Blogs

Team Obama's PR Blunders on the $400 Million for Iran

On August 5, I wrote in these pages that the Obama administration's $1.7 billion settlement with the Iranian government—coinciding with the transfer of five Americans from Iranian custody in exchange for seven Iranians in U.S. custody—was being politicized by congressional Republicans and used as a way to further bludgeon President Barack Obama's foreign policy in an intensely competitive election year.

3 Reasons Russia's Bombers in Iran Were a Big Deal

What are we to make of the Russian military's use of an Iranian air base last week as a staging point for airstrikes in Syria? U.S. intelligence officials have been working on this question and the U.S. State Department was caught flat-footed by the development. “[W]e’re trying to get a better assessment of what’s going on,” State Department spokesman Mark Toner told reporters in a briefing on August 17, but “fundamentally this isn’t helpful.”

Saving Face in Tehran

Well, that didn't last long, did it? Barely a week after the announcement that Russian warplanes were using a base in Iran to launch airstrikes in Syria, Iran withdrew its permission to use the base. This development underscores how the Russian use of the base did not indicate some new “alliance”, as much commentary suggested. Iranian officials were not using that term. As I wrote after the announcement, Russians and Iranians were still not buddies.

We Asked the US Navy: What Will Replace the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler?

The U.S. Navy’s analysis of alternatives (AOA) for its next generation replacement for its F/A-18E/F Super Hornet fleet is well underway. The AOA will be roughly a year-and-a-half long, but the process is in its infancy. While the Next Generation Air Dominance (NGAD) program will aim to fill the gap in the carrier air wing when the Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler airborne electronic attack aircraft retire, the service does not yet have any concepts emerging from that on-going analysis.

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