visit. As a result, Gates chose not to meet the Chinese military delegation at the Singapore conference. After his speech, an uncomfortable exchange between a Chinese general and Gates illustrated the often tense relations between the two countries' militaries. Major General Zhu Chenghu, speaking in English, asked Gates to explain what he called a contradiction between the US condemnation of North Korea over the sinking of Seoul's Cheonan warship and a more cautious US reaction to a deadly raid by Israel against a Gaza-bound aid ship. "I think it (the Israeli raid) needs to be investigated and we will withhold judgement until that investigation is complete. But I think there is no comparison whatever between what happened in the eastern Mediterranean and what happened to the Cheonan," said Gates. The South Korean ship was the target of a surprise attack, Gates said, while the Israelis issued warnings to the aid ship before their raid. After his remarks, Gates walked over and shook hands with General Ma, the head of the Chinese delegation. In his speech, Gates said President Barack Obama's decision to approve an arms package for Taiwan in January should have come as no surprise, as it was in keeping with long-standing US policy. He said Washington had declared publicly for years that it did not endorse independence for Taiwan. Gates said China's on-off approach would not persuade Washington to alter its policy and argued that US weapons sales to Taiwan helped maintain regional peace given China's growing military buildup. Gates on Thursday suggested a rift between Chinese civilian and military leaders on the issue, saying the People's Liberation Army was much less interested in building US ties than the political leadership. Along with calls for cooperation, Gates also said the United States would retain its elaborate military presence across the region. "We are, and will remain, a Pacific power," he said. While Ma voiced concern over US operations in the South China Sea, Gates called for unfettered access to the resource-rich area and said Washington objected to any effort to "intimidate" US energy firms in the region. The South China Sea was the subject of "growing concern" due to various territorial disputes in the region, which could pose a threat to free navigation and "economic development", he said.

DTN News: Israel Diverts Gaza Aid Ship Rachel Corrie To Ashdod

DTN News: Israel Diverts Gaza Aid Ship Rachel Corrie To Ashdod
Source: DTN News / BBC News Saturday, 5 June 2010
(NSI News Source Info) ASHDOD, Israel - June 6, 2010: An aid ship intercepted by the Israeli military while trying to break the blockade of Gaza has arrived in the Israeli port of Ashdod. Israel says its soldiers boarded the Irish-owned Rachel Corrie from the sea and did not meet any resistance. There has been no word from those on board, who include several activists. The incident comes five days after nine people were killed in clashes when troops boarded a Turkish aid ship, prompting international criticism. Israel says it will question those on board at the port and transfer the aid to the Gaza Strip by land after checking the cargo for banned items. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hailed the peaceful outcome to the operation. The Israeli military issued footage of the Rachel Corrie boarding "We saw today the difference between a ship of peace activists, with whom we don't agree but respect their right to a different opinion from ours, and between a ship of hate organised by violent Turkish terror extremists," Mr Netanyahu's office quoted him as saying. Mary Hughes, a co-founder of the Free Gaza Movement which organised the shipment, told the BBC she was "outraged" by the latest Israeli action. "They (the Israelis) once again went into international water and violently boarded a boat and forced people against their will to go to Israel, when all we wanted was to be left to go to Gaza, which is our goal," she said. She added that further aid shipments to Gaza would be organised. "We will continue until we break the siege," she said. Passengers gathered There are five Irish and six Malaysian pro-Palestinian activists, plus several crew, on the boat. The Rachel Corrie is named after a US college student who was crushed to death by an Israeli army bulldozer as she protested over house demolitions in Gaza in 2003. Israel has blockaded Gaza since 2007, when the Islamist Hamas movement took control of the territory. The 1,200 tonne cargo ship was boarded about 16 nautical miles (30km) off the Israeli coast. Israeli military spokeswoman Lt Col Avital Leibovich said the takeover took just minutes, and the ship's captain had gathered the passengers in one area of the vessel. Aerial Footage of IDF Soldiers Boarding the 7th Flotilla Boat without Incident, 5 June 2010 Footage taken by the Israeli military from a helicopter above the Rachel Corrie showed the activists sitting in the middle of the top deck. The ship had previously ignored repeated requests to change course, the Israeli military said. The Cyprus-based Free Gaza Movement is a coalition of pro-Palestinian groups and human rights organisations. Israeli government spokesman Mark Regev accused the group of hypocrisy, saying "While they appear to use the language of human rights in, their propaganda, it appears they have embraced the [Hamas] regime that has no respect for human rights whatsoever," AP said. The Rachel Corrie is carrying hundreds of tonnes of aid, including wheelchairs, medical supplies and cement. Construction materials are banned from entering Gaza by Israel, which says they could be used for military purposes by Hamas. Israel came under fierce criticism after its troops shot dead nine people during a violent confrontation with those on board the Turkish Mavi Marmara in the early hours of Monday Israel says its commandos were attacked with weapons, including knives, and opened fire in self-defence. Activists on the ship say troops shot at them without provocation. The BBC's Jon Donnison in Gaza says Hamas has declared the week's events a victory, and a defeat for Israel. Hamas says the world's attention is now focused on Israel's blockade of the territory, he adds. Israel says its policies towards Gaza will not change while Hamas remains in power and while rockets continue to be fired from Gaza into Israel. Protests over Israeli action against Gaza aid shipments were held in several cities around the world on Saturday, including Dublin, London, Istanbul, Paris and Cairo.

