The INSIDER daily digest -- June 20, 2024

By John Liang / June 20, 2024 at 2:30 PM

This Thursday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on the Air Force's F-22 Raptor program, a lawmaker urging the Missile Defense Agency to consider Ft. Drum, NY as a possible missile defense base and more.

The Government Accountability Office this week released a report on the Air Force's F-22 fighter program:

GAO: Air Force F-22 retirement plan is unsubstantial

The Air Force did not make necessary considerations before requesting to divest its fleet of Block 20 F-22 Raptors, according to a report released Tuesday from the government's top watchdog.

Document: GAO report on the F-22 program

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) recently urged Missile Defense Agency Director Lt. Gen. Heath Collins to commit to using $10 million appropriated for planning and design of a notional East Coast site to execute work with a Ft. Drum-specific blueprint:

MDA pressured to commit to Ft. Drum, new classified assessment questions NY site

An influential House lawmaker is stepping up pressure on the Missile Defense Agency to tailor designs for a notional East Coast missile defense site to a location at Ft. Drum, NY, even as lawmakers last month disclosed a classified Pentagon assessment that raises questions about the efficacy of the upstate New York location to protect the nation.

Defense Innovation Unit Chief of Policy Sunmin Kim spoke about the Pentagon's Replicator program at Defense One's Tech Summit this week:

Replicator has identified testing capability gaps within DOD

The Replicator initiative has unearthed testing and evaluation infrastructure capability gaps in the Defense Department, which has required the Defense Innovation Unit to work closely with the Pentagon to test capabilities, according to a DIU official.

Air Force Lt. Gen. Adrian Spain, deputy chief of staff for operations, spoke at an Air and Space Forces Association event this week:

Air Force aiming for 24 deployable combat wings; first expected by 2026

The Air Force wants to generate 24 deployable combat wings as part of its massive structural overhaul to ensure the service is postured for success in a potential fight with a near peer adversary.

Earlier this month, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Lisa Franchetti and Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Eric Smith signed a "Memorandum of Understanding on Amphibious Warfare Ship Terms of Reference." The document follows an amphibious ship readiness study directed by the two service chiefs earlier this year:

Navy and Marine Corps adopt new guidance to streamline amphib readiness criteria

The Navy and Marine Corps have adopted a new guidance document intended to streamline amphibious warship readiness criteria in a bid to improve fleet performance and facilitate better planning and joint decision making, according to a Monday announcement from the two services.

More coverage from this week's Government Accountability Office annual weapon systems assessment report:

Fielding for B-52 engine replacement delayed 3 years

The B-52 Commercial Engine Replacement Program’s schedule for initial operational capability slipped by about three years into 2033, according to a Government Accountability Office report.

GAO: Flight III DDGs could deliver six-to-25 months late

The Navy’s Flight III Arleigh Burke-class destroyer program could see delivery delays of six-to-25 months for the 13 vessels following lead ship Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125), according to the Government Accountability Office’s annual weapon system report, which points to performance issues with the program's two prime contractors.

GAO: Soonest Dark Eagle will be equipped for testing is summer of 2025

Next summer is the soonest the Army could test an initial Dark Eagle unit with a full complement of missiles, assuming the service -- and Lockheed Martin, maker of the new two-stage missile and bespoke launcher -- can successfully demonstrate an end-to-end flight of the Long Range Hypersonic Weapon.

Document: GAO's annual weapon system assessment report

Some Army tactical truck news:

Tactical truck program to include autonomous movement and predictive logistics capabilities

The Army’s program to develop a new tactical truck will include capabilities to move autonomously and predict when to conduct maintenance, according to a program official.