Turkmenistan Wary of Afghan Border

by Derek Bisaccio, International Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov steps out of a truck and, after posing for pictures, takes aim at several targets, first with a rifle, then a handgun, and lastly throwing knives. He then calls in helicopter strikes during the military exercise. The video, which first aired on Turkmen State TV, gained prominence after the Chronicles of Turkmenistan, a dissident website, satirized the original by editing in clips of Arnold Schwarzenegger in Commando, a 1985 movie. Continue reading

Dolphins in Trouble

by Stuart Slade, Senior Naval Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

Dolphin-Class Submarine. Source: IDF Navy

With the original group of Dolphin-class submarines designed to have a hull life of 30 years and a design initiation-to-commissioning cycle of at least 10-15 years, attention turned to designing replacements for the first three submarines in 2015.  At first, Israeli ambitions seemed somewhat excessive, with references to “an entirely different submarine from the Dolphin or the Dolphin AIP.” Reality appears to have set in, however, with attention now focused on an upgraded version of the Flight II Dolphin class that includes “some room for growth, with new materials, better sonar … but pretty much the same design.” Continue reading

Gulf Dispute Reaches Boiling Point

by Derek Bisaccio, International Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

U.S. President Donald Trump attends meeting with Gulf Cooperation Council leaders on May 21, 2017.
Source: White House

Early on June 5, a number of Arab countries announced in concert their decision to sever ties with Gulf State Qatar. The move by the four countries – Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – came just days after a hacker group announced it would release a trove of emails purportedly belonging to the Emirati Ambassador to the United States. Continue reading

Emirati Regional Military Footprint Continues to Grow

by Derek Bisaccio, Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Emirati BMP-3 during Joint U.S.-UAE Military Exercise in Kuwait in September 2016
Source: U.S. Army

“The Federation preserves our identity and enhances our capabilities.  It is a strong shield for protecting the security and stability of the Arabian Gulf Region.” – Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates and Emir of Abu Dhabi

Amid the instability in the Middle East that followed the 2010 and 2011 protest movements, as well as a perceived vacuum as the United States asserts a desire to extricate itself from Middle Eastern conflicts, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has seen a growing need to put its military to use securing regional interests. Continue reading

Denel Taps New Markets, Seeks New Partners at Home and Abroad

by Richard Pettibone, Aerospace & Defense Companies Analyst, Forecast International.

Denel’s Rooivalk Attack Helicopter. Source: Denel

Despite some recent management troubles, Denel remains stable.  The company plays a key role in the self-sufficiency of South Africa’s defense industry, and the government will continue to support the firm with work. That said, government work has been declining of late due to tight budgets, forcing Denel to adapt. Continue reading

U.S. President Trump Orders Tomahawk Strikes on Syrian Airbase

by Derek Bisaccio, Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Tomahawk missile launch

The guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) launches a Tomahawk missile (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Ford Williams/Released)

Early on April 7, 2017, the United States Navy conducted Tomahawk missile strikes on al-Shayrat airbase in Homs, Syria, in retaliation for an alleged chemical weapons attack earlier in the week on Khan Sheikhoun, in opposition-controlled Idlib. The strikes mark the first time the United States has deliberately targeted the Syrian military since an uprising began in 2011. Continue reading

The Effect of 2016’s Presidential Election on Worldwide Aerospace and Defense Markets Part 1/2

By Matthew Beres, Forecast International.

election-2016

Welcome to the Forecast Roundtable Podcast. Forecast Roundtable brings together expert analysts, industry professionals, and government officials to discuss the latest issues in the aerospace and defense markets. Produced at the Forecast International headquarters, Forecast Roundtable offers unique and in depth insight and discussion on any range of topics from geopolitics to aerospace and defense markets. Topic suggestions are welcome. Continue reading

Mosul Offensive a Test for Iraqi Forces

by Derek Bisaccio, Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi (R) meets with U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter (L) in Baghdad, October 22, 2016. Source: U.S. Department of Defense

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi (R) meets with U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter (L) in Baghdad, October 22, 2016. Source: U.S. Department of Defense

Early on October 17, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced that the much-anticipated operation to retake Mosul from the Islamic State had finally begun. “The hour has come and the moment of great victory is near,” he declared on national TV, thereby setting off the offensive that Iraq’s military and allied militias – backed by international airpower – have been preparing for ever since I.S. forces swept into Mosul over two years ago. Continue reading

Forecast Roundtable – The Syrian Conflict

By Matthew Beres and Derek Bisaccio, Forecast International.

2podcast logo

Welcome to the Forecast Roundtable Podcast. Forecast Roundtable brings together expert analysts, industry professionals, and government officials to discuss the latest issues in the aerospace and defense markets. Produced at the Forecast International headquarters, Forecast Roundtable offers unique and in depth insight and discussion on any range of topics from geopolitics to aerospace and defense markets. Topic suggestions are welcome.
Continue reading

Russia Deploys Bombers to Iranian Air Base

by Derek Bisaccio, Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Russian Su-34 jet. Source: Russian Ministry of Defense

Russian Su-34 jet. Source: Russian Ministry of Defense

In a significant development for the conflict in Syria and for the Middle East generally, Russia has deployed a number of bombers to an air base in western Iran. The bombers – Tu-22M3s and Su-34s – will conduct airstrikes from the Hamedan air base against militant groups in Syria, in support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces. Continue reading