Daily on Defense: Russian rapid advance spooks Ukraine, Israel pushes deeper into Rafah, Cotton accuses Biden of imposing arms embargo on Israel

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BY JAMIE MCINTYRE

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ZELENSKY: 'FIERCE BATTLES ARE ONGOING': As it continues to take advantage of Ukraine's outgunned and undermanned forces, Russia is making a major push along a new front in the north, coming dangerously close to artillery range to lay siege to Kharkiv, Ukraine's second largest city.

In an urgent video address to his nation last night, President Volodymyr Zelensky called for "maximum efficiency" in repelling Russian forces, who claim to have taken at least nine villages and settlements, advancing at an ominous pace, in contrast to the slow, grinding, monthslong assault along the eastern front.

"Everything depends on what you are capable of in a war — whether you can withstand the attacks and hold your ground so that everyone else can do the same," Zelensky exhorted his war-weary troops in the Kharkiv region. "Defensive battles are ongoing, fierce battles on a large part of our border area. There are villages that have actually turned from a gray zone into a combat zone, and the occupier is trying to gain a foothold in some of them."

"In particular, on the outskirts of Vovchansk, the situation is extremely difficult, the city is under constant Russian fire, and our military is carrying out counterattacks," Zelensky said. "Our task is obvious — we need to inflict as many losses as possible on the occupier."

'THE RUSSIANS JUST WALKED IN': Russia claims to have entered the border town of Vovchansk and that overwhelmed Ukrainian forces are in full retreat. 

Ukraine's General Staff in a Facebook update said fighting continues, but it conceded that "at present, the enemy has tactical success."

"The enemy has deployed significant forces to attack the city with up to five battalions and is not counting its own losses," the update said. "Our defenders conduct defensive actions, inflict fire on the enemy, extensively deploy unmanned systems for reconnaissance and mission point strikes to target maximum losses."

But one Ukrainian commander said that a few days ago, small columns of Russian troops simply walked across the border unopposed. "There was no first line of defense. We saw it. The Russians just walked in," Denys Yaroslavskyi, commander of a Ukrainian Special Reconnaissance Unit, told the BBC. "The first line of fortifications and mines simply did not exist," he wrote on Facebook. With as many as 30,000 Russian troops pouring across the border, Denys said he fears Vovchansk could soon be back in Russian hands.

RUSSIA ANNOUNCES SHAKE-UP TO PUTIN'S NATIONAL SECURITY TEAM

ISW: RUSSIAN SUCCESS A 'CONSEQUENCE' OF US POLICY: Ukraine knew the Russian assault was coming. It could see the Russian forces massing on the border, but under Biden administration restrictions for the use of U.S.-supplied weapons, it was unable to attack the Russian formations.

"Russian offensive efforts to seize Vovchansk are in large part a consequence of the tacit Western policy that Ukrainian forces cannot use Western-provided systems to strike legitimate military targets within Russia," the Institute for the Study of War wrote in last night's battlefield update.

The Russian advance has sent thousands of Ukrainian civilians fleeing to Kharkiv. The New York Times described the scene in a Kharkiv reception center on Sunday as "exhausted people shouting at each other and families with no place to go spilling out onto the grass."

"In the coming weeks, Russia will likely increase the intensity of fires and commit additional troops in an attempt to establish a shallow buffer zone along the Ukrainian border," National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said Friday. "We are confident in the Ukrainian armed forces, and we are working around the clock to get them the equipment, the tools, the weapons that they need to defend against these attacks."

"The Department of Defense is moving rapidly to deliver these supplies to Ukraine," Kirby said, noting the restrictions on their use. "They have provided Ukraine with long-range ATACMS for use inside sovereign territory, denying Russian forces safe haven anywhere inside Ukraine."

"It is possible that Russia will make further advances in the coming weeks, but we do not anticipate any major breakthroughs, and over time, the influx of U.S. assistance will enable Ukraine to withstand these attacks over the course of 2024," Kirby said. "The path ahead will be challenging, but no one should underestimate the Ukrainian people, and no one should underestimate President Biden’s commitment and resolve to standing with Ukraine."

