Sneaky Drones for U.S. Navy Jamming Planes
Northrop Grumman is trying to convince the U.S. Navy to transform the branch’s EA-18G Growler electronic-warfare planes into motherships for small, slow-flying unmanned aerial vehicles that could extend the distance at which Growler crews can pinpoint enemy radars. The 12-foot-long “Dash X” drone fits inside the military’s Tactical Munition... Read more
The U.S. Navy Is Turning Its Stealth Destroyers Into Ship-Killers
The U.S. Navy is transforming its Zumwalt-class land-attack destroyers into surface-warfare ships whose main mission will be sinking other vessels at sea. In swapping the job of the three-ship class, the Navy is admitting that its original concept for the 600-foot, stealthy warships is no longer viable. “We see... Read more
Check Out This Exquisite Art From ‘The Forever War’ Graphic Novel
It’s too neat and tidy to say combat causes post-traumatic stress. There is something to be said for the alienation which ex-soldiers experience in an atomized, individualistic society after leaving a tightly-knit group of warriors — who share deep bonds and loyalties between them borne from shared experiences. Civilian... Read more
The U.S. Navy Is Planning Its Next Guided-Missile Submarine
The U.S. Navy is mulling a plan to build a new class of guided-missile submarines to replace today’s four-strong Ohio-class SSGNs beginning in the 2030s. The sailing branch is worried that not replacing the SSGNs could exacerbate a looming, medium-term reduction in undersea cruise-missile capacity. The Tactical Submarine Evolution... Read more
The Seven Most Dangerous Su-27s in the World
On June 9, 2017, examples of all three of the U.S. Air Force’s heavy bombers — the swing-wing B-1, the stealthy B-2 and the lumbering B-52 — gathered in international air space over the Baltic Sea for a rare photo-op with allied fighters and patrol planes. They had a... Read more
The Pentagon Has Been Working on a New Air-to-Air Missile
The U.S. military has been quietly working on a new long-range air-to-air missile since at least 2016, budget documents reveal. The Office of the Secretary of Defense spent nearly $10 million in 2016 and 2017 developing concepts and technologies for the so-called “Long Range Engagement Weapon.” “This project will... Read more
A Brief History of Weird Shoot-Downs
This story originally appeared on Nov. 24, 2013. On Sept. 25, an Afghan air force MD-530F helicopter crewed by an Afghan student pilot and his American instructor touched down on a hilltop near Shindand air base, in western Afghanistan, as part of routine training. An Improvised Explosive Device exploded,... Read more
These Madmen Flew B-52 Bombers at Wave-Top Heights
This story originally appeared on July 22, 2013. 160 feet from tip to tail. 185 feet across. 240 tons of metal, fuel, bombs and human flesh traveling at 650 miles per hour. You wouldn’t think something so big, moving so fast, would also be capable of skimming the ocean... Read more
Jet Fighter Influence
This story originally appeared on June 4, 2013. Sometime in the spring of 2012, Al Bunting received a message imploring him to publicly endorse America’s warplane of the future. Bunting, a retired senior Air Force officer and administrator for the tiny New Jersey coastal town of Sea Girt, was... Read more
China’s Accidental Spies
This story originally appeared on June 5, 2013. The jet fighter suddenly appears directly overhead, twin engines roaring, landing gear dangling like claws, diamond-shaped wings tracing an impressive black silhouette against the grayish sky. The airplane, displaying the red-star insignia of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, whips past and... Read more