Pentagon

May 19, 2017
There has been a revolution in the cost of space launch for civilian purposes and defense during the last decade.
May 19, 2017
When an industry experiences significant performance improvements and simultaneous cost reductions, disruptive innovation follows. The results ripple across sectors and drive the global economy forward. Steam power, automobiles, and personal computers are classic cases.
May 19, 2017
SpaceX launched the classified National Reconnaissance Office NROL-76 satellite into orbit before successfully landing the first stage of its Falcon 9 rocket at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center May 1.
May 12, 2017
With the help of big data analytics, the Department of Defense Insider Threat Management and Analysis Center — better known as the DITMAC — is looking to transform the DoD’s approach to the threats trusted insiders can pose to personnel and information.
April 23, 2017
In 2010, then-Deputy Secretary of Defense William J. Lynn III made a pivotal decision for the future of cyberspace and the U.S. military: He saw to it that the U.S.
April 23, 2017
The isolation of cyber as an entirely independent domain of warfare is both inaccurate and dangerous. Today, the Pentagon faces an essential task, to integrate cyber capabilities with warfighting in the physical world.
March 28, 2017
President Donald Trump’s defense budget proposal for fiscal year 2018 calls for $54 billion in additional spending, but it is not yet clear where this new funding will come from or what it will be used for.
March 28, 2017
Twenty-six years after the end of the Cold War, the United States once again must prepare for great power competition and confrontation. Russian aggression along NATO’s eastern front presents military challenges to European security not seen in decades.
March 28, 2017
The United States has been at war for 15 years, and at the same time, it has attempted to modernize and maintain readiness. President Donald Trump has made restoring the military a key policy goal, and his recent budget proposal intends to increase the size of the military.
February 19, 2017
Compared to the rest of his proposed cabinet, President Donald Trump's pick of retired Marine Corps General James Mattis for Secretary of Defense has been one of his least controversial.
February 17, 2017
In the wake of retired Lieutenant General Michael Flynn’s resignation as National Security Advisor on Monday over his
February 17, 2017
The arcane art of measuring the health of civil-military relations is experiencing a renaissance.
February 17, 2017
Compared to most of his proposed cabinet, President Donald Trump's pick of retired Marine Corps General James Mattis for Secretary of Defense has been one of the least controversial.
January 24, 2017
For a moment, try to ignore President Donald Trump’s tweets and rambling speeches and let’s look at what the Trump administration may be thinking about when it comes to his campaign promise to rebuild what he has termed “our depleted military.”
January 15, 2017
Bob Work, the Deputy Secretary of Defense, will tell you the Third Offset is the next generation of warfare. It may take at least ten years but it will showcase the rise of the machine, and the decline of the human in the business of operating weapons systems.
January 15, 2017
Imagine a weapon that strikes on its own, without the slightest hint of human judgment or compassion. It’s a chilling prospect, and not so far in the future unless the world calls a halt to such weapons’ development.
January 15, 2017
War, often rationalized as an extension of policy by violent means, has always been a deeply human experience. It defines much of human history and, unsurprisingly, changes in technology accompany—and are often driven by—adaptations in the conduct of warfare.
January 13, 2017
Electromagnetic Railgun (EMR) has attracted new interest this year as the Office of Naval Research (ONR) continues to test its prototype 32-megajoule railgun system, which can launch a projectile at roughly Mach 7 at a range of over 100 miles.
January 13, 2017
The concept of an electromagnetic railgun (EMR) is over 100 years old and has been posited as a revolutionary technology in fields ranging from missile defense, to lowering the cost of orbital launches and igniting fusion reactions.
January 13, 2017
With electromagnetic railgun systems (EMRS), “faster than a speeding bullet” takes on new meaning.
January 5, 2017
As the United States’ crisis response force, the Marine Corps prioritizes readiness above capability, capacity, or any other goal.
January 5, 2017
With important global roles during times of peace and war, U.S. Navy ships and sailors must be ready to deploy anywhere in the world on short notice.
January 5, 2017
The crash of a MV-22B off of Okinawa on December 13, 2016 occurred during one of the most difficult tasks a Marine aviator can do in peacetime: night time midair refueling.
January 1, 2017
The crystal ball may be unusually cloudy when it comes to predicting defense technology and acquisition trends for 2017, but the causes of this cloudiness are clear.
January 1, 2017
How can the military fund its current forces while preparing for the future? There’s no simple answer to such a question. 2016 was a mixed bag for America’s military planning and largest procurement programs.
