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AFCLC Launches New Introduction to China, Russia Courses with Certificates on Culture Guide App

Monday, January 17th, 2022

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. (AFNS) —  

The Air Force Culture and Language Center recently added Introduction to China, Introduction to Russia Culture courses, and a video library to its newly updated, free Culture Guide mobile app. The addition of the courses moves lock-step with Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. CQ Brown Jr.’s strategic initiative, Accelerate Change or Lose, outlining four Action Orders and focusing on people, decision-making, competition, and adapting to change.

Airmen and Guardians will receive a Certificate of Completion ready to upload to their training record for credit when completing a course.

During his speech at the 6th Annual Air University Language, Regional Expertise and Culture Symposium in October, and later quoted in Air Force Magazine, Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall highlighted the importance of understanding Chinese culture for integrated deterrence.

“Collectively, we Americans lack an adequate understanding of Chinese culture,” Kendall said. “We run a significant risk of misinterpretation and missed signals when we project our own perspectives upon Chinese actions and communications.”

In less than 60 minutes, each course gives service members the baseline general attributes of the cultures of the nation’s strategic competitors. An outline of the courses includes:

Introduction to China: The new China Culture course consists of two informative segments. Part 1 introduces the concept of culture, social behaviors, and how they define a culture’s native belief system. In Part 2, the user engages the 12 Domains of Culture concerning China, the nation’s history, religion, socio-political relations, and more.

Introduction to Russia: The new Russia Culture course consists of two intricate parts and takes about 40 minutes. The first half introduces conceptions and philosophies related to culture in general. Then, in Part 2, the course introduces Russia as a nation, its multifaceted history, and explores the socio-political climate that encompasses the federation in the 21st century.

The new video library includes education content for integrated deterrence organically produced and curated by AFCLC. Currently, the library consists of Introduction to the Air Force Culture and Language Center, Korean Peninsula History, and Quadrilateral Initiative.

“The concept of official education delivered through a mobile app completely untethered from government IT systems has never been done before,” said Howard Ward, AFCLC director. “At Air War College and Air University, we take pride in being the Air Force’s global classroom. The way to accelerate learning is through mobile devices, where learning can occur anytime, anywhere, and through delivery methods familiar to Airmen, Guardians, Total Force, and members of other services. To accelerate change in learning at enterprise scale, the path to an Airman or Guardian’s mind begins in their pocket.”

AFCLC’s Culture Guide app is available to all military service members and civilians through the App Store and Google Play and it is safe for Department of Defense mobile devices. More than 20,000 individuals are already utilizing the app, and for those individuals, an automatic update to Version 2.0 is now available.

By Mikala McCurry and Lori Quiller, Air Force Culture and Language Center Outreach Team

SCUBAPRO Sunday – Australian Z and M Special Units WWII

Sunday, January 16th, 2022

Growing up the movie “Attack Force Z” one of my favorite movies and still is. I have always wanted to an old school WW2 operation doing an insert by Klepper kayaks and blow-up a ship in a harbor or a bridge. You know like Cockleshell heroes or Attack Force Z  

SOE-Australia (SOA) was a WWII Special Forces and covert operations organization operating in the Pacific theater behind Japanese lines. It was made up of men and women from Australian, British, New Zealand, Canadian, South African, Indonesian, Timorese and Malay. SOA fought a secret, undercover war against the Japanese occupying force on the islands north of Australia. With the success of the British SOE unit in the European theater, Winston Churchill ordered that a similar unit be formed in the pacific. SOA was made up from many different units like the Royal Australian Navy’s  Coastwatcher’s, a propaganda unit the Far Eastern Liaison Office (FELO), the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS/SIA), a Dutch East Indies intelligence unit (NEFIS), the United States’ Philippine Regional Section (PRS, operating in the southern Philippines) and an Australian/British Special Operations group, which was to carry out missions behind enemy lines. The SOA took part in hundreds of covert operations against the Japanese and were directly responsible for eliminating thousands of enemy troops and sinking tons of ships and supplies, they paid a high price with more than eighty SOA commandos losing their lives. To maintain security, the SOA was given a cover name – Inter-Allied Services Department (IASD, mostly referred to as the ISD). It had British SOE agents that had escaped Singapore and the Dutch East Indies before it fell to the Japanese. That helped get it up and running.

SOA operators could operate in parties as small as two men, ISD Operatives faced overwhelming odds against a barbaric and increasingly desperate enemy. They conducted similar operations as many other SF groups in WWII. From Jedburgh’s type of missions (training indigenous guerrilla forces) to conduct direct action missions and raiding targets of opportunity. They also performed special reconnaissance missions close to enemy forces behind the lines.

