US Naval Reactors engineer arrested on espionage-related charges involving sale of Virginia-class submarine data
11 October 2021
by Michael Fabey
Jonathan Toebbe, an engineer for the US Navy (USN) Naval Reactors, and his wife Diana, both of Annapolis, Maryland, were arrested on 9 October in Jefferson County, West Virginia, by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the US Naval Criminal Investigative Service, and charged in a criminal complaint alleging violations of the US Atomic Energy Act, the US Department of Justice confirmed on 10 October.
The couple sold information known as Restricted Data concerning the design of nuclear-powered warships to a person they believed was a representative of a foreign power, the Justice Department said in a release.
NATO allies to confront 21st century threats with new multidomain approach
22 October 2021
by Brooks Tigner
NATO's newly approved Concept for Deterrence and Defence of the Euro-Atlantic Area calls for “the right forces at the right place at the right time”, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told reporters on 21 October. (NATO)
NATO defence ministers agreed on the first day of their 21–22 October meeting in Brussels to fundamentally change how they protect their collective territory against attacks, especially from Russia and terrorist groups. Their newly approved Concept for Deterrence and Defence of the Euro-Atlantic Area lays the groundwork for new sub-regional military planning in the coming months.
Russian casualties mounting in Central African Republic: Janes Analysis
19 October 2021
Reports indicate 11 Russian-backed contractors have been killed in the Central African Republic (CAR) since August: the first consistent reports of Russian fatalities since their deployment in 2018.
Correlating reports from local news organizations, Janes has identified four instances that resulted in the deaths of Russian-backed contractors.
Most recently, on 12 October, five foreign contractors were killed in an ambush laid by rebels in the Bombo area in western CAR. Three contractors were reportedly killed in an ambush near Bombo on 2 October. A contractor was killed when rebels ambushed a convoy near the Cameroonian border on 1 September. A further two Russian-backed contractors were reportedly killed in a rebel ambush in Koui, close to the CAR's border with Cameroon on 5 August.
Russian military contractors have been present in the CAR since 2018, when the UN Security Council approved their deployment to help train and advise Central African Armed Forces (FACA) personnel, as well as transport them to operational areas, provide logistical support, and medical evacuation.
The UN panel of experts that monitors the CAR reported in June that the number of contractors appeared to significantly exceed the authorized deployment and included non-Russians, including Arab speakers. They were also taking an active role in combat operations against rebel militias. It identified seven helicopters – some of them armed – and two An-28 transport aircraft that were being used by the contractors.
Imagery obtained from social media affiliated with the Russian military contractor community also indicates they are equipped with Russian-made Orlan-10 unmanned aerial vehicles and some light armored vehicles.
This article - published to Janes subscribers on 15 October 2021 - can be read in full by logging in here.
US-based Rocket Lab has continued to expand beyond its core business of launch vehicles by acquiring Advanced Solutions Inc (ASI), which develops flight software for spacecraft, Rocket Lab announced on 12 October.
ASI will become part of Rocket Lab's Space Systems business, which includes the new Photon small satellite and a satellite parts manufacturer that Rocket Lab acquired last year. While Rocket Lab's flagship product is the Electron small satellite launch vehicle, which first flew in 2017, it envisions itself as an “end-to-end space company” and not just a launch provider.
How to become an effective leader with Lt Col Langley Sharp
In this episode of the Janes podcast, Lt Col Langley Sharp shares lessons learned in leadership from his career in the Parachute Regiment which has seen him deployed to Northern Ireland, Macedonia, Afghanistan and Iraq. Among his many varied rol...