The Insider

By John Liang
January 23, 2023 at 1:40 PM

The bulk of this Monday INSIDER Daily Digest has news from the Pentagon's latest operational test and evaluation report.

We start off with a look at DOT&E's evaluation of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program:

DOT&E: F-35 Block 4 testing 'deficient,' JSE conclusion date 'at risk'

The F-35 Joint Program Office's efforts to upgrade jets with Block 4 software are "deficient" and its goal of concluding Joint Simulation Environment testing later this year is "at risk," according to a new Pentagon report.

. . . followed by the Marine Corps' Amphibious Combat Vehicle program:

ACV-C effective as a stationary command post, but not as a mobile one, DOT&E report says

The Marine Corps' Amphibious Combat Vehicle is operationally effective as a stationary command post, but not as a mobile one, according to an annual report from the Pentagon's chief weapons tester.

. . . the Army's Stryker Common Remotely Operated Weapon Station-Javelin program:

DOT&E recommends more testing for CROW-J vehicles

The Army should establish a failure review board for the Stryker Common Remotely Operated Weapon Station-Javelin to understand why tank-killing technology, mounted on a wheeled vehicle and which commanders say is urgently needed, did not pass muster during operational testing, according to the Pentagon's top weapons tester.

. . . the Air Force's newest training aircraft:

T-7 FRP re-baselined to FY-26, DOT&E report says

The T-7 Red Hawk's schedule has been re-baselined to support a milestone C decision in fiscal year 2024 and a full-rate production decision in FY-26, according to a report from the Pentagon's chief weapons tester.

. . . the Army's Integrated Visual Augmentation System:

Top weapons tester urges Army to fix IVAS deficiencies

In an annual testing report released Friday, the Defense Department's chief weapon tester is calling on the Army to fix deficiencies with the Integrated Visual Augmentation System that were discovered during during demonstrations last year.

. . . the Ford-class aircraft carrier:

DOT&E: Flight system reliability challenges continue for Ford

The first-in-class aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) continues to struggle with the reliability of its flight operations systems, according to an annual report from the Pentagon's chief weapons tester.

. . . the Navy's F/A-18E/F Super Hornet fighter:

Navy's Super Hornet infrared sensor plagued with continual delays

Operational testing of the Navy's newest version of the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet infrared sensor has been pushed back to the second quarter of fiscal year 2024 -- marking another delay in the program.

. . . and hypersonic weapons:

DOD readies first-ever East Coast long-range offensive hypersonic weapon test

The Defense Department is readying a first-ever hypersonic weapon test over the Atlantic Ocean, preparing to launch a rocket from Florida that will loft a glide vehicle thousands of miles into the open water in a high-stakes assessment that aims to validate design of a new, two-stage booster paired with the ultra-fast maneuvering payload.

Last but by no means least, a non-DOT&E-report-related story on zero-trust systems:

Can zero trust be done in the cloud? NSA will hack cloud vendors to find out

Starting this spring, "red team" hackers from the National Security Agency, and potentially hackers from the military services, will attack four Pentagon cloud service providers' zero-trust systems in each of the companies' cloud infrastructures.

By Dan Schere
January 23, 2023 at 12:27 PM

The Army plans to replenish the 50 Bradley Fighting Vehicles it is sending to Ukraine starting in fiscal year 2025 with the newest version of the vehicle, according to a service official.

The Pentagon announced on Jan. 6 that it would be sending 50 of the M2A2 version of the vehicles to Ukraine as part of a $3 billion security assistance package. This was the first time the United States had included Bradleys in a Ukrainian aid package since the beginning of the Russian invasion nearly a year ago.

According to a statement from Army spokeswoman Ellen Lovett provided to Inside Defense last week, the service will begin receiving M2A4 Bradley replacements starting in FY-25. All replacements will have been received by FY-26, she said.

Last week, DOD announced another Ukrainian military aid package worth $2.5 billion, which includes 59 Bradleys.

The M2A4 Bradley is a medium armored vehicle that is completely digital and provides cross-country mobility, mounted firepower, communications and protection to mechanized infantry, according to the Army. It has upgraded engine and transmission, better track and improved torsion bars, road arms and shock absorbers.

The first unit to be equipped with an M2A4 Bradley was a Third Infantry Division unit at Ft. Stewart, Ga, and the service plans to acquire 700 of them through 2029, The Army Times reported in April 2022.