DTN News: China Creates Pirate Copy of Russia’s Su-33 Deck-Based Fighter Jet

DTN News: China Creates Pirate Copy of Russia’s Su-33 Deck-Based Fighter Jet
Source: DTN News / Pravda.Ru
(NSI News Source Info) MOSCOW, Russia - June 5, 2010: China’s Shenyang Aircraft Corporation created a copy of a Russian deck-based Su-33 fighter jet. The Chinese model of the aircraft was called J-15, Interfax reports with reference to the May issue of the Kanwa Asian Defence military publication. The Chinese fighter jet is based on the Soviet T10K training aircraft, which China received from Ukraine. Chinese engineers found it very difficult to solve the problem of folding wings of deck-based fighter jets. Now the problem has been solved. It is not clear yet, if the new plane has performed its first flight yet: the Chinese Air Force does not have its own test center for the sea aviation. China earlier attempted to purchase two Su-33 planes from Russia to study the aircraft performance. Moscow rejected the deal over the fear of technology leak, as it previously happened with the J-11 aircraft, RBC reports. When trying to enter the Chinese arms market, Russia handed over the assembly technology for the Su-27CK fighter jet to China. As a result, China modernized the plane and began to work on a serial production of the J-11 plane. Such a step can give China an opportunity to put competitive pressure on Russia on the arms market of third countries, experts said. Russia started delivering Su-27CK planes to China in 1992. The sides signed an agreement for 76 fighters of the class. In 1995, Russia sold the license for the production of 200 more fighters. China’s Shenyang Aircraft Corporation started assembling them as J-11 with the use of Russian components. By 2003 Russia had delivered 95 packages for J-11 and was supposed to ship 105 more, although China did not sign the contract for them. In 2007, China demonstrated first prototypes of the J-11B jet – nearly the absolute copy of Russia’s Su-27CMK. For the time being, China has launched the serial production of J-10, J-11 and FC-1 fighter jets. These planes bear a striking resemblance to Russia’s Su-27/30 and MiG-29. In the nearest future, China intends to build and sell not less than 1,200 fighters – the prices on them will be significantly lower than those on the Russian “originals.” After the incident with J-11, Russia officially notified China of the violation of international agreements and promised to launch legal proceedings to defend its intellectual property.
China is not the only country that established the pirated production based on Russian technologies. Russia’s defense export giant Rosoboronexport said that over 15 countries (including Bulgaria, Romania, Egypt) produce Kalashnikov assault rifles either on expired licenses or without any license at all. Arms pirates also eye multiple artillery rocket systems, tank equipment and radars. The Sukhoi Su-33 (NATO reporting name: Flanker-D) is a carrier-based multi-role fighter aircraft produced by Russian firm Sukhoi beginning in 1982. It is a derivative of the Su-27 ‘Flanker’ and was initially known as the Su-27K. The main differences from the Su-27 are that the Su-33 can operate from aircraft carriers and is capable of aerial refueling. Unlike comparable American carrier-borne fighters like the F-14 Tomcat, the Su-33 uses a ski-jump instead of catapult for carrier takeoff. Using the ski-jump avoids the high catapult-induced loads, and provides the aircraft with a positive pitch and climb angle upon launch. However, when using a ski-jump, the Su-33 cannot launch at maximum takeoff weight. The Su-33 sports canards that shorten the take-off distance and improve maneuverability, but required reshaping of the leading edge extensions. The canards counter pitch-down force generated by leading and trailing edge flaps reducing approach speed by 1.5 times; they also act as destabilizers in supersonic flight, by reducing pitch trim drag. The wing area was also increased, though the span remained unchanged. The wings were fitted with power-assisted folding, and the vertical tails were shortened to allow the fighter to fit in the typically crowded hangars of an aircraft carrier. The rear radome was shortened and reshaped to allow for the tail hook, as well as to save space inside the hangars. The IRST was moved to provide better downward visibility and an L-shaped retractable refuelling probe was fitted to increase range.

