Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Tweets For Today

Picture Of The Day

Ethiopians who fled the ongoing fighting in Tigray region, carry their belongings from a boat after crossing the Setit river on the Sudan-Ethiopia border in Hamdayet village in eastern Kassala state, Sudan, November 22, 2020. REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah 

WNU Editor: The above picture is from this photo-gallery .... Thousands flee fighting in Ethiopia, cross border to Sudan (Reuters).

Recent U.S. Army Exercise In Romania Sends A Message To Russia That Their Bases In Crimea Are Within Range Of U.S. Rockets

Soldiers assigned to 1st Battalion, 77th Field Artillery Regiment unload their HIMARS from 352nd Special Operations Wing's U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II as part of Exercise Rapid Falcon in Romania on Nov. 19, 2020. U.S. ARMY PHOTO BY SPC. RYAN BARNES 

The U.S. Army sneaked a pair of long-range rocket launchers near Russia’s Black Sea outpost on Thursday, fired off a few rockets then hurried the launchers back to the safety of their base in Germany. All within a few hours. 

The one-day mission by the Army’s new Europe-based artillery brigade was practice for high-tech warfare. It clearly also was a message for Moscow. The U.S. Army in Europe has restored its long-range firepower. And it wants the Russians to know. 

The Nov. 19 mission began at Ramstein air base in Germany. Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 77th Field Artillery Regiment, 41st Field Artillery Brigade loaded two wheeled High-Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, each with three crew, onto U.S. Air Force MC-130J transports. Read more .... 

WNU Editor: To send a message to the Kremlin the U.S. decides to fly to Romania (from Germany) a pair of U.S. long-range rocket launchers. They then fire a few rockets into the Black Sea, and after accomplishing that they then pack-up and fly back to Germany all within a few hours. 

I do not know what the Kremlin is thinking, but I would not be surprised if they were underwhelmed. 

Monday, November 23, 2020

U.S. Hypersonic Weapons Development -- News Roundup November 23, 2020

Artist's impression of hypersonic weapons. (Raytheon) 

This kind of technical focus seeks to build upon fast emerging progress in the area of autonomy. 

The Pentagon is looking to engineer self-guiding hypersonic weapons with emerging levels of autonomy to quickly adjust course in flight as needed, adapt to emerging targets, avoid defensive threats and accelerate the so-called “kill chain.”

Of course, humans would make the necessary command and control decisions when it comes to the use of lethal force, per existing Pentagon doctrine, yet enabling missiles traveling at hypersonic speeds to draw upon advanced sensors and guidance technology could, for instance, enable an attack to rapidly adjust to an enemy countermeasure, destroy an approaching interceptor or even alter its trajectory to avoid any impediments to attack. 

Read more .... 

 U.S. Hypersonic Weapons Development -- News Roundup November 23, 2020 

Joe Biden Nominates Former CIA Deputy Director Avril Haines To Be The Next Director Of National Intelligence


US News and World Report: Biden to Nominate Avril Haines for DNI 

A former Obama administration national security legal counsel and deputy adviser, Avril Haines becomes the first woman to oversee the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. 

PRESIDENT-ELECT Joe Biden on Monday announced he intends to nominate former CIA Deputy Director Avril Haines to become the next director of national intelligence, the first woman elevated to the position.

The announcement also confirmed prior reports Biden plans to nominate former top aide and close confidante Antony Blinken as secretary of state, career foreign service officer Linda Thomas-Greenfield as ambassador to the U.N. and Obama administration veteran Jake Sullivan as national security adviser. 

The moves come as Biden faces increased pressure both inside and outside his transition team to appoint candidates who will appease the more progressive elements of the Democratic Party while also ensuring they could receive confirmation from a Senate that may retain its Republican majority. 

Read more .... 

 More News On Joe Biden Nominating Former CIA Deputy Director Avril Haines To Be The Next Director Of National Intelligence 

Expect Side Effects From The Covid-19 Vaccine

A volunteer is injected with a vaccine as he participates in a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination study at the Research Centers of America, in Hollywood, Florida, September 24, 2020. Marco Bello, Reuters 

 * The CDC must be transparent about the side effects people may experience after getting their first shot of a coronavirus vaccine, doctors urged during a meeting Monday with CDC advisors. 
 * Dr. Sandra Fryhofer said that both Pfizer’s and Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccines require two doses and she worries whether her patients will come back for a second dose because of potentially unpleasant side effects after the first shot. 
 * Both companies acknowledged that their vaccines could induce side effects that are similar to symptoms associated with mild Covid-19, such as muscle pain, chills and headache. 