The ISD men kept quiet about their exploits for over 50 years, and even today, the full story has never really been made public. The whole story of ISD operations during WWII is one that has been largely overlooked and misunderstood for the past 75 years. One of the main reasons for this is the misunderstanding that ISD was named Z or M Special Unit. The Z and M just referred to their administrative arm of the units. Z Special Unit was also used for requisitioning stores and transport through Australian Army channels. There are cases where Colonels were removed from transport aircraft to make room for ISD Corporals. Such was the administrative power of the Z Special Unit. So, this is how it was broken down, for Australian Army personnel and civilians assigned to ISD, and later to SRD, and as such, Z Special Unit appears on the service records of every Australian soldier who was assigned to either of those organizations. Another reason for some of the confusion is that in early 1943 the SOA was giving a new code name the Services Reconnaissance Department (SRD), and the term SOA was only to be used at the highest level. Z Special Unit does not appear on the service records of RAAF, RAN or British, NZ, Canadian, or South African personnel assigned to ISD or SRD since they weren’t enlisted in the Australian Army. However, Z Special Unit or Z Force became a common term in the post-war years, even among SRD Veterans. Although it is historically inaccurate to refer to the Special Operations as Z Special Unit. So, where do M Special units fit in? During the war an Allied Special Forces Reconnaissance Team under the command of the Services Reconnaissance Department (SRD.) It was the successor of the Coastwatcher’s unit. Raised in Queensland, Australia, in 1943, the unit operated behind enemy lines for long periods in the Pacific theatre, collecting intelligence such as enemy troop movements and shipping details. It was disbanded at the end of the war in 1945.  

Unlike its sister unit, M Special Unit wasn’t as well known for direct action missions. Z Special Unit was comprised of about 81 members and generally inserted via small boat, submarine, or airplane and conducted quick hit and run missions. They would also conduct intelligence-gathering operations. M Special Unit, on the other hand, operated behind enemy lines for extended periods and did long-range intelligence collection; as such, they tried to go undetected and, as such rarely engage the enemy.  

Also, all personal assigned to ISD were still listed as attached to the parent unit they came from. The reason for this was to help maintain secrecy. It was also used as a way to hide the funding for the ISD. As one of the best ways to keep something secret is never to show that money is going to them. The units never had an official insignia. You will often see a Z of M with a dagger through it. This was not made until 1970 and unfortunately, is mistaken for the units WWII symbol. 

One of ISD/SRD’s most famous Operations was called Jaywick. They used a 68-ton wooden ship. British authorities had seized the Kofuku Maru in Singapore following Japan’s entry into the war. In 1943 she was renamed Krait and assigned to the SRD. The objective of Operation Jaywick was for SRD members to attack Japanese shipping in Singapore. SRD commandos paddled into Singapore harbor in kayaks and attached limpet mines to Japanese enemy shipping. The stealthy raiders sank seven ships and about 39,000 tons of supplies and equipment before escaping home to Australia. By the time they returned nearly seven weeks later, the crew of 14 had carried out one of the most successful clandestine raids in Australian history. Throughout the war, the 70-foot wooden-hulled boat involved in the Jaywick raid, MV Krait, sank more shipping than any other ship in the Australian navy.  

In a subsequent mission to Jaywick called Operation Rimau, the raiding party was detected by the enemy, hunted down and executed. Seventeen of SRD members lie in graves at Kranji War Cemetery in Singapore. In Operation Copper, eight men landed on an island off New Guinea to disable enemy guns before the Allied landing. Discovered by the Japanese, three commandos were captured, tortured, and executed. Four others escaped and fled out to sea, but only one made it home.

No matter what their name was or what they are called now, the units of WWII are the forefathers of today’s Special Forces in Australian and New Zealand and helped end the war.

www.australiansas.com/Establis%20SF

The AR-Takedown Tool

Saturday, January 15th, 2022

The all NEW AR-Takedown Tool is being released at Shot Show! 34.99 with free shipping! 100% USA made.

www.artakedowntool.com

MOSA Expedites Army Modernization Efforts at Aviation, Missile Center

Saturday, January 15th, 2022

REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. — It’s more than just a buzzword — it’s the way of the future for Army aviation.

MOSA — modular open systems architecture (or approach) — has become a popular term in recent years in the defense community, but it’s something the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Aviation & Missile Center’s Joint Technology Center/System Integration Laboratory has worked on for years. That expertise and baseline is helping the DEVCOM Aviation & Missile Center adapt technologies quickly, efficiently and at a lower cost to support Army modernization efforts.

“While it’s a new term today, for us it’s business as usual,” said Joe Reis, Multiple Unified Simulation Environment lead for the JSIL. “We’ve been striving for the last 10 years to try to break our software down into components so it can be reused. Wherever possible, we started adopting all these different standard protocols with the vision of being able to reuse those components and being able to integrate with more than just ourselves. With that we’re able to stretch into areas we never have before.”

