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McAleese & Associates: Military, Gov’t Leaders Discuss Defense Tech Priorities at Reagan Forum

A new McAleese & Associates report says several government and military leaders discussed some of the Pentagon’s technology priorities at the Reagan National Defense Forum in California.

Ellen Lord, defense undersecretary for acquisition and sustainment, talked about cybersecurity and the need for strong cyber defenses to counter threats posed by China, including theft of intellectual property on weapons programs.

She mentioned the Defense Department’s plan to fund the development of hypersonics and other technologies and its expectations on contractors to accelerate work on artificial intelligence and other commercial tech in support of DoD programs.

U.S. Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson discussed the new space force; the requirement for operational squadrons; threats related to China; and the need for increased defense spending, the report noted.

Jim McAleese, founder and principal at McAleese & Associates, wrote in the report that U.S. Army Secretary Mark Esper expects the service’s cross-functional teams to facilitate the initial deployment of six tech capabilities by 2028.

Those include the long-range precision fires; soldier-lethality; next-generation combat vehicles; future vertical lift; network; and air-missile defense.

Hawk Carlisle, CEO of the National Defense Industrial Association and a retired Air Force general, cited at the forum that the U.S. military should upgrade the nuclear triad and endorse additional funding for hypersonics in DoD’s budget request for fiscal 2020.

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