Last week, Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville said that the service should avoid purchasing “new, old stuff” when replenishing weapons and supplies that have been included in Ukrainian aid packages.

The Bradley will eventually be replaced by the Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle. Five companies submitted proposals for the detailed design and prototype build and test phases of the competition late last year.

The Army expects to issue up to 3 contracts for these phases of the OMFV competition in the third quarter of FY-23, according to Ashley John, a spokeswoman for the Program Executive Office for Ground Combat Systems.

By Tony Bertuca
January 23, 2023 at 5:00 AM

Think tanks around the Washington area are scheduled to host several national security discussions this week, while senior Pentagon officials speak at a space conference.


The American Enterprise Institute hosts a conversation with Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) on U.S. military readiness.

The National Security Space Association hosts the Defense Intelligence and Space Conference in Chantilly, VA. The event runs through Wednesday.


The Air Force Association hosts a discussion with the deputy chief of staff for strategic deterrence and nuclear integration, and with the commander of the Twentieth Air Force, Air Force Global Strike Command.


The Heritage Foundation hosts a discussion with the CEO of Lockheed Martin on U.S. weapons supply chain issues.

The Center for Strategic and International Studies hosts a discussion with former Defense Secretary Mark Esper.

The Center for Strategic and International Studies hosts a discussion on Arctic security one year after the war in Ukraine.


The Hudson Institute hosts a discussion on “fielding transformational capability without transforming acquisition."

By Thomas Duffy
January 20, 2023 at 1:42 PM

This Friday INSIDER Daily Digest leads off with the latest annual report from the Pentagon's testing shop, some satellite news, how AI is being used to observe the war in Ukraine, and news on space acquisition.

The Pentagon's top tester released his latest report:

DOT&E publicly releases single weapons assessment following transparency criticisms

The office of the Defense Department’s chief weapons tester has publicly issued a single annual report today, reversing course from the previous year in which it produced a second, non-public report for Congress containing “controlled unclassified information” on the performance -- or lack thereof -- of major weapon systems.

Satellite communications should be getting some improvements:

New SATCOM framework charts path to ‘resilient enterprise’

The Defense Department has established a three-phased, multiyear approach for modernizing command and control capabilities for satellite communications, according to a comprehensive plan released Wednesday by the office of DOD Chief Information Officer John Sherman.

The Defense Department is using AI to track events in Ukraine:

Pentagon using ‘AI tools’ to predict future aid for Ukraine

Touting the efficiency of the Pentagon’s ability to provide lethal aid to the frontlines in Ukraine, one top official said the Defense Department is using artificial intelligence to bring disparate data together and figure out what the Ukrainian military will need next.

The space acquisition executive talked this week about buying principles:

‘Simple formula’: Calvelli drills down on space acquisition principles

In his effort to reform the way the Pentagon buys satellites and their ground systems, Space Force acquisition chief Frank Calvelli said recently that four principles were key to driving speed in projects, refining a list of tenets he released in October.

By Tony Bertuca
January 19, 2023 at 6:34 PM

The Defense Department today announced a $2.5 billion military aid package for Ukraine that includes the transfer of hundreds of combat vehicles from U.S. stocks including Strykers, Bradleys and mine-resistant trucks as well as other weapons.

The package, funded via presidential “drawdown” authority, includes:

  • additional munitions for National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems (NASAMS);
  • eight Avenger air defense systems; 
  • 59 Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicles with 590 anti-tank missiles and 295,000 rounds of 25mm ammunition;
  • 90 Stryker Armored Personnel Carriers with 20 mine rollers;
  • 53 Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles;
  • 350 humvees;
  • 20,000 155 mm artillery rounds;
  • approximately 600 precision-guided 155 mm artillery rounds;
  • 95,000 105 mm artillery rounds;
  • approximately 11,800 120 mm mortar rounds;
  • additional ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS);
  • 12 ammunition support vehicles;
  • six command post vehicles;
  • 22 tactical vehicles to tow weapons;
  • High-speed Anti-radiation missiles (HARMs);
  • approximately 2,000 anti-armor rockets;
  • over 3,000,000 rounds of small arms ammunition;
  • demolition equipment for obstacle clearing;
  • claymore anti-personnel munitions;
  • night vision devices;
  • spare parts and other field equipment.

