The F-35, Eglin and the Maintenance Revolution

09/01/2011
09/01/2011 by Robbin Laird Second Line of Defense sat down with Col. Laura Sampsel shortly after her departure from Eglin and retirement from the USMC. During her time at Eglin, Col. Laura Sampsel, 33rd Maintenance Group commander, was responsible for the bed-down and operational readiness of the three variants of the Joint…

Russian Air Power on Display: The Return of the MiG

08/27/2011
By Dr. Richard Weitz 08/27/2011 - Until a few years ago, the Russian military aviation sector, like many other Russian defense firms, simply struggled to keep Soviet-era weapons platforms operational through upgrades of their computers or ordinance. The Russian military-industrial complex rarely produced any new sophisticated weapons systems. When it…

The Libyan Threat

08/27/2011
08/27/2011 By Richard Weitz Although the insurgents look to have secured control of Tripoli, Muammar el-Qaddafi’s threat to the international community has not ended. Dangers still persist from the dictator’s dabbling in weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery. British Foreign Secretary William Hague has said that the…

The USCG and Hurricane Irene: It is Time to Rebuild the Elizabeth City Facility to Protect America

08/27/2011
08/27/2011 by Robbin Laird The hurricane pounding the East Coast is a reminder of the reliance Americans have on the USCG for search, rescue and safety in extreme circumstances.  But it is time to pay the USCG back for such centrality to the American way of life. http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/post-report-hurricane-irene-hits-north-carolina/2011/08/27/gIQA0XKniJ_video.html The entire…

Another Perspective on Libya: Off of the Shores of Tripoli

08/27/2011
[caption id="attachment_23125" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="The Italian Carrier Guiseppe Garibaldi Credit: Italian Navy"][/caption] 08/27/2011 The Libyan operation has highlighted the use of maritime bases for conducting air operations.  In a recent interview with Col. Mark Desens, the Commanding officer of 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit involved in the initial Libyan operations, the…

The Harrier and Expeditionary Basing

08/25/2011
08/25/2011 During a recent exercise of the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, the USMC honed their skills at landing Harriers on AM-2 matting, loading the aircraft with the pilot in the cockpit and ready to go after loading the aircraft with both weapons and fuel.  After getting “a bag of fuel”…