NATO'S NEWEST ALLY PREPARED TO ACT AS A 'PORCUPINE' IF RUSSIA WAR COMES

Good Monday morning and welcome to Jamie McIntyre's Daily on Defense, written and compiled by Washington Examiner National Security Senior Writer Jamie McIntyre (@jamiejmcintyre) and edited by Stacey Dec. Email here with tips, suggestions, calendar items, and anything else. Sign up or read current and back issues at DailyonDefense.com. If signing up doesn't work, shoot us an email and we'll add you to our list. And be sure to follow me on Threads and/or on X @jamiejmcintyre

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HAPPENING TODAY: ISRAEL PUSHES DEEPER INTO RAFAH: Undeterred by President Joe Biden's threat to stop shipping "high-payload" bombs to Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is pressing forward with his plans to wipe out Hama's last stronghold in Rafah, in southern Gaza.

"We are determined and we are united in order to defeat our enemies and those who want to destroy us," Netanyahu said in a defiant recorded statement last week. "If we need to stand alone, we will stand alone. I have said that if necessary, we will fight with our fingernails."

"Israeli forces pushed deeper into the southern city of Rafah," reported the Associated Press. "Israel also pounded the territory's devastated north, where some Hamas militants have regrouped in areas the military said it had cleared months ago."

In appearances on CBS News and NBC News on Sunday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the U.S. position has not changed because Israel has so far failed to provide assurances that the hundreds of thousands of civilians in Gaza will be protected.

"What we’ve been clear about is that if Israel launches this major military operation into Rafah, then there’s certain systems that we’re not going to be supporting and supplying for that operation," Blinken said on CBS News's Face the Nation. "But at present, the only thing that we’ve delayed and are holding back are these high-payload bombs because we’re in an ongoing conversation with Israel, given the impact that those weapons can have when they’re used in densely populated areas, including an area like Rafah."

"We believe two things. One, you have to have a clear, credible plan to protect civilians, which we haven’t seen," Blinken told CBS News's Margaret Brennan. "Second, we also need to see a plan for what happens after this conflict in Gaza is over. And we still haven’t seen that."

US 'CONCERNED' WITH LIMITED ISRAELI RAFAH OPERATION

US SAYS ISRAEL 'LIKELY' VIOLATED HUMANITARIAN LAW: Blinken's criticism of Israel's Rafah offensive comes days after the State Department sent a report to Congress saying that available evidence suggests Israel may have violated international humanitarian law in airstrikes that used U.S.-provided weapons.

"What the report concludes is that, based on the totality of the harm that’s been done to children, to women, to men who are caught in this crossfire of Hamas’s making, it’s reasonable to conclude that there are instances where Israel has acted in ways that are not consistent with international humanitarian law," Blinken said on NBC News. "The report also makes clear that this is an incredibly complex military environment. You have an enemy that intentionally embeds itself with civilians, hiding under and within schools, mosques, apartment buildings, firing at the Israeli forces from those places. It’s very, very difficult in the heat of war to make a definitive assessment about any individual incident."

The report was required under National Security Memorandum 20 issued by Biden in February. 

"NSM-20 serves no purpose other than to provide political cover to the president with his base," Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX), chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said in a statement, calling the report "wholly redundant and unnecessary" and saying it "only contributes to politically-motivated anti-Israel sentiment."

"Now is the time for the United States to stand with our ally Israel and ensure they have the tools they need to quickly defeat the terrorists who pose a threat to their very existence," McCaul said.

COTTON ARGUES GAZA WAR WOULD 'PROBABLY' ALREADY BE OVER UNDER TRUMP'S LEADERSHIP

COTTON: BIDEN HAS IMPOSED A 'DE FACTO ARMS EMBARGO': Republican supporters of Israel argue that Biden's ban on large, 2,000-pound bombs will actually limit Israel’s ability to conduct precision strikes, which limit collateral damage and unintended civilian casualties.

"The reason Israel needs these larger bombs is because Hamas has buried tunnels or they’re holding hostages and where its leaders are holed up deeply underground," Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) said on CBS News. 

"What we’re worried about is a sort of defiance of congressional intent here that we have passed these weapons out of Congress and now the president’s holding them back," McCaul said on ABC News, adding that "most of these weapons … are precision-guided weapons. And that means precise, and that means that it spares civilian casualties because the targeting is so precise."