DOD said the 59 Bradleys included in this package, when combined with the 90 Strykers and the 50 Bradleys the United States previously committed, will provide Ukraine with “two brigades of armored capability.”

Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Colin Kahl recently told reporters that the Ukraine war is moving into its “next phase” in which armored vehicles will be needed to confront Russian troops entrenched behind the front lines of battle.

The announcement of the new aid comes as Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is meeting with NATO officials in Germany to discuss support for Ukraine and the contribution of future weapon systems.

Meanwhile, the United States continues to withhold Abrams tanks from Ukraine, despite a request from Kyiv and the stated intention of Germany to withhold delivery of its Leopard tank until U.S. tanks are pledged.

Kahl said the Abrams “may nor may not be the right system for Ukraine,” but stressed how demanding it is to maintain the system.

“I just don’t think we’re there yet,” he said. “The Abrams tank is a very complicated piece of equipment. It’s expensive, it’s hard to train on, it has a jet engine. I think it’s about three gallons to the mile with jet fuel. It is not the easiest system to maintain.”

The Pentagon said the latest aid package, along with including hundreds of combat vehicles, also contains additional support for Ukraine’s air defenses.

“The Kremlin’s most recent air attacks against Ukraine’s critical infrastructure again demonstrate the devastating impact of Russia’s brutal war in Ukraine,” DOD said in a statement. “This package provides additional NASAMS munitions and Avenger air defense systems to help Ukraine counter a range of short and medium range threats and bolster Ukraine’s layered air defense.”

The United States has committed more than $26.7 billion in security assistance to Ukraine since the beginning of Russia’s invasion on Feb. 24, 2022.

By Thomas Duffy
January 19, 2023 at 11:56 AM

Today’s INSIDER Defense Digest starts off with a look at the next phase of the Russia-Ukraine war, news from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s artificial intelligence program, the Army is expanding its data platform project, and an Army missile defense program is close to operational capability.

A senior Pentagon official says armored vehicles will be key to the future of the war in Ukraine:

DOD sees armored vehicles as key to ‘next phase’ of Ukraine war

Under Secretary of Defense Colin Kahl said the war in Ukraine has entered a new phase in which Ukrainian troops will need more armored vehicles to battle an invading force of Russians now entrenched behind the front lines.

The Pentagon is launching a new artificial intelligence program:

New DARPA initiative focusing on making AI trustworthy for national security

As the private sector is trailblazing in the field of artificial intelligence, the Pentagon is seeking to develop AI through its own avenues and working to find where industry and Defense Department priorities align.

The Army wants to make data available to soldiers as close to real time as possible:

Army Vantage data platform evolving to increase availability of real-time information

The Army is in the process of evolving its Army Vantage data platform so soldiers and leaders can make “data driven decisions” in real time, according to service officials. In late 2019, the Army awarded Palantir Technologies a $458 million production agreement for Army Vantage -- the service’s platform for data-driven operations.

The Army expects to deliver a new air and missile defense system to the field in a few months:

IBCS on track for major acquisition milestone in April: initial operational capability declaration

The Army Integrated Air and Missile Defense program is on track to declare initial operational capability in April -- a delay of one year from the objective plan but still within the approved schedule -- a milestone that will allow soldiers, who for years have been testing the IAMD Battle Command Systems (IBCS), to pivot to real-world missions.

By Shelley K. Mesch
January 19, 2023 at 10:32 AM

The Air Force is seeking information from the defense industry for ways to keep its cyberspace operations system relevant, opening the possibility for a recompete on a sustainment contract currently held by Northrop Grumman.

The Cyber Mission Platform, which was developed by Northrop beginning in 2014, is a comprehensive system for offensive cyber operations and mission planning, generation, execution and more, according to a request for information posted by the service Life Cycle Management Center earlier this month.

Northrop still maintains CMP, managing logistics, a help desk, software development and other support capabilities, according to the post.

“The [Program Management Office] is looking at options on how best to approach sustainment of CMP and is looking for industry input on how this can be done,” the office said in an email. “If it is determined that a new contract structure would be most advantageous to the government, then a recompete is possible.”

AFLCMC wants to know if responding companies have experience with Agile methodology and processes, models-based systems engineering, enterprise logistics solutions and Defense Department cyber operations, along with other information on how the companies would work with the DOD and prime contractors.