DTN News: Burma's Military Budget To Increase Significantly

DTN News: Burma's Military Budget To Increase Significantly *In 2009, Burma signed a contract with Russia for the purchase of 20 MiG-29 jet fighters at a cost of nearly US $570 million. Source: DTN News / Irrawaddy (NSI News Source Info) YANGON, Myanmar - June 5, 2010: At the four-monthly meeting of Burma's top generals held in Naypyidaw during the last week of May, the junta significantly increased its military budget from last year, according to sources close to the Burmese military. A military source told The Irrawaddy on Thursday that although the amount budgeted to the military is unavailable, it is known to be much larger than last year's military budget. “The money allocated to the military was budgeted under the heading 'Defense Budget', but there was no specific line items for separate expenses,” he said. The military source added, however, that it is generally believed that large military equipment purchases will be made within the next six months. In 2009, Burma signed a contract with Russia for the purchase of 20 MiG-29 jet fighters at a cost of nearly US $570 million. Analysts believe that many of Burma's future military purchases may come from North Korea. According to a report by UN experts obtained by The Associated Press last month, North Korea is exporting nuclear and ballistic missile technology and using multiple intermediaries, shell companies and overseas criminal networks to circumvent UN sanctions. The UN's seven-member panel monitoring the implementation of sanctions against North Korea said its research indicates that Pyongyang is involved in banned nuclear and ballistic activities in Iran, Syria and Burma. In November 2008, Gen Thura Shwe Mann, the regime’s No 3 ranking general, made a secret visit to North Korea and signed a memorandum of understanding, officially formalizing military cooperation between Burma and North Korea with his North Korean counterpart, Gen Kim Kyok-sik. During his trip to Pyongyang, Shwe Mann also visited sites of secret tunnel complexes built into the sides of mountains to store and shield jet aircraft, missiles, tanks and nuclear and chemical weapons. In addition, according to Burmese Maj Sai Thein Win, a former deputy commander of a top-secret military factory who defected and brought with him top secret documents and photographs about Burma's nuclear projects, secret underground bunkers and tunnels have been built at many locations in Burma. Sai Thein Win, who was trained in Burma as a defense engineer and later in Russia as a missile expert, said that about 10,000 Burmese officials have been sent to Russia thus far to study military technology, including nuclear technology. Sai Thein Win also said in a report that Burma is trying to build medium-range missiles such as SCUDs under a memorandum of understanding with North Korea. “Burma wants to have rockets and nuclear warheads. Burma wants to be a nuclear power,” Sai Thein Win said. One reason the regime is able to increase its military budget and import expensive military equipment and technology may be its expected increase in energy revenues. A study by the Washington-based United States Institute of Peace said that Burma's export earnings from the country's growing energy sector will double in the next five years, due mainly to oil and gas transit pipelines now being built from Burma to China. The Institute said the calculation is based on energy exports—mostly gas—accounting for at least 45 percent of the $6.6 billion earnings declared by Burmese interests in 2008. Burma's military regime is infamous for spending a large percentage of its national budget on the military, rather than on education, health and other public services. According to Burma military experts, 40 to 60 percent of the national budget is allocated to the military. In contrast, 0.4 percent of the national budget is spent on healthcare, while 0.5 percent is spent for education, according to a report released in 2007 by the International Institute for Strategic Studies, a think-tank based in London. In other news regarding the four-monthly meeting, according to military sources there was no major military reshuffle in Naypyidaw.