"They’re also potentially delaying the kits that allow these so-called dumb bombs to become smart precision bombs," Cotton said. "Joe Biden’s position is de facto for a Hamas victory at this point. Israel’s goal is to destroy Hamas, which committed the worst atrocity against Jews since World War II. … He has imposed a de facto arms embargo on Israel and sanctions on Israelis."

MCCAUL BLASTS BIDEN FOR WITHHOLDING 'PRECISE' WEAPONS FROM ISRAEL

THE RUNDOWN: 

Washington Examiner: US 'concerned' with limited Israeli Rafah operation

Washington Examiner: 'Israel will stand alone': Netanyahu signals what he thinks of Biden's Rafah red line

Washington Examiner: McCaul blasts Biden for withholding 'precise' weapons from Israel

Washington Examiner: Cotton argues Gaza war would 'probably' already be over under Trump's leadership

Washington Examiner: Coons warns Netanyahu his legacy could be the breakdown of relations between the US and Israel

Washington Examiner: Netanyahu tells Dr. Phil he hopes he and Biden can 'overcome' Rafah differences

Washington Examiner: Biden's Rafah red line was months in the making

Washington Examiner: Hamas's 'human shields' make it tough to conclude if Israel violated international law, US says

Washington Examiner: Hamas's hostages: Who are the five remaining Americans still held by the terror group?

Washington Examiner: Air Force secretary rebuffs pleas from governors over Space Force National Guard plans

Washington Examiner: NATO's newest ally prepared to act as a 'porcupine' if Russia war comes

Washington Examiner: Russia announces shake-up to Putin's national security team

Washington Examiner: GOP defense hawks chafe under budget caps they imposed on themselves

Washington Examiner: Civilians who saved head of Marines after he suffered medical emergency receive award

Washington Examiner: Opinion: Saluting Xi Jinping, Hungary's Orban mocks his American supporters

Washington Examiner: Opinion: Chinese state media outlet shows support for Russia war on Ukraine

Washington Examiner: Opinion: Trump shouldn't use the Secret Service as a campaign prop

Washington Post: Asia's next war could be triggered by a rusting warship on a disputed reef

AP: U.S. Announces New $400 Million Package Of Weapons For Ukraine To Try To Hold Off Russian Advances

New York Times: Ukraine's Grain Shipments Rebound To Near Prewar Levels

AP: US Aims to Stay Ahead of China in Using AI to Fly Fighter Jets, Navigate Without GPS, and More

Reuters: Philippines Sends Ships To Disputed Atoll Where China Building ‘Artificial Island’

AP: Sleepy Far-Flung Towns In The Philippines Will Host U.S. Forces Returning To Counter China Threats

Defense One: ‘Swarm Pilots’ Will Need New Tactics—and Entirely New Training Methods: Air Force Special-Ops Chief

Wall Street Journal: As Silicon Valley Pivots to Patriotic Capital, China Ties Linger

Breaking Defense: Taking Aim: Army Leaders Ponder Mix of Precision Munitions vs. Conventional

Washington Post: On a D.C. sidewalk, a race to save a Marine general's life

Washington Post: How Fat Leonard compromised admirals in charge of Navy intelligence

Air & Space Forces Magazine: F-35s Lead 50 USAF Aircraft in NATO Air Defense Exercise

Defense News: DARPA Taps Aurora to Keep Designing Heavy Cargo Seaplane in $8.3M Deal

Air & Space Forces Magazine: Air Force's New 'Doomsday' Plane Will Be Converted from Korean Air Passenger Jets

Air & Space Forces Magazine: New Report: Space Force Should Develop Its Own Targeting Satellites

SpaceNews: Defense Space Policy Chief Calls Russia's Space Nuke Threat "a Thing Apart"

Aviation Week: Internal Debate Delays Israeli Purchase of F-35, F-15EX Fighters

Stars and Stripes: Navy Probes Apparent Drone Footage Of USS Ronald Reagan Posted On Social Media

Air & Space Forces Magazine: What Kinds of Jobs Can Part-Time Guardians Expect?

