• Drones vs. balloonsIsrael deploys tracking system to fight incendiary balloons and kites

    Israel’s famed military prowess has come up against a decidedly low-tech adversary, the humble party balloon, and found itself thwarted. Over the past few weeks, the residents of the Gaza Strip have let loose a barrage of colorful kites with burning tails as well as festive balloons, sometimes condoms, with fuel-soaked strips of cloth. They land inside Israeli territory, often starting serious fires. Israel has now deployed a system to track balloons and kites carrying burning material across the border.

  • DronesDrones could be used to detect dangerous “butterfly” landmines

    It is estimated that there are at least 100 million military munitions and explosives of concern devices in the world, of various size, shape and composition. Millions of these are surface plastic landmines with low-pressure triggers, such as the mass-produced Soviet PFM-1 “butterfly” landmine. Drones could be used to detect dangerous “butterfly” landmines in remote regions of post-conflict countries.

  • DronesRecommended: An action plan on U.S. drone policy

    Drones have become a mainstay of U.S. counterterrorism operations and national security policy writ large. The Obama administration popularized the use of armed drones, and U.S. drone policy have only become more salient during the Trump administration – but the Trump administration’s approach to U.S. drone policy has thus far revealed a desire to roll back some of the principles, procedures, and guidelines put in place by the Obama administration.

  • The Russia connectionCold War-era KGB “active measures” and the Kremlin’s contemporary way of war

    Bob Seely, a Conservative MP for the Isle of Wight and a Russia researcher, has just published the first comprehensive definition of the nature of modern Russian warfare. The paper draws a direct comparison between Cold War-era KGB “Active Measures” and the aggression of Putin’s Russia. “From fake news aimed at Europe to the propaganda of RT, and from the occupation of Crimea to the streets of Salisbury, Russia is waging a very modern kind of conflict on the West – as well as on the Russian people themselves,” Seely said.

  • DetectionNew tool to detect deadly chemical weapon agents: Butterflies

    Every spring caterpillars shed their cocoons, emerging as butterflies. This timeless symbol of change is now being applied to enhanced chemical detection for U.S. soldiers. Researchers from the military service academies, funded by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s Chemical and Biological Technologies Department, are using butterflies to detect trace amounts of chemical warfare agents with increased precision and speed.

  • Sonic weaponsChina sonic attack: how sound can be a weapon

    By Ian McLoughlin

    Reports of “sonic attacks” in China, and previously in Cuba, have left many wandering whether sonic weapons could be targeting U.S. diplomats. Victims have reportedly experienced mild brain injuries with symptoms including “subtle and vague, but abnormal, sensations of sound and pressure.” Little is known for definite, but the symptoms do suggest that some sort of sonic interference could have taken place. It is unlikely to be the result of a deliberate “sonic attack.” Instead, these injuries are probably the side effects of intrusive surveillance.

  • African securityU.S. troops help fight terrorists in Africa -- quietly

    The attack on the U.S. troops in Niger last October, which left four American troops dead and two wounded, was a surprise to the American public because the presence of the U.S. forces in Africa was mostly off the media. The Niger operation is one of the several U.S. military missions ongoing in about twenty African countries, mostly in the northern half of the continent. Most of these missions have one goal: “rolling back Islamist extremism.”

  • F-35A first: Israel the first country to deploy F-35 in combat

    Israel has become the first air force in the world to use the F-35 stealth fighter in military operations, according to Israel Air Force sources. The state-of-the-art stealth fighter was not involved in the most recent Israeli strike against Iranian targets in Syria, but was involved in two operations before that.

  • The Russia connectionPutin’s doctrine blends “bare-face lying,” “social media disinformation,” and “criminal thuggery”: MI5 Director

    In a speech on Wednesday, MI5 Director General Andrew Parker discussed the security challenges the West is facing, chief among them the threat from Russia. Parker said the threat from Russia is a “hybrid threat,” as Russia is a practitioner of a doctrine “blending media manipulation, social media disinformation and distortion with new and old forms of espionage, high levels of cyberattacks, military force, and criminal thuggery.” Parker added: “Our democracies, our societies and our bonds of partnership are strong. But we must not be complacent about the longer-term potential impact of this [Russian] activity on the international rules-based order that supports our security and prosperity.”

  • DronesCountering drones in urban environments

    New technology can provide advances in the way we do things, expanding areas previously left unexplored and simplifying previously burdensome tasks. This is true with advancements in Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), or drones. Given their rapid technology advancement and proliferation, the public safety and homeland security communities must address the fact that drones can be used nefariously or maliciously to hurt people, disrupt activities and damage infrastructure.

  • Israel-IranIsrael-Iran clashes: Latest updates

    Iranian forces in Syria did not ask the Syrian government for permission, or even notify Syrian leaders, before launching twenty missiles at Israel. Fox News said it had learn from European sources that, “The Iranian major general in charge of the Al-Quds Force in Syria, Qassem Soleimani, launched last night’s attack against Israel without the knowledge or the consent of the Assad regime.” Moreover, Iran launched the twenty missiles at Israel after being warned by Russia not to do so.

  • Israel-IranIsrael destroyed “nearly all” of Iran’s military infrastructure in Syria

    On Wednesday night, in the largest Israeli air campaign against Syria since the 1973 war, and the largest-ever direct clash between the Iranian and Israeli militaries, Israel launched 70 missiles – 60 air-to-ground missiles fired from 28 F-15 and F-16 flying over Syria and Lebanon, and 10 surface-to-surface missiles launched from inside Israel — at key Iranian military targets all across Syria. Israel’s Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said that the Israel had destroyed “nearly all” of Iran’s military infrastructure sites in Syria.

  • Civil defenseIsraeli rocket experience shows bomb shelters matter as much as interceptors

    By Michael J. Armstrong

    The conflict between Israel and Iran emerged from the shadows early Thursday morning. Israel is worried about Iran’s deployment of missiles in Syria – and about Hezbollah’s 100,000 to 150,000 rockets. Other countries face rocket and missile threats too. It’s not surprising then that missile interceptors are in fashion. Israel credited its Iron Dome system with intercepting four rockets on Thursday. Civil defenses like warning sirens and bomb shelters receive less press coverage. Spectacular interceptor launches are more photogenic than concrete block houses. But Israel’s own experience shows civil defenses deserve at least as much attention as interceptors.

  • IranAssad will be killed, his regime toppled if Iran attacks from Syria: Israeli official

    An Israeli government minister on Monday threatened that Israel could kill Syrian President Bashar Assad if his government does not prevent Iranian forces from launching attacks against Israel from Syrian territory. “If Assad continues to let the Iranians operate from Syrian soil, he should know that he signed his own death warrant and that it will be his end. We will topple his regime,” Yuval Steinitz, a member of the security cabinet and a close ally of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, said.

  • SyriaAttacks on healthcare in Syria are likely undercounted

    Attacks on health facilities and health workers in Syria are likely more common than previously reported, and local data collectors can help researchers more accurately to measure the extent and frequency of these attacks, according to a new study. The researchers found that in 2016 alone, there were more than 200 attacks on healthcare-related targets in four northern governorates of Syria, with 176 of the attacks targeting hospitals and other healthcare facilities.