DTN News: Canada Accepts First Of 17 Lockheed Martin C-130J Super Hercules

DTN News: Canada Accepts First Of 17 Lockheed Martin C-130J Super Hercules
Source: DTN News / Lockheed Martin Dt. June 4th, 2010
(NSI News Source Info) MARIETTA, Ga., - June 5, 2010: Canada formally accepted the first of 17 Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] C-130J Super Hercules aircraft today at ceremonies here and at Canadian Forces Base Trenton. Canada finalized its CC-130J contract with Lockheed Martin in December 2007, with a subsequent agreement from the U.S. Air Force to ensure an early delivery of the first two Canadian aircraft. The balance will be delivered by the end of 2012. The CC-130Js (the Canadian designation) are the "stretched" configuration of the C-130J and are of similar specification to those already operated by the U.S. and other worldwide air forces. "This year is the 50th anniversary of the first CC-130 Hercules aircraft accepted by Canada," said the Honourable Peter MacKay, the Canadian Minister of National Defence. "I am proud to mark this milestone by welcoming the J-model Hercules into our fleet – on budget and on schedule – ensuring the Canadian Forces have the equipment it needs to be a modern, multi-role force able to take on the challenges of the 21st century." "Lockheed Martin is proud to again support Canada and the Canadian Forces," said Tony Frese, Lockheed Martin C-130J program director. "The C-130J Super Hercules is an operationally proven platform and the ideal aircraft to replace Canada's existing C 130 fleet. The current C-130s have been Canada's indomitable workhorse for decades and this new aircraft will now meet the demanding tactical airlift needs of the Canadian Forces." The C-130J generates greater operational efficiency than Canada's existing E and H models, by flying further, faster, with more payload and higher reliability. The aircraft's increased performance gives it an enhanced range with a payload capability of over 4,000 nautical miles. In addition, its short-field performance allows the aircraft to engage in direct support missions for frontline forces down to the last tactical mile. C-130Js are currently deployed in several theatres and are operating at a high tempo efficiently and reliably. C-130Js are used daily for troop and equipment re-supply via ground delivery and airdrop, for air-to-air refueling, ground refueling, humanitarian relief and search and rescue. Lockheed Martin recently announced the team of Canadian companies that will provide maintenance and support for Canada's new CC 130J fleet. The initial in-service support (ISS) contract period is for six-and-a-half years from contract award in December 2009 to June 30, 2016. "Through a rigorous and competitive process, we assembled a team to support Canada's CC 130J fleet that rivals any such team in the world," Frese said."This team – as well as the expertise and capabilities in Canada to fulfill our industrial benefits obligation – stands as a testament to the quality of Canada's high-technology industrial base." Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 136,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation reported 2009 sales of $45.2 billion. Media Contact: Peter Simmons
Office: 770-494-6208
Mobile: 678-662-4747