By Thomas Duffy
January 18, 2023 at 2:25 PM

This midweek INSIDER Daily Digest starts off with the Army chief of staff commenting on replacing equipment sent to Ukraine, a new missile defense laser study, Joint Strike Fighter news, and news from the cyber world.

The Army chief of staff sees opportunity in replacing equipment sent to Ukraine:

McConville: Army should avoid buying ‘new, old stuff’ when replacing equipment sent to Ukraine

Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville said Wednesday that the service should resist purchasing “new, old stuff” when replenishing supplies and weapons that have been sent to Ukraine.

The Missile Defense Agency is launching a new laser weapon study:

MDA taps General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems for new DPAL study project

The Missile Defense Agency has tapped General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems to study diode-pumped alkali laser (DPAL) technology -- including potential applications for shooting down long-range threats as part of the Missile Defense System.

The schedule for improving F-35 aircraft may get an adjustment:

Integration timeline in jeopardy after F-35 makes first flight with TR-3

The F-35 Joint Program Office plans to cut in Technology Refresh 3 hardware following the results of a developmental test campaign that a spokesman said will "continue through 2023," a timeline that jeopardizes the program's goal of integrating the hardware into production this summer.

Industry wants a single pathway for sharing incident reports:

Defense industry urges CISA to create single 'channel' for sharing incident reports under upcoming regime

Leaders from the defense industrial base are urging the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency to consolidate how it will collect mandatory incident reports from the sector into a single "channel" where information is shared between the Defense Department and CISA.

By Nick Wilson
January 18, 2023 at 1:43 PM

The Navy successfully tested a prototype electronic attack system intended to provide anti-ship missile defense capabilities to small ships, according to a release from Northrop Grumman, the contractor.

Published last week, the announcement states that an initial demonstration of the future Ultra-Lite Electronic Attack (EA) prototype was conducted by Northrop Grumman and the Naval Research Laboratory during last summer’s Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise.

The system is undergoing additional concept demonstrations this month to assess reliability and scalability.

The earlier demonstration was conducted aboard an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, where the prototype transceiver technology was paired with the Navy’s EA antenna. The “scaled-down” system is small and light to enable use on small vessels.

“This at-sea demonstration proves Northrop Grumman's future low-size, weight and power, scaled EA solution can effectively support U.S. Navy missions,” said Monta Harrell, Northrop Grumman’s director of maritime electronic warfare advanced solutions, in a statement included in the release.

“The lessons learned from the RIMPAC exercise provide real-world insights into our low-risk architectural solution for smaller ships that will revolutionize EA for the U.S. Navy,” Harrell’s statement continues.

By Michael Marrow
January 18, 2023 at 12:49 PM

The Space Force successfully launched another Global Positioning System III-series satellite from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, FL, the morning of Jan. 18 aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

Manufactured by Lockheed Martin, the GPS III satellites provide up to three times greater accuracy and an eightfold increase in anti-jamming capabilities compared to earlier systems, Space Systems Command said in a press release.

“With the GPS III SV06 launch, GPS has accomplished another step towards Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT)’s overall mission of modernizing capabilities for our civilians and military users while maintaining the performance and resiliency of our existing architecture,” Program Executive Officer for Military Communications & PNT Directorate Cordell DeLaPena Jr. said in the release.

The rocket carrying the satellite was reused from a previous National Aeronautics and Space Administration mission, and SSC said the rocket was recovered and will be refurbished for a future launch.

Four more GPS III satellites remain to join the medium-earth orbit constellation, which now numbers 32, following the launch of the sixth III-series vehicle today. A Lockheed official previously said in an interview with Inside Defense that the company was planning to finish construction of the last two satellites in the first quarter of 2023.

Other capabilities -- such as the addition of the L1C civil signal that offers compatibility with international satellite navigation systems -- will depend on the launch of GPS IIIF satellites, the follow-on space vehicles that are also being manufactured by Lockheed.

The Space Force is looking to launch the IIIF satellites beginning in 2026, though risk remains that deployment of its ground control segment could be delayed.

By Tony Bertuca
January 18, 2023 at 10:25 AM

The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute plans to host its first annual National Security Innovation Base Summit in Washington on March 14, accompanied by a “report card” for the Pentagon and panel discussions featuring defense and congressional officials.