Air & Space Forces Magazine: USAF F-15s Return Home from Middle East With Kill Markings and Nose Art

Marine Corps Times: Marine Shielded His Student From Grenade With His Body — And Survived

The Cipher Brief: South China Sea Flareups Raise Fears of Wider Conflict

The Cipher Brief: Opinion: More Must Be Done to Prevent a Nuclear Nightmare

The Cipher Brief: On Putin's "Victory Day," A Warning to the West

The Cipher Brief: Opinion: Where is the Sense of Urgency on Ukraine?

THE CALENDAR: 

MONDAY | MAY 13

9:30 a.m. 1201 Pennsylvania Ave. NW — Hudson Institute discussion: “Foreshocks in the Black Sea and Western Balkans: Repercussions of the Russia-Ukraine War," with Richard Kraemer, president of the U.S.-Europe Alliance; Luke Coffey, Hudson Institute senior fellow; Dalibor Rohac, American Enterprise Institute senior fellow; Iulia Joja, director, Middle East Institute’s Black Sea Program; Alina Nychyk, postdoctoral researcher at ETH Zurich; Reuf Bajrovic, vice president of the U.S.-Europe Alliance and former minister of energy, mining, and industry for Bosnia and Herzegovina; Daniel Serwer, professor, Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies; Ivana Stradner, research fellow, Foundation for Defense of Democracies; and Tanya Domi, adjunct professor at Columbia University https://www.hudson.org/events/foreshocks-black-sea

10 a.m. — Center for Strategic and International Studies virtual discussion: “Strengthening NATO’s European Pillar,” with Sophia Besch, fellow, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace's Europe Program; Max Bergmann, director, CSIS Europe, Russia, and Eurasia Program; Mathieu Droin, visiting fellow, CSIS Europe, Russia, and Eurasia Program; and Sean Monaghan, visiting fellow, CSIS Europe, Russia, and Eurasia Program https://www.csis.org/events/strengthening-natos-european-pillar

10 a.m. — Wilson Center Indo-Pacific Program discussion: “The Way Ahead to Secure Taiwan’s Resilience,” with Taiwan’s Representative to the U.S. Alexander Tah-ray Yui; former Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte; former Assistant Secretary of Defense for Strategy and Force Development Elbridge Colby, co-founder of the Marathon Initiative; Carolyn Bartholomew, former chairwoman of the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission; and Robert Daly, director, Wilson Center’s Kissinger Institute on China and the U.S. RSVP: [email protected]

10:30 a.m. 1775 Massachusetts Ave. NW — Brookings Institution Foreign Policy Program book discussion: The Insiders’ Game: How Elites Make War and Peace, with author Elizabeth Saunders, nonresident senior fellow in foreign policy, Brookings Institution Strobe Talbott Center for Security, Strategy, and Technology; E.J. Dionne, chairman and senior fellow in governance studies, Brookings Institution; Michael O’Hanlon, director of research in foreign policy, Brookings Institution; Kori Schake, director of foreign policy and defense policy studies, American Enterprise Institute; and Edward Luce, U.S. national editor and columnist, Financial Times https://www.brookings.edu/events/the-insiders-game

11 a.m. — Center for Strategic and International Studies virtual podcast discussion: “Can South Korea Save Ukraine?” with Victor Cha, CSIS Korea chairman; Mark Cancian, senior adviser, CSIS International Security Program; and Chris Park, CSIS chairman in strategy https://www.csis.org/events/impossible-state-live-podcast

1 p.m. 1030 15th St. NW — Atlantic Council discussion: “Implementing the U.S. International Cyberspace and Digital Policy Strategy.” https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/event/a-discussion

1 p.m. 2301 Constitution Ave. NW — U.S. Institute of Peace discussion: “Transnational Organized Crime in Southeast Asia Countering the Rise of Scam Compounds and the Far-Reaching Criminal Networks Behind Them,” with Erin West, deputy district attorney, Santa Clara County Office of the District Attorney’s REACT Task Force; Jacob Sims, USIP visiting expert; Jason Tower, USIP Burma country director; and Nicole Cochran, USIP Burma program officer https://www.usip.org/events/transnational-organized-crime-southeast-asia

