Petraeus resets Afghan airstrike rules

Industry wants changes in DoD contract reforms

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  • General David Petraeus, only weeks into his command of troops in Afghanistan, is already making changes. Following a review of the rules of engagement, U.S. commanders have updated one rule that’s caused discontent among troops. The Wall Street Journal reports, it is now clear that troops may request air and artillery strikes against insurgents hiding in run-down or abandoned buildings. Previously, troops were under the impression they could not fire on such structures. More strategy review will take place this year. The strategy was the work of retired General Stanley McChrystal. Meanwhile, President Obama signed a $59 billion emergency war supplemental spending package. It provides $33.5 billion for Iraq and Afghanistan expenses, including adding 30,000 troops for Afghanistan.
  • Provisions in the House and Senate 2011 defense authorization bills could inadvertently increase government spending and limit competition for defense contracts, a coalition of eight trade associations warned lawmakers July 28. Of particular concern to industry are sections in the legislation that cover the transition of contracted work to federal employees, and restrictions on what criteria are used in contract awards.

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