DTN News: Russia Downplays Chinese J-15 Fighter Capabilities

DTN News: Russia Downplays Chinese J-15 Fighter Capabilities
Source: DTN News / RIA Novosti
(NSI News Source Info) MOSCOW, Russia - June 5, 2010: China's J-15 carrier-based fighter will not be able to compete with Russia's Su-33 fighter on global markets because it is inferior to the Russian aircraft, a Russian military analyst said on Friday. China since 2001 has been developing the J-15 naval fighter, which is believed to be a clone of Russia's Su-33 Falcon-D. China bought an Su-33 prototype earlier from Ukraine, and used it to develop the new aircraft. The J-15 is expected to be stationed initially onboard the Chinese Varyag aircraft carrier currently being fitted in the port of Dalian. China bought the unfinished Admiral Kuznetsov class aircraft carrier from Ukraine in 1998. "The Chinese J-15 clone is unlikely to achieve the same performance characteristics of the Russian Su-33 carrier-based fighter, and I do not rule out the possibility that China could return to negotiations with Russia on the purchase of a substantial batch of Su-33s," said Col. (Ret.) Igor Korotchenko, a member of the Defense Ministry's Public Council. The Su-33 is a carrier-based multi-role fighter, which can perform a variety of air superiority, fleet defense, air support and reconnaissance missions. The aircraft entered service with the Russian Navy in 1995 and are currently deployed on board the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier. Korotchenko said China was unlikely to solve technical problems related to the design of the folding wings and to develop a reliable engine for the aircraft, although the first J-15 prototype reportedly made its maiden flight on August 31, 2009, powered by Chinese WS-10 turbofan engines. China and Russia had been in negotiations on the sale of the Su-33 Flanker-D fighters to be used on future Chinese aircraft carriers since 2006, but the talks collapsed over China's request for an initial delivery of two aircraft for a "trial." Russian Defense Ministry sources confirmed that the refusal was due to findings that China had produced its own copycat version of the Su-27SK fighter jet in violation of intellectual property agreements. In 1995, China secured a $2.5-billion production license from Russia to build 200 Su-27SKs, dubbed J-11A, at the Shenyang Aircraft Corp. The deal required the aircraft to be outfitted with Russian avionics, radars and engines. Russia cancelled the arrangement in 2006 after it discovered that China was developing an indigenous version, J-11B, with Chinese avionics and systems. The decision came after China had already produced at least 95 aircraft. Last year, Russia refused again to sell the Su-33 to China even after Beijing had offered to buy 14 of them, saying that at least 24 jets should be sold to recoup production costs.

DTN News: Korean Tensions Top Agenda At Asian Security Forum

DTN News: Korean Tensions Top Agenda At Asian Security Forum
Source: DTN News / By Martin Abbugao (AFP)
(NSI News Source Info) SINGAPORE - June 5, 2010: Tensions on the Korean Peninsula are expected to dominate an Asia-Pacific security forum in Singapore this weekend to be addressed by South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak. US Defence Secretary Robert Gates, South Korean Defence Minister Kim Tae-Young and other top officials will attend the Shangri-La Dialogue organised by the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS). This year's edition of the annual conference comes amid renewed sabre-rattling on the Korean Peninsula following a torpedo attack in March that sank the South Korean warship Cheonan, killing 46 sailors. A multinational investigation team concluded last month that a North Korean submarine torpedoed the Cheonan, prompting Seoul to announce a series of reprisals against its communist neighbour. North Korea has furiously denied involvement and responded to the reprisals with threats of war. Security analysts see the Korean Peninsula as a potential flashpoint for conflict in Asia. The neighbours are still technically at war because the 1950-53 Korean War ended with an armistice, not a peace treaty. The South Korean leader will address the forum late on Friday. Lee is expected to speak about "the threat that North Korea poses to South Korea's security accentuated by the attack on the Cheonan," said Tim Huxley, the Singapore-based IISS executive director for Asia. Lee is also expected to comment on the long-standing problems relating to Pyongyang's efforts to develop nuclear weapons, he said. Huxley said he hoped Lee would also speak about South Korea's "emerging place as a significant power in the Asian region" and its role in the regional security landscape. "South Korea seems sometimes pre-occupied with domestic issues but in the longer term, it is an important economic power with longer-range strategic interests," Huxley told AFP. The forum, which ends Sunday, will provide an opportunity for private meetings of the US, Japanese and South Korean defence chiefs to further coordinate their positions on North Korea, Huxley added. He said the chances of a shooting war on the Korean Peninsula would depend on how aggressive the North is, and how well the US-South Korea defence alliance can deter any planned attack by the communist regime in Pyongyang. The United States will conduct a major anti-submarine naval exercise with South Korea next week in the Yellow Sea in a show of strength after the Cheonan's sinking. A US aircraft carrier, the USS George Washington, will join the drill, leading a battle fleet comprising some 10 ships including an Aegis destroyer and nuclear-powered submarines, South Korea's Yonhap news agency said. The South will deploy a 4,500-ton destroyer, a submarine and F-15K fighter jets. The military exercise "is part of the deterrence posture" of the United States and South Korea, Huxley said. "Hopefully it will make the North see that a policy of aggression will not be worthwhile," he said.