3:30 p.m. 1030 15th St. NW — Atlantic Council discussion: “Strengthening the middle ground of the defense-industrial landscape,” with Ellen Lord, former undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment; former Deputy Defense Secretary William Lynn, chairman and CEO of Leonardo DRS; and former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Industrial Affairs and Installations John Goodman, CEO of Accenture Federal Services https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/event/strengthening-the-middleground

6 p.m. — Council on Foreign Relations virtual discussion: “U.S. defense priorities around the world and the state of the American armed forces,” with Army chief of staff Gen. Randy George; Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Eric Smith; Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Lisa Franchetti; Air Force chief of staff Gen. David Allvin; Space Force Chief of Space Operations Gen. B. Chance Saltzman; and Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Linda Fagan https://www.cfr.org/event/robert-b-mckeon-endowed-series

TUESDAY | MAY 14

9 a.m. — German Marshall Fund of the U.S. virtual discussion: “From Ukraine to the Middle East: How Crisis-Proof is European Foreign Policy?” with Riccardo Alcaro, head of the Institute of International Affairs’s Global Actors Program; Nathalie Tocci, director, Institute of International Affairs; Lisa Musiol, head of EU affairs, International Crisis Group; Henry Foy, Financial Times Brussels bureau chief; Alexandros Yannis, head of policy planning and strategic foresight, European External Action Service; and Kristina Kausch, deputy managing director and senior fellow at GMF South https://www.gmfus.org/event/ukraine-middle-east

9 a.m. — New America virtual Space Intersections Symposium: “How will religious and political ideologies define the future of human expansion into space?” with Ken Wisian, associate professor, University of Texas, Austin, and Namrata Goswami, professor at Arizona State University’s School of Global Management https://www.newamerica.org/future-tense/events/online

10 a.m. — U.S. Institute of Peace virtual discussion: “Counterterrorism in Afghanistan and Pakistan,” with Laurel Miller, president and CEO of the Asia Foundation; retired Lt. Gen. Michael Nagata, strategic adviser and senior vice president of CACI International; Asfandyar Mir, USIP senior expert for South Asia; and Tamanna Salikuddin, director of USIP South Asia programs https://www.usip.org/events/counterterrorism-afghanistan-and-pakistan

11 a.m. 1775 Massachusetts Ave. NW— Brookings Institution Foreign Policy Program discussion: “Two Years Into the Biden Administration’s Indo-Pacific Strategy,” with Assistant State Secretary for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Daniel Kritenbrink; Mireya Solis, director, Brookings Institution Center for Asia Policy Studies, senior fellow in foreign policy, Brookings Institution Center for Asia Policy Studies, and chairwoman in Japan Studies; and Tanvi Madan, senior fellow in foreign policy, Brookings Institution Center for Asia Policy Studies https://www.brookings.edu/events/two-years-into-the-biden-administrations-indo-pacific-strategy

1 p.m. Honolulu, Hawaii — The Association of the U.S. Army three-day "LANPAC Symposium and Exposition" begins, with the theme "Campaigning with Landpower." Speakers include Gen. Charles Flynn, commander, U.S. Army Pacific, and commanders from the U.S. Army Futures Command and the Japanese, South Korean, and Australian armies. Register: https://meetings.ausa.org/LANPAC/2024

2 p.m. 1616 Rhode Island Ave. NW — Center for Strategic and International Studies discussion: “Operations in the Red Sea: Lessons for Surface Warfare,” with Rear Adm. Fred Pyle, director, Surface Warfare Division, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations https://www.csis.org/events/operations-red-sea-lessons-surface-warfare

2 p.m. — Government Executive Media Group virtual discussion: “Capitalizing on Cyber Capabilities: A Dispatch from Modern Day Marine 2024,” with Deputy Marine Corps Commandant for Information Lt. Gen. Matthew Glavy and Tommy Gardner, chief technology officer at HP Federal https://events.govexec.com/hp-amd-capitalizing-on-cyber-capabilities