Public health officials and drugmakers must be transparent about the side effects people may experience after getting their first shot of a coronavirus vaccine, doctors urged during a meeting Monday with CDC advisors as states prepare to distribute doses as early as next month. 

Dr. Sandra Fryhofer of the American Medical Association noted that both Pfizer’s and Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccines require two doses at varying intervals. As a practicing physician, she said she worries whether her patients will come back for a second dose because of the potentially unpleasant side effects they may experience after the first shot. 

Read more .... 

WNU Editor: No one said this was going to be easy.

Why Has The U.S. Deployed B-52s To The Middle East?

A U.S. B52 plane (R) flies during Exercise Eager Lion at one of the Jordanian military bases in Zarqa, east of Amman, Jordan, May 24, 2016. (photo credit: MUHAMMAD HAMED / REUTERS) 

The shake-up and the deployment of the strategic heavy bombers, changes in Iraq, and in Afghanistan as well as question marks about the US role in Syria. 

American B-52s, the massive strategic bombers, arrived in the Middle East on Saturday. They are part of the Fifth Bomb Wing at Minot AFB in North Dakota. 

These veteran, giant aircraft were last deployed in the region in May 2019 and the US Central Command says they are here to “deter aggression and reassure US partners and allies.” 

The B-52s have been sent to the region as the US appears to be drawing down forces in Iraq. The Pentagon has said that hundreds of troops are leaving Iraq and Afghanistan. 

As the US seeks to end twenty years of involvement in Afghanistan, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with Taliban officials this weekend, an interesting change of US policy from years ago, when the US was at war with them. But the US may soon be claiming to work with Taliban “moderates” against Afghan extremists, or hand Kabul back to the Taliban. 

Read more .... 

WNU Editor: This is all for show. To reassure allies and to warn adversaries.

Mozambique And Tanzania To Launch Joint Operations To Combat An Islamist Insurgency In Mozambique's Cabo Delgado Province

Reuters: Mozambique, Tanzania to launch joint operations against insurgents 

MAPUTO, Nov 23 (Reuters) - Mozambique and Tanzania are to launch joint operations to combat an Islamist insurgency under an agreement that will also see some 500 suspected insurgents extradited, Mozambique’s state-owned newspaper Noticias said on Monday. 

The three-year-old insurgency is concentrated in Mozambique’s northernmost province of Cabo Delgado, separated from Tanzania by the Rovuma River and home to gas developments worth $60 billion.

In October, however, it spilled across the border when some 300 insurgents attacked a Tanzanian village. 

Many of the insurgency’s recruits are also thought to come from Tanzania. 

Read more .... 

 More News On Mozambique And Tanzania Agreeing To Launch Joint Operations To Combat An Islamist Insurgency In Mozambique's Cabo Delgado Province 

US Secret Service Members Asked About Protecting Soon-To-Be-Former President Trump Full Time In Florida

President Donald Trump holds a 'Make America Great Again' cap while arriving to board Air Force One as he departs Florida for campaign travel to North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin at Miami International Airport in Miami, Nov. 2, 2020. Carlos Barria/Reuters 

Agents in Trump's detail have been asked about relocating to West Palm Beach. 

As states begin to certify election results that seal a victory for President-elect Joe Biden, even though Donald Trump hasn't conceded there is one clear sign his post-presidency life is taking shape: Secret Service agents in the president's detail are being asked whether they're interested in transferring to Palm Beach, Florida, sources have told ABC News. 

The Secret Service's Miami field office also has begun looking at physical reinforcements to Mar-a-Largo, the president's club to which he refers as "the winter White House," the sources added. These moves are considered unofficial as Trump has yet to concede to Biden. 

Read more .... 

WNU Editor: Palm Beach is a better (and nicer) place to stay than Washington D.C..

Ethiopia - Tigray War News Updates -- November 23, 2020


ADDIS ABABA/NAIROBI (Reuters) - Ethiopian federal forces were encircling the Tigray region’s capital from around 50 km (30 miles) on Monday, the government said, after giving the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) a 72-hour surrender ultimatum.

“The beginning of the end is within reach,” government spokesman Redwan Hussein said of the nearly three-week-old offensive that has destabilised Ethiopia and spilled into some Horn of Africa neighbours. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has told the TPLF, which had been ruling the mountainous northern zone of 5 million people, to lay down arms by Wednesday or face a final assault on Mekelle, a highland city of half a million people. TPLF leader Debretsion Gebremichael denied that Mekelle was surrounded and told Reuters the ultimatum threat was a cover for government forces to regroup after what he described as defeats on three fronts. Reuters could not verify the latest statements. 

Read more .... 

 Ethiopia - Tigray War News Updates -- November 23, 2020