December 22, 2016
The size of the army matters—but technology wins wars. At the height of the Roman Empire, Roman Legions armed with arrows, long-staffs, and shields devastated the more numerous but ill-equipped barbarian hordes.
December 22, 2016
Directed-energy weapons have been an ambition of militaries across the world, since Archimedes focused the sun to set fire to Roman ships in 212 B.C.
December 22, 2016
What could possibly make the F-35 an even more advanced jet fighter? Lasers, according to the U.S. Air Force.
December 6, 2016
President-elect Donald Trump has called his chosen Defense Secretary, retired Marine General James Mattis “the real deal,” but after January 20, will President Trump, an amateur when it comes to national security issues, follow the advice of the 66-year-old, experienced, warrior-diplomat?
November 24, 2016
For this year’s Thanksgiving Day feature, The Cipher Brief revisits its coverage of the innovation and procurement challenges behind the F-35 Lighting II. As production ramps up and the U.S.
November 24, 2016
For this year’s Thanksgiving Day feature, The Cipher Brief revisits its coverage of the innovation and procurement challenges behind the F-35 Lighting II. As production ramps up and the U.S.
November 23, 2016
Secretary of Defense Ash Carter firmly believes that in order for the U.S. armed forces to maintain their global preeminence, they must innovate at a level—and pace—beyond what has been required in the past.
November 23, 2016
Since Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work discussed the Third Offset at a talk given in January of 2015, the concept has been the focus of nu
November 23, 2016
The Department of Defense’s (DoD) Third Offset Strategy has been a subject of considerable confusion since its rollout in late 2014, with Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work, its key architect and primary champion, working hard to clarify the path forward that Third Offset charts for defense
November 20, 2016
As President-elect Donald Trump assembles his national security team, The Cipher Brief met with one prospective nominee, General Jack Keane, former Vice Chief of Staff of the United States Army and member of The Cipher Brief’s network. He had just met with the Trump team whe
November 20, 2016
Should humans delegate the responsibility of decisions over life and death to computer algorithms? The answer is not as simple as it seems—and it is the fundamental question concerning the military application of artificial intelligence in the future.
November 20, 2016
Discussions on artificial intelligence (AI) too often revolve around concerns about the sensationalist threat of “killer robots,” usually featured in science-fiction films or computer games. Killing is depicted as easy and rapid, done by steel-clad monsters with super-human abilities.
November 20, 2016
New technologies are changing the face of future warfare and few will be as impactful as the fusion of artificial intelligence into weapons systems.
August 23, 2016
“Superficial and emotional” was the way retired Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey described the current presidential campaign discussion of military affairs in an interview published in the current, September-October issue of Foreign Affairs.
May 23, 2017
President Donald Trump has promised the U.S. military "beautiful" planes, ships, and equipment, but his $603 billion, 2018 defense budget offers only a modest build-up, experts say.
May 10, 2017
President Donald Trump has to make a decision soon: what will he do in Afghanistan? The U.S. is now in its 16th year in the country, and top military and foreign policy advisors are advocating for an expanded military role.
May 2, 2017
From kamikaze drones to prototypes using facial recognition technology to help protect troops, a group of Georgetown University students enrolled in a class dubbed, “Hacking for Defense,” spent a semester developing innovative solutions to rapidly solve major national security problems.
April 20, 2017
The modern data center is evolving like few ever thought possible, and this progression is in play across the public and private sector for good reason.
April 9, 2017
Less than two months after taking office, U.S. President Donald Trump’s approach to drone strikes appears to be taking shape.
April 4, 2017
In a world where globalization makes it possible for adversaries to compete with American technologies, the United States must consistently innovate and adopt new tools and methods to stay ahead in the national security space. 
March 16, 2017
President Donald Trump released his $1.5 trillion budget on Thursday, a blueprint that would boost military and border security spending as it makes deep funding cuts to United States diplomacy and foreign aid that experts say could harm national security.
January 27, 2017
Identifying and obtaining innovation from the commercial sector has been an ongoing challenge for the Department of Defense (DoD).
January 24, 2017
When defense contractor Harold Martin was charged with the alleged theft of highly classified documents from the National Security Agency (NSA), federal prosecutors deemed the potential crime “breathtaking” in scope.
January 12, 2017
Retired Gen.
January 3, 2017
As 2017 begins, it is worth reflecting on the current state  and future direction of Department of Defense (DoD) acquisition.

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