At DEVCOM AvMC, the MOSA success story starts with MUSE — the Multiple Unified Simulation Environment — a command and staff trainer. Originally created to provide Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance simulation capabilities, today the government-developed and sustained MUSE software baseline is being used in a variety of systems, including advanced teaming, part of AvMC’s support to the Future Vertical Lift Cross-Functional Team. The JSIL works primarily with unmanned aircraft systems, to include Shadow, Gray Eagle, Reaper and Global Hawk.

“The MUSE baseline was the foundational software that we began with for the Advanced Teaming effort,” said JSIL Software Lead James Bowman III. “We’ve been modifying and enhancing the MUSE baseline for over 20 years, by incorporating customer capability requests, keeping pace with industry standards and maintaining an accreditation (Authority to Operate — ATO). It would not have been possible for the Army to constitute the capabilities inherent in MUSE in time to meet the needs of Army Futures Command.”

“We’ve leaped into this research and development field instead of just being a trainer, because of being able to break these components down,” Reis added.

For the AvMC team, that is the whole point of MOSA — delivering solutions expeditiously to the Army and the Warfighter.

“MOSA is taking a modular approach, and for us, that’s just not theoretical,” Bowman said. “Software modularity allows the teams to share components across our enterprise, thereby negating duplicative efforts. It is paramount that the government continue to address intelligent software design, since it is our responsibility to provide quality solutions to and for the Warfighter that are concurrently cost-optimal for the government.

“We work to ensure that there is an intentionality to identifying common capabilities, already resident in MUSE, in order to exploit for utilization in our UAS Trainer solutions. Obviously, if not properly implemented, there can be challenges with code synchronization. JSIL addresses this by adhering to industry standard software processes and by utilizing Azure DevOps to ensure solution integrity. Consequently, stove-pipe solutions are a thing of the past. Once a bug is fixed in a component, all software that utilizes that component inherits the benefits of the fix.”

Another MOSA success story is the JSIL’s support to the Synthetic Training Environment Cross-Functional Team. The Reconfigurable Virtual Collective Trainer-Air uses the MUSE baseline foundationally, merged with work the JSIL did for the Air Force, to create a UAS software baseline for the RVCT-A.

“We would not have been able to support the high op-tempo of the RVCT-A effort had we not leveraged and utilized this MOSA construct,” Bowman said. “We continue to be energized about the possibilities of utilizing the MUSE and collective decades of UAS modeling and simulation domain knowledge to address current and emerging requirements.”

What’s next for MOSA at AvMC? The JSIL team will support swarming unmanned aircraft systems, part of the work being done with Advanced Teaming and Air Launched Effects. That effort includes incorporating an Army Game Studio Image Generator, which will reduce the money spent for commercial off the shelf rendering engine licenses and maintenance fees, a price tag that runs over $1 million alone for one UAS variant.

“If we can take that million-dollar expenditure and invest it in an existing GOTS image generator, that cost just goes away,” Bowman said. “MOSA is not just some buzzword, in our view, the implementation thereof provides tangible evidence of how we save the Army money, and how we get solutions to the soldier expeditiously, because we’re constantly building on a pre-existing, well-vetted, foundation.”

AvMC supports a variety of partners with MOSA, to include Program Executive Office Aviation; PEO Simulation, Training and Instrumentation; the Air Force Agency for Modeling and Simulation; PEO Intelligence Electronic Warfare & Sensors; and the FVL and Synthetic Training Environment CFTs.

“All of this work that we have done and are very proud of also has a global impact,” Bowman said. “We work with coalition partners, and because we adhere to these standards, when we show up to an exercise, not only are we operating our simulation, our coalition partners ask us at times to help them and we do that proudly. We’re U.S. citizens working with our coalition partners that are going to go to battle with us in the event that hostilities break out. We’re very proud to work with these standards to support not just the U.S., but its partners.”

By Amy Tolson, DEVCOM Aviation & Missile Center Public Affairs

FirstSpear Friday Focus: NEW Patented LaserFrame Technology

Friday, January 14th, 2022

New patented LaserFrameTM technology, FirstSpear continues to innovate and develop cutting edge technologies to give war fighters and first responders the utmost edge. LaserFrame technology comes in a full suite of pockets. LaserFrame is a hemless design and construction that dramatically reduces weight, decreases the pocket’s footprint and retains its shape when empty, all of which combine to allow for a sleeker overall platform.

The LaserFrame line will come with our 6/9 attachment system that is compatible with our laser fusion 6/12 platforms as well as legacy MOLLE platforms. Expect to see variations of rifle pockets, pistol magazine pockets and accessories like the popular Fight Strap as we’ll be adding more pocket variations throughout 2022.

For more information about FirstSpear, check out First-Spear.com or First-Spear.tech.

