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Pentagon Press Briefing - 19 April 2018

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The Department of Defense's weekly press briefing, run by Chief Spokesperson Dana W. White and Marine Lt. Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr., director, Joint Staff, was held today in the Pentagon Briefing Room.  Key topics of discussion were related to the Department's acquisition strategy for a pending massive commercial cloud computing contract and the recent US/UK/France strike on Syria.  A third line of questions, aggressively advanced by longtime CNN Correspondent Barbara Starr, addressed the state of the relationship between President Donald Trump and Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, who, according to reports, urged the President to seek Congressional support before attacking Syria, but was rebuked.

On the cloud contracting question, Ms. White announced that DoD would pursue a full-and-open competition for the so-called Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) program that would result in the award of a single contract to a single vendor or team.  She stressed that some 46 vendors had expressed interest in competing (via responses to the draft RFP) and that this is not a "source source" award situation. Nor would the JEDI award be a winner-take-all for ten years.  Rather, the initial award would be for two years, with two options of five and three years possibly  following the initial two-year period of performance.

With regard to the Syrian operation, General McKenzie underscored the military success, noting that: 

  • The coordinated US/UK/FR strike of Friday successfully degraded the Assad regime's ability to wage chemical attacks without a single casulty.  
  • The Syrians had chlorine and sarin stores, and that "residual capability" for carrying out chemical strikes remains in dispersed locations.
  • The Syrian response to the attack was "confused and chaotic" and that their employment of Russian air defense systems was entirely unsuccessful, not downing a single allied aircraft.
When asked how Friday's attack changed the strategic balance of of the Syria conflict, General McKenzie stated: "I don't think we sought to change the strategic balance of the Syria conflict. We sought to send a message that it is bad practice to gas women and children."


Defense Systems Interviews 

DSJ Exclusive: Interview of U.S. Army Major General John L. Gronski, Army National Guard, Europe

Defense Systems Journal had a chance to talk at the National Guard Association of the United States (NGAUS) Annual Meeting and Exhibition with Maj. Gen. John L. Gronski, Deputy Commanding General of the Army National Guard within U.S. Army Europe (USAREUR).  Details are here on the five things we learned.


Defense & Aerospace Industry Meetings, Trade Shows and Exhibitions

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April 22-25 - GEOINT 2018 (Tampa, FL)

April 25-27 - Army Aviation Association of America Summit (Nashville, TN)

April 26-29 - ILA Berlin Airshow (Berlin, Germany) 

April 30 - May 3 -- AUVSI's Xponential 2018 Conference & Exhibition (Denver, CO)

May 7-10 - Special Operations Forces Exhibition - SOFEX (Amman, Jordan)

May 7-10 -- NDIA's 2018 Armaments Systems Forum (Indianapolis, IN)

May 10 - 17th Annual C4ISRNET Conference (Arlington, VA)

May 14-18 - Naval Helicopter Association Symposium (Norfolk, VA) 

May 16-18 -- Black Sea Defense & Aerospace (Bucharest, Romania)

May 21-24 - NDIA's Special Operations Forces Industry Conference - SOFIC (Tampa, FL)

May 22-24  -- AUSA's LANPAC Symposium and Exhibition (Honolulu, HI)

May 30-31 - Canada's Global Defence & Security Trade Show - CANSEC 2018 (Ottawa, Canada)

June 11-15 - Eurosatory Defense & Security International Exhibition 2018 (Paris)

For more see here -- http://www.dsjournal.com/industrycalendar.html 

Career Resources for Veterans -- http://www.jobhero.com/veteran-career-guide/