The Insider

The INSIDER daily digest -- Oct. 12, 2017

October 12, 2017 |
John Liang

This week's AUSA conference continues to dominate the INSIDER Daily Digest, along with budget news from Congress, Air Force C-130 aircraft and missile defense.

Our reporters spent the last three days at AUSA. We've compiled our complete coverage of the event here. Our most recent stories are below:

DOD acquisition chief sets targets for streamlining contracting, focuses on software development

The Pentagon's new acquisition chief is seeking to cut in half the time it takes to award contracts, hinting at new pilot programs and highlighting software development as a significant capability gap for the military.

Lord promises more commercial approach to managing Pentagon

Ellen Lord, the new top acquisition official in the Pentagon, said in her first public event Oct. 11 she is drawing on her industry experience to take a more commercial approach to the Defense Department.

ARCIC, RDECOM chiefs endorse cross-functional team effort

Senior leaders' plans to reform the Army's approach to modernization are intended not only to speed acquisition, but to enable the service to better compete for resources, according to two officials.

Army G-1 outlines result of effort to meet end strength targets by end of FY-17

The Army's effort to meet its fiscal year 2017 end strength goal of 1.018 million soldiers concluded last month, resulting in a final number "less than three-tenths of a percent" short, according to Lt. Gen. Thomas Seamands, deputy chief of staff (G-1).

Some budget comments from the top Democrat in the House:

Pelosi: Democrats will insist on non-defense boost to match increased defense spending

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said Thursday Democrats would fight for equal increases for defense and non-defense spending as negotiations for a final fiscal year 2018 appropriations package get underway.

A brief preview of what will be in tomorrow's issue of Inside the Air Force:

Air Force crafting strategy for fleet-wide C-130J retrofit effort

The Air Force wants to retrofit its more than 240 C-130J airlifters with a broad slate of upgrades to meet changing military airspace requirements and incorporate mission-specific enhancements and deficiencies corrections identified since the jet was fielded in 2016.

EC-X completed PDR last month under contract worth up to $150 million

L3 Technologies and the Air Force in late September completed a preliminary design review to move legacy EC-130H Compass Call equipment to the Gulfstream G550, after L3 submitted a report to the Air Force that determined the business jet is the best platform for the electronic-attack mission, according to an L3 Technologies spokeswoman.

NATO missile defense news:

NATO missile defense task group tracks ballistic missile targets, intercepts cruise missile targets

The first-ever deployment of a NATO Integrated Air and Missile Defense task group consisting of ships from more than a dozen countries, sailing in the rough seas of the North Atlantic as part of a major international missile defense exercise, has tracked ballistic-missile targets and intercepted cruise missile targets in the initial scenarios of an event that aims to forge a collective shield.