Reagan Institute Policy Director Rachel Hoff told reporters the event is meant to continue national security conversations begun at the Reagan National Defense Forum held in Simi Valley, CA, last month.

“We along with a set of advisors had understood that we needed a tool to kind of track where future areas for interventions are needed,” she said. “Then also to look back on previous efforts -- and to do this over time -- to track the effectiveness of various interventions, legislation or reform efforts.”

Hoff said a key feature of the upcoming event will be the launch of the NSIB Report Card, intended to be a policy tool for the institute to measure the effectiveness and productivity of the defense industrial base regarding innovation.

“This will be kind of an innovative policy tool that will allow policymakers and key stakeholders [to assess] this national security innovation base ecosystem,” she said.

Hoff said she and her team are developing a “short list of key indicators that will measure across a set of metrics and will assess with a letter grade . . . which areas are performing well . . . and which areas are ripe for future policy interventions or resources or need a new strategy or what have you.”

Hoff said examples of report card metrics include access to innovative capital and a well-trained 21st century workforce.

“We’re building the report card now,” she said, adding that it will likely be released a day or two before the summit.

“What we hope comes of it is that there’s a real conversation around the indicators that are at the bottom of the list and what we need to do to improve,” she said.

The report may also include fiscal recommendations, but Hoff said it remains to be seen if specific dollar amounts would be attached.

The announcement of the NSIB Summit follows Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s recent establishment of the Office of Strategic Capital, which is intended to invest in companies developing key defense technologies and help them bridge the so-called “valley of death” that lies between prototyping and production.

By Dan Schere
January 17, 2023 at 4:27 PM

(Editor’s note: This story has been updated with additional information from Oshkosh Defense.)

The Army has awarded Oshkosh Defense a $141 million contract for A2 medium tactical trucks and medium tactical trailers, according to a Defense Department notice.

The contract includes an order of 414 Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles and 56 FMTV trailers, according to a press release Oshkosh issued on Wednesday.

Oshkosh’s medium tactical vehicles and vehicle systems are used for ammunition resupply, maintenance and recover, engineer support missions, troop transport and combat support in tactical environments, among other purposes, according to the company’s website.

The FMTV A2 is a modernized version of a previous FMTV that offers increased force protection, more payload capacity, better off-road mobility and an upgraded electrical system, according to the company. Pat Williams, the chief program officer for Oshkosh Defense, said in a statement Wednesday that the company has worked with the Army to refine the FMTV A2 since being awarded a production contract in 2018.

“We’re confident that we are delivering the best performing medium tactical vehicle in the world,” he said.

The contract announcement, posted Friday afternoon, states that bids were solicited online and two were received. The estimated completion date is Nov. 30, 2024.

According to Oshkosh, the company has received orders for 1,412 FMTV A2s and 800 FMTV trailers to date.

By Michael Marrow
January 17, 2023 at 2:08 PM

A SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket carrying military payloads blasted off from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, FL on Jan. 15, marking the second Falcon Heavy launch for the Space Force.

The mission, dubbed USSF-67, carried two spacecraft to geosynchronous orbit, Space Systems Command said in a Jan. 16 press release announcing the successful launch.

“We’re certainly on a roll with 96 consecutive successful national security space launches, and the takeaway is that we’ve really got a spectacular team working together on our most challenging launch profiles to ensure our mission partners get on orbit with confidence,” Program Executive Officer for Assured Access to Space Maj. Gen. Stephen Purdy said in the release.

According to Space Systems Command, the first space vehicle, called Continuous Broadcast Augmenting Satellites Communications (CBAS), is a satellite that will supplement existing SATCOM relay capabilities “in support of our senior leaders and combatant commanders.”

A Long Duration Propulsive Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle Secondary Payload Adapter, or LDPE, was the second spacecraft mounted on the rocket. Based on Northrop Grumman’s ESPAStar platform, the spacecraft carried two satellites for SSC and three for the Space Rapid Capabilities Office (SpRCO).

“From conception and development of next-generation space technology, like ESPAStar, to on-orbit command and control, we are prepared to support the full lifecycle of our customer’s missions throughout the ever-evolving threat environment,” Vice President for National Security Systems Troy Brashear said in a Northrop Grumman press release.

According to Space News, the two SSC satellites, called Catcher and WASSAT, are prototypes that will respectively study space domain awareness capabilities and track other objects in orbit.