WEDNESDAY | MAY 15

9 a.m. 1201 Pennsylvania Ave. NW — Hudson Institute China Center conference: “The Pernicious Impact of China’s Anti-Secession Law,” focusing on “Taiwan’s right to self-determination,” with Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR); former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Hudson fellow; Robert Tsao, founder of United Microelectronics Corporation; and Vincent Chao, former director, Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the U.S. Political Division https://www.hudson.org/events/pernicious-impact-chinas-anti-secession-law

10 a.m. 192 Dirksen — Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee hearing: “A Review of Select Department of Defense Acquisition Programs,” with testimony from William LaPlante, undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment; Douglas Bush, assistant secretary of the Army for acquisition, logistics, and technology; Nickolas Guertin, assistant secretary of the Navy for research, development, and acquisition; and Andrew Hunter, assistant secretary of the Air Force for acquisition, technology and logistics http://appropriations.senate.gov

10 a.m. 138 Dirksen — Senate Appropriations Energy and Water Development Subcommittee hearing: “A Review of the 2025 Budget Request for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Bureau of Reclamation,” with testimony from Michael Connor, assistant secretary of the Army for civil works, and Lt. Gen. Scott Spellmon, chief of engineers for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers http://appropriations.senate.gov

10 a.m. 419 Dirksen — Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing: “The Future of Arms Control and Deterrence,” with testimony from Bonnie Jenkins, undersecretary of state for arms control and international security http://foreign.senate.gov

10 a.m. 608 Dirksen — Senate Budget Committee hearing: “Budgeting for the Storm: Climate Change and the Costs to National Security,” with testimony from retired Vice Adm. Dennis McGinn, former assistant secretary of the Navy for energy, installations, and environment; Erin Sikorsky, director, Center for Climate and Security and the International Military Council on Climate and Security; and Rick Dwyer, executive director, Hampton Roads Military and Federal Facilities Alliance http://budget.senate.gov

10 a.m. 2167 Rayburn — House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing: “Reviewing and Examining the Francis Scott Key Bridge Federal Response,” with testimony from Vice Adm. Peter Gautier, deputy commandant for operations, Coast Guard; Maj. Gen. William “Butch” Graham, deputy commanding general for civil and emergency operations, Army Corps of Engineers; Shailen Bhatt, administrator of the Federal Highway Administration; and Jennifer Homendy, chairwoman of the National Transportation Safety Board http://transportation.house.gov

11 a.m. 1763 N St. NW — Middle East Institute book discussion: “Battle Ground: Ten Conflicts that Explain the New Middle East,” with author Christopher Phillips, professor of international relations at Queen Mary University of London https://www.mei.edu/events/book-talk-battle-ground-ten-conflicts

1 p.m. — U.S. Navy Memorial virtual discussion with Vice Adm. Richard John Cheeseman, deputy chief of naval operations for manpower, personnel, training, and education and chief of naval personnel, Navy, part of the “SITREP” series. https://navymemorial.swoogo.com/cheeseman_sitrep/5683942

2:30 p.m. 216 Hart — Senate Intelligence Committee hearing: “Update on Foreign Threats to 2024 Elections,” with testimony from Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines; Jen Easterly, director, Homeland Security Department’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency; and Larissa Knapp, executive assistant director for the FBI’s National Security Branch http://intelligence.senate.gov

4 p.m. 232-A Russell — Senate Armed Services Airland Subcommittee hearing: “Army Modernization in Review of the Defense Authorization Request for FY2025 and the Future Years Defense Program,” with testimony from Douglas Bush, assistant secretary of the Army for acquisition, logistics, and technology; Army Gen. James Rainey, commanding general of the U.S. Army Futures Command; and Army Lt. Gen. Karl Gingrich, deputy chief of staff (G-8) http://www.armed-services.senate.gov

4:30 p.m. 1201 Pennsylvania Ave. NW — Hudson Institute discussion: “Flipping the Cube: Transforming the Defense Budget Structure,” with former Pentagon Director of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation Jamie Morin, vice president of Defense Strategic Space, Aerospace Corporation, and former Deputy Defense Secretary David Norquist, president and CEO of the National Defense Industrial Association https://www.hudson.org/events/flipping-cube

THURSDAY | MAY 16

9:30 a.m. 216 Hart — Senate Armed Services Committee hearing: “The Posture of the Department of the Navy in review of the Defense Authorization Request for FY2025 and the Future Years Defense Program,” with testimony from Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro; Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Lisa Franchetti; and Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Eric Smith http://www.armed-services.senate.gov

