27 January 2010

BUB: World Roundup

Today's Battle Update Brief looks around the world at a few developing stories

Honduran military officers are cleared of coup-related charges.
The Supreme Court cleared six high-ranking military officers on Tuesday of charges of abuse of power in last summer’s coup. The six, including the armed forces chief of staff, Gen. Romeo Vásquez Velásquez, were accused of illegally expelling President Manuel Zelaya from the country. A court had ordered the military to detain Mr. Zelaya, and the Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that the commanders had not acted with malice and that they had Mr. Zelaya flown to Costa Rica to avoid violence. Mr. Zelaya’s term ends Wednesday, when he is expected to leave Honduras for the Dominican Republic.


The NATO surge is having difficulty meeting their numbers.
NATO is struggling to make good on commitments to deploy extra forces to Afghanistan, one month after the Obama administration said it was counting on the alliance to send as many as 10,000 more troops to serve alongside U.S. soldiers.

On Tuesday, Germany said it would send 500 reinforcements to Afghanistan, disappointing U.S. officials, who had been pressing Berlin for at least three times that number. German officials, facing stiff domestic opposition to the war, said they would instead double their development aid to Afghanistan and begin withdrawing soldiers in 2011.

"We have nothing to be ashamed of," Chancellor Angela Merkel told reporters in Berlin. "It was not the case that the Americans asked us what we wanted to do, but rather we determined ourselves what we intend to do."

After President Obama announced his revised Afghan strategy in December, including the deployment of 30,000 more U.S. troops, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said allies had pledged about 7,000 "fresh forces." He also raised expectations that further commitments would be announced soon.

NATO leaders had been lobbying Germany and France, in particular, ahead of an international conference on Afghanistan scheduled for Thursday in London. On Monday, however, French President Nicolas Sarkozy reaffirmed his previous refusals to send additional combat forces to Afghanistan, although he held out the possibility of dispatching more military trainers and civilian aid workers.

NATO has not provided a precise breakdown of where its promised 7,000 new troops will come from. But it appears that only about 4,000 of those forces were not previously announced or deployed.


CyberWar cooperation is becoming more popular as resources are pooled to fend of the Chinese.

The US and its Nato allies have been urged to collaborate more intensely to fend off the threat of cyberattacks in the aftermath of the alleged Chinese assault on Google.

The Pentagon’s top cyber-strategist said shared warning systems had to be established and government contacts broadened.

In an interview with the Financial Times, William J. Lynn, US deputy defence secretary, said America and the UK had been working to counter the growing international danger of cyberattacks.

But he warned that the US, UK and other states had to deepen cross-border collaboration if they were to deal with a form of warfare that ignored national boundaries.

“You can’t just protect the system by defending yourself from inside your own country,” Mr Lynn said on a visit to London. “International co-operation is imperative for establishing the chain of events in an intrusion and quickly and decisively fighting back.”

Mr Lynn said the US defence department was subjected to thousands of cyber attacks each day, as hackers sought to break into systems run by the Pentagon.

“The kind of defence we want is not something akin to the Maginot Line, but more like manoeuvre warfare. You can’t just sit behind firewalls. You need an active defence that is seeking out and countering threats on the internet,” he said.

By: Brant

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