Terrain 365 Invictus-ATB

Friday, January 14th, 2022

Upscale Variant of the Rustproof Invictus Featuring Integrated Bolster Construction

New for January 2022, Terrain 365™ releases their Invictus-ATB. An upscale variant of the popular, rustproof Invictus collab series with Prometheus Design Werx, featuring their proprietary, corrosion-proof, edge holding, Terravantium™ blade alloy. This precision made framelock features an integrated bolster construction with hand fitted carbon fiber, G10 or canvas micarta scales. Signature design details include handle and blade fullers, dive watch-grade glow in the dark cabochons in the dual thumbstuds, fine jimping throughout, and a purpose driven industrial aesthetic. As with all of their “AT” designated knives, these are 100% non-ferrous, non-magnetic, and a completely rustproof build for all terrains.

The Invictus-ATB is available with Terravantium™ blades and integrated titanium bolsters with carbon fiber, G10 or canvas micarta scales.

Creative Director and Co-Founder Patrick Ma of Terrain 365 states,

“The Invictus-ATB is an upscale version of this design series. While still very purpose driven in its intent, the integrated bolster construction gives this variant a slightly more dressed up feel. As with all our AT designated knives, this folder is expertly constructed out of 100% non-ferrous and non-magnetic materials, including our proprietary, edge holding Terravantium™ blade alloy, for performance in any environment and terrain in the world.”

The Invictus-ATB is available for $380-$385 on their website.

High Speed Gear & Comp-Tac WILL attend SHOT Show 2022

Friday, January 14th, 2022

SWANSBORO, N.C. – January 12, 2022 – As long as there is a Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Tradeshow (SHOT) High Speed Gear® and Comp-Tac® will be attending, displaying, entertaining and meeting in booth 75707.

High Speed Gear® and Comp-Tac® best known for the TACO® and extremely durable and reliable Kydex® Holsters, will attend SHOT Show 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada, January 18th through the 22nd. SHOT Show is an annual event where industry leaders in the tactical gear, gun and first responder industry can present innovative products to consumers, trade ideas as well as exchange information with professionals who can benefit from the equipment.

At SHOT Show 2022, High Speed Gear® and Comp-Tac® will be in booth number 75707 along with new and exciting products The booth will be fully kitted with Gear, CT3 Holster Drawing Station, meeting space, our staff, and several events.

New products for the show include:

• CT3™ Level III Holster: The CT3 is the first level three holster that Comp-Tac has offered. Three levels of retention, combined with Comp-Tac’s well known holster body fit, and the ability to fit Red-Dot optics help to fill the demands of the law enforcement market.
• Core™ Plate Carrier: High Speed Gear has gone back to the drawing board and released a ruggedly-designed, low profile plate carrier.
• APEX™ Sling combines new technology in webbing, hardware and fabric to bring a water resistant, two-speed, two point sling to the market.
• APEX™ Slick Sling is an additional sling option with the ultimate low profile design for the smoothest slickest option on the market.
• Core Cummerbund is the perfect accessory to expand a basic plate carrier into a more robust and fully accessorized option.
• Sport-Tac Holster with an innovative flexible foam backing is a new cool and comfortable answer to inside the waistband carry.
• Dual Concealment Holster – DCH – A unique holster that offers both inside the waistband and outside the waistband carry in one package.
• Polymer TACO V2 – Brand new, sneak peek, ruggedly designed TACO for holding multiple pieces of gear.

“Attending the SHOT Show is a big part of our year. This is one of the opportunities we have to meet our customers face to face, show off new products, get feedback and learn more about the industry and future opportunities,” commented Bill Babboni chief operations officer for High Speed Gear. “We will be taking precautions with wiping down surfaces and products, fist bumping and wearing masks. We will also be excited to focus on our business partners and helping each other be more successful in 2022.”

High Speed Gear® and Comp-Tac® would like to extend a welcoming invitation to come by for several events happening at the booth:

• Ambassador Will Petty will be putting on a Tourniquet Application Demonstraton: Tuesday, January 18, 2022 at 3pm
• Gas Mask / Business Card Grab – We will be drawing business cards out of a gas mask for free gear: Wednesday 19th, 2022 at 2pm
• Ambassador Alex Alderman will be on hand for questions and Arm Wrestling: Thursday, January 20, 2022 at1:30pm
• TACO / Business Card Grab – We will be drawing business cards out of a TACO for free gear: Friday January 21st, 2022 at 2pm

A video show reel of High Speed Gear® products can be viewed on the following link Mission Essential Tactical Gear – YouTube

See Tactical Distributors at SHOT Show

Thursday, January 13th, 2022

Tactical Distributors is excited to announce we will have a booth at Shot Show 2022 located in the New Ceasars Forums Expo Level 2, booth number 80722. We will have several of our upcoming colabs to show, Spring Summer ’22 TD Apparel, MTHD and Battle Briefs. We also, have a ton of giveaways for people who come say hi.