9:30 a.m. — Henry Stimson Center virtual discussion: “Connecting the Atlantic and Indo-Pacific: Northeast Asia’s Growing Cooperation with NATO,” with former European Union Ambassador to South Korea Michael Reiterer, professor, Brussels School of Governance Center for Security, Diplomacy, and Strategy; Bo Ram Kwon, Korea Institute for Defense Analyses associate research fellow; Yuki Tatsumi, director, Stimson Center’s Japan Program; and Jenny Town, director, Stimson Center’s 38 North and Korea Program https://www.stimson.org/event/connecting-the-atlantic-and-indo-pacific

10 a.m. — Center for a New American Security virtual discussion: “One Year In: Defense Innovation Unit 3.0 and the Path Forward,” with Douglas Beck, director, Defense Innovation Unit https://www.cnas.org/events/virtual-event-one-year-in-diu-3-0

2 p.m. 310 Cannon — House Homeland Security Oversight, Investigations, and Accountability Subcommittee hearing: “Security Risk: The Unprecedented Surge in Chinese Illegal Immigration" http://homeland.house.gov

2 p.m — Government Executive Media Group virtual discussion: “The role of intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance in modern conflict, how the Air Force is training ISR operators, and how emerging tech is improving operations,” with Air Force Lt. Gen. Leah Lauderback, deputy chief of staff for intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, and cyber effects operations, and Dave Gold, Americas field chief technology officer at SentinelOne https://events.defenseone.com/defense-one-service-branch-spotlight-air-force

2 p.m. 2212 Rayburn — Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe hearing: “Closing the Skies, Liberating Ukraine,” with Michael Ryan, former deputy assistant secretary of defense; former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine John Herbst, senior director, Atlantic Council; and Nataliya Bugayova, nonresident fellow, Institute for the Study of War https://events.defenseone.com/defense-one-service-branch-spotlight-air-force/

 3 p.m. 1789 Massachusetts Ave. NW — American Enterprise Institute in-person and virtual discussion: "No Invasion Necessary: A Discussion of How China Can Employ a Coercion-Based Strategy to Take Taiwan Without a War," with Dan Blumenthal, senior fellow, American Enterprise Institute; Frederick Kagan, senior fellow, American Enterprise Institute; Kimberly Kagan, president, Institute for the Study of War; and Bonny Lin, director, China Power Project, Center for Strategic and International Studies https://www.aei.org/events/no-invasion-necessary

FRIDAY | MAY 17

10 a.m. — Center for a New American Security virtual discussion: “Developing Drone and Counter-Drone Capabilities,” with Army Undersecretary Gabe Camarillo org/events/virtual-event-developing-drone-and-counter-drone-capabilities

10 a.m. — Atlantic Council virtual discussion: "The upcoming 2024 NATO Summit and allied strategies to counter renewed Russian retaliation amid Moscow’s ongoing war in Ukraine and efforts to modernize the alliance’s capabilities,” with Army Gen. Christopher Cavoli, commander of the U.S. European Command and supreme NATO commander; Michael Andersson, head of strategic affairs and international affairs at Saab and board director, Atlantic Council; former Supreme NATO Commander retired Marine Corps Gen. James Jones, executive chairman emeritus of the Atlantic Council; and Andrew Michta, director and senior fellow of the Atlantic Council Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security’s Scowcroft Security Initiative https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/event/road-to-washington-general-christopher-cavoli

12 p.m. 555 13th St. NW — Washington Space Business Roundtable discussion: “Integrating the growing U.S. commercial space sector into our national security space architecture,” with Col. Richard Kniseley, senior material leader, Space Systems Command Commercial Space Office https://www.wsbr.org/events/wsbr-may-luncheon-with-colonel-richard-kniseley

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QUOTE OF THE DAY
"If we need to stand alone, we will stand alone. I have said that if necessary, we will fight with our fingernails."
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in response to President Joe Biden's threat to withhold 2,000-pound bombs if the Israeli campaign against Hamas in Rafah doesn't do more to mitigate civilian casualties
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