DTN News: Aid Ship 'Defies' Israel Navy, Presses On To Gaza

DTN News: Aid Ship 'Defies' Israel Navy, Presses On To Gaza *Israel against the world - yet again Jerusalem Post - Gil Hoffman Source: DTN News / By Adel Zaanoun (AFP) (NSI News Source Info) GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories - June 5, 2010: The Rachel Corrie aid ship on Saturday ignored a navy military order to stop and pressed on towards Gaza, despite fears of a confrontation with Israeli warships. The latest confrontation comes just five days after Israeli naval commandos boarded another aid ship in a deadly raid which left nine activists dead, most of them Turkish. "We indicated several times to the organisers aboard the ship that they should head to the port of Ashdod as there is a blockade in force on the Gaza Strip, but they ignored our appeals and are continuing to head towards Gaza," a military spokeswoman said. Earlier, a spokesman for the Gaza-based welcoming committee told AFP the Rachel Corrie had been intercepted and all communications with the ship cut. "Several Israeli boats surrounded them between 30 and 35 miles off Gaza and prevented them from reaching Gaza," Amjad al-Shawa said after speaking by telephone with passengers on the boat. In a last communique issued at around 5:38 am (0238 GMT), activist Jenny Graham, who is on board the Rachel Corrie, told organisers the vessel was being approached by two Israeli warships. Graham said equipment on board had been "jammed by the Israeli navy, and that they expected their satellite phone to be jammed soon as well," the Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign said, adding that it was not able to determine the ship's location when it was intercepted. Israeli public radio, which also reported that the ship had been intercepted, said it was being escorted by three navy vessels through a stretch of water some 35 miles from the Egyptian coast. The incident comes at a very sensitive time for Israel, which is contending with the diplomatic fallout of an earlier raid on a flotilla of Gaza-bound aid boats, which left nine people dead, most of them Turks. Despite an international outcry over the deadly commando operation, Israel has vowed to block all attempts to reach Gaza by sea in defiance of the tight blockade it has imposed on the impoverished territory since 2006. "I have just told the Irish foreign ministry director general that the ship will not be able to travel to Gaza without first being inspected," Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said in remarks broadcast late on Friday. Irish Foreign Minister Micheal Martin urged Israel to show restraint, saying: "The Rachel Corrie should be allowed to proceed to Gaza and to unload its humanitarian cargo." Activists on board the ship had said they would be prepared to let the cargo be inspected by "an independent international body" -- preferably the United Nations. "We are not afraid," Irish Nobel Peace Prize winner Mairead Maguire told Ireland's RTE public radio by phone late on Friday. "We started out to deliver this cargo to the people of Gaza and to break the siege of Gaza, that is what we want to do," the 66-year-old said as the vessel steamed towards the Hamas-controlled Palestinian territory. Washington said on Friday it was trying to help avert another violent clash at sea involving Israel, with National Security Council spokesman Mike Hammer saying the ship should dock at Ashdod. "In the interest of the safety of all involved, and the safe transmission of assistance to the people of Gaza, we strongly encourage those on board the Rachel Corrie and other vessels to sail to Ashdod to deliver their materials to Gaza." Israel had warned it would stop the Rachel Corrie -- a 1,200-tonne cargo ship named after a US activist killed in 2003 as she tried to prevent an Israeli bulldozer from razing a Palestinian home. Bulent Yildirim, head of the Turkish Islamic charity IHH said activists used iron bars in self-defence after commandos fired indiscriminately when they stormed the Turkish ferry Mavi Marmara.