Meanwhile, the three SpRCO satellites “include two operational prototypes for enhanced situational awareness, and an operational prototype crypto/interface encryption payload providing secure space-to-ground communications capability,” SSC said in the release.

Space Development Agency Director Derek Tournear said in September 2022 that SpRCO’s satellites are “highly classified” prototypes and systems, though an official previously stated SpRCO is only interested in procuring mature capabilities.

The Jan. 15 Falcon Heavy mission is the second for the service following a successful launch on Nov. 1, which similarly carried payloads to geosynchronous orbit. Mounted on that rocket as well was an LDPE spacecraft, which SSC said in the Jan. 16 press release “will continue to provide access to space for multiple DOD space Science & Technology (S&T) demonstration experiments.”

By John Liang
January 17, 2023 at 1:33 PM

This Tuesday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on the resolution of an F-35 power module shortfall, Army cloud computing, the Navy's Littoral Combat Ship program and more.

An F-35 power module shortfall, which previously caused long queues for maintenance and threatened to render an increasing number of jets non-mission-capable, was overcome in November:

F-35 power module backlog cleared, JPO says

A critical shortage of power modules for the F-35's engines has ended, a Joint Program Office spokesman confirmed to Inside Defense.

Last October, the Army announced the Enterprise Application Migration and Modernization effort -- a $1 billion multi-award, multivendor contract to further its cloud efforts:

Army's EAMM contract will do 'heavy lifting' for cloud migration

While hundreds of the Army's applications have already moved to the cloud, a senior service official says there's still "a lot more to lift," which could be accomplished through an upcoming enterprise-wide cloud contract.

After saving five Littoral Combat Ships from early decommissioning, lawmakers directed the Navy to determine alternative uses for the remaining Freedom-class variants, which have struggled with the anti-submarine warfare mission module and their drive trains:

Navy considers new uses for LCS variants

The Navy is exploring new ways to use its fleet of Littoral Combat Ships, according to service officials who discussed plans for LCSs to be outfitted with the Naval Strike Missile and take on mine countermeasure missions in 5th Fleet.

The Fiscal Year 2023 National Defense Authorization Act mandates the Army craft an Extended Range Cannon Artillery program acquisition strategy that includes full-and-open competition using best-value criteria for all post-prototype production:

ERCA strategy now required to include 'best value' competition for post-prototype production

The Army is now required by law to open the Extended Range Cannon Artillery program to competition after the service buys an initial batch of 20 prototypes, setting the stage for a contest before the planned production decision late next year.

The latest cyber defense news from our colleagues at Inside Cybersecurity:

Defense industry urges CISA to create single 'channel' for sharing incident reports under upcoming regime

Leaders from the defense industrial base are urging the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency to consolidate how it will collect mandatory incident reports from the sector into a single "channel" where information is shared between the Defense Department and CISA.

By Tony Bertuca
January 17, 2023 at 1:08 PM

Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA) has been named chairman of the House Appropriations defense subcommittee.

“There is no higher priority for Congress than defending the American people and the liberties we hold dear,” he said in a statement. “Serving as the chairman of the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee is one of the greatest honors of my service to this nation. It is also a role that comes with tremendous responsibilities.”

Calvert said Congress needs to be “wide-eyed” about growing Russian and Chinese military aggression.

“America cannot expect to lead the free world in the decades to come if we are not in the position of being the unquestioned defense superpower we have been for decades,” he said.

But Calvert, who has said he wants to increase defense spending, will be going up against some fiscal hawks in his party who want to cap discretionary spending amounts used in fiscal year 2022. Doing so could mean a $75 billion cut to the Defense Department.

“As Alexander Hamilton once wrote, ‘the circumstances that endanger the safety of nations are infinite.’ Yet, as we know all too well, American tax dollars are very much finite,” he said.

Calvert pledged to “eliminate waste, create efficiencies, and prioritize investments in the tools that will provide the foundation for our defense for decades to come.”

Rep. Kay Granger (R-TX), who will chair the full committee, released a statement saying Calvert has her full support.

“Ken’s tremendous experience and understanding of defense issues will enable him to work together with our subcommittee members to tackle our many national security challenges,” she said. “Ken and I share the belief that we cannot shortchange our men and women in uniform, and that we must invest in the defense priorities that are required to meet a rising China and other potential threats to our security.”