The Defense Department is now required to post all reports to Congress on a "publicly accessible Internet website," whether they're requested or not.
This year's national defense authorization act, signed into law by President Obama Dec. 26, includes Senate Armed Services Committee language requiring development of a new cyber attack deterrence policy. The concept of cyber deterrence can be controversial, with critics worried that genuine cyber attacks get conflated with data theft and that established mechanisms for deterrence such as broadcasting offensive capabilities could backfire on the United States.
The last three ethnic Uighur Chinese nationals detained at Guantanamo Bay were released and resettled in Slovakia, the Defense Department announced Dec. 31.
The Defense Department could improve its acquisition process by relying more on cost-reimbursement contracts for systems developments, among other things, a Dec. 17 Center for the Business of Government paper says. The report, Eight Actions to Improve Defense Acquisition, was authored by former Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Jacques Gansler and University of Maryland professor William Lucyshyn.
The Coast Guard's wish to possess all 14 available excess Air Force C-27J aircraft is likely to be granted as part of the compromise national defense authorization bill for fiscal 2014 passed by the House and set for a vote in the Senate. The bill (H.R. 3304) would enact a deal worked out between the Coast Guard, the Forest Service--which was also in the running to receive the aircraft--and the Air Force.
Defense Department and Homeland Security officials defended building security progress made in the wake of the September Navy Yard shooting, but told a Senate panel Dec. 17 that metal detectors would be a step too far. Since the Navy Yard attack, the Pentagon has conducted and internal reviews of gaps and deficiencies and shared other agency best practices.
The National Guard didn't validate its need for more personnel through the Defense Department's standard external review process, a recently released Nov. 12 Government Accountability Office report says.
The House on Thursday, approved a defense spending bill that would, among other things, ensure troops will receive a 1 percent pay raise in 2014 and ease restrictions on transferring Guantanamo Bay prisoners to other countries.
The Defense Intelligence Agency recently launched a new webpage to keep industry, academia and other agencies informed of the technologies and capabilities it needs. The webpage, dubbed Needipedia, was created to help DIA bypass what Dan Doney, the agency's chief innovation officer, called a "quite lengthy and painful" process for finding new capabilities.
The USCGC Polar Star, the service's one and only operational heavy icebreaker, set out from Seattle, carrying onboard eight million gallons of fuel for delivery to McMurdo Station and other U.S. scientific outposts in the Antarctic. The 6 foot icebreaking capability ship recently underwent an overhaul intended to give its 37-year-old hull another seven to 10 years of service.