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The Bangladesh and United States are set to sign two important bilateral defence agreements including:

  • General Security Of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA)
  • Acquisition and Cross Servicing Agreement (ACSA)

GSOMIA

The GSOMIA is a foundational government-to-government bilateral agreement that will permit greater collaboration and sharing of classified military information in the form of intelligence and classified information US defence equipment.

GSOMIA is a reciprocal, legally-binding agreement that ensures governments understand and commit to protect classified military information at an equivalent level of security.

“It does not obligate or commit governments to share classified information or material, it only ensures equivalent protection of the information if shared,” the official said.

Washington has GSOMIA agreements with 76 partners across the globe, including several countries in South Asia.

GSOMIA serves to strengthen cooperation to advance shared interests of trusted partners.  As the US-Bangladesh relationship continues to grow, GSOMIA is essential to enabling the cooperation we both seek.

“For Foreign Military Sales (FMS) or GSOMIA, our security authorities would work closely with your security authorities to develop a security plan and standard operating procedures to implement required security measures.”

ACSA

The purpose of the ACSA is to allow the US and partner nation forces to procure and pay for common types of logistical support, supplies, and services in a way that simplifies cooperation.

“ACSA agreements do not in any way commit a partner nation to military action nor do they authorise the stationing of ships, aircraft, or military personnel in foreign countries.”

“They only serve to simplify the procurement and payment of logistic support, supplies, and services between partner forces,” said the official.

The United States has an ACSA agreement with over 100 countries, including India and Sri Lanka.

As a mutual logistics support agreement, for example, an ACSA could facilitate the transfer of fuel from the Bangladesh military to visiting US naval ships participating in the annual Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) exercise.

“It could also improve the United States’ ability to respond to any potential humanitarian or natural disasters involving Bangladesh and facilitate the transfer of fuel from the US military to Bangladesh naval ships operating outside of their normal areas; thereby eliminating the need to contract with commercial vendors,” the official said to cite an example.

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Bangladesh should take the opportunity to acquire a good number of military surplus hardware from the US. In this regard the Bangladesh Navy could benefit most from warships the Americans are decommissioning much earlier than their service life expediencies.

US Navy proposes decommissioning first 4 LCS more than a decade early

ELMER, N.J. — The U.S. Navy has put forward a proposal to decommission the first four littoral combat ships in 2021 as part of a cost-savings measure, according to a memorandum from the White House’s Office of Management and Budget to the Defense Department.

The memo obtained by Defense News outlines plans to decommission the littoral combat ships Freedom, Independence, Fort Worth and Coronado, part of an overall plan to shrink the size of the force to deal with a flat budget. The ships all have between 12 and 17 years of planned hull life remaining.

The memo also outlines plans to decommission three dock landing ships — Whidbey Island, Germantown and Gunston Hall — between eight and 14 years early, as well as accelerating the decommissioning of four cruisers.

In the same document, the Department of Defense outlined plans to slash construction of Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, cutting five out of 12 of the Burkes planned over the five-year Future Years Defense Program.

The memo amounts to a back-and-forth between the DoD and OMB on areas of disagreement inside the Pentagon’s 2021 budget request, which has yet to be finalized. Bloomberg News and Breaking Defense previously reported on aspects of the memo.

The plan, which an administration source told Defense News was driven by the Office of the Secretary of Defense, was not greeted warmly by OMB, which directed the DoD to come back with a plan that would get the Navy to 355 ships as per the original program.

The Pentagon’s plan shrinks the size of the fleet from today’s fleet of 293 ships to 287 ships. The 355-ship goal was also made national policy in the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act.

But the plan to decommission the first four LCS will upset the Navy’s plan to use them as test ships for the still-to-be-fielded mission modules, a key part of the 2016 reorganization of the program prompted by a string of major casualties caused by system failures and operator errors.

The Navy upended the program’s signature modularity, a concept that would have seen crews attached to specific mission modules such as anti-surface warfare, anti-submarine warfare or mine warfare, and could be switched out rapidly pierside depending on the mission. But the reorganization assigned each ship a permanent mission module, with the crews training and testing on the first four LCS.

Decommissioning the ships will send the Navy back to the drawing board on how to get the new modules tested.

Bryan McGrath, a retired destroyer captain and analyst with defense consultancy The Ferrybridge Group, said the plan to reduce the size of the fleet is a sign that the Defense Department isn’t willing to put the resources required toward growing the fleet.

“If what you are reporting is true, this is a sign of the tension between the grand desires for a much larger fleet and the modest resources being applied to the problem,” McGrath said. “There simply is no way to grow the fleet as it is currently architected while maintaining the current fleet at a high state of readiness with the given resources."

McGrath said if 355 is still the goal, the Pentagon has to either dramatically restructure the fleet to switch out large surface combatants such as cruisers and destroyers with smaller, less expensive ships, or it has to change what’s counted as a ship — both moves that have been signaled by the Navy in recent years.

“This is why it’s so hard to grow a Navy,” McGrath said. “You have to decide it’s a national priority, you have to devote a lot of resources and you have to do it over a period of years. None of that has happened.”

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The Whidbey Island-class is an attractive propositon for the Bangladesh Navy. Introduced to fleet service in 1985, this class of ship features a large well deck for the transport of United States Marine Corps (USMC) vehicles and a large flight deck for the landing of helicopters or V-22 Ospreys. The well deck was designed to hold four LCAC hovercraft, five if the vehicle ramp is raised, for landing Marines. Recent deployments have instead filled the well deck with a combination of LCU(s), AAVs, Tanks, LARCs and other USMC vehicles and gear. The Whidbey Island class of ship also uniquely benefits from multiple cranes and a shallow draft that further make it ideal for participating in amphibious operations.

By 2014 all ships of the class underwent upgrades to extend service life to 44 years. Major elements of the upgrade package include diesel engine improvements, fuel and maintenance savings systems, engineering control systems, increased air conditioning and chill water capacity, and replacement of air compressors. The ships also replaced steam systems with all-electric functionality that will decrease maintenance effort and expense.

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The AH-64E should be summed up as a confidence building measure of sorts to improve defence ties between the two new friends.

If the program is executed successfully BAF should request sale of C-17 and P-8 aircraft to shore up transport and ASW capabilities.

Navy purchases are easier had from UK or even Italy.

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8 hours ago, TigerShark said:

The AH-64E should be summed up as a confidence building measure of sorts to improve defence ties between the two new friends.

If the program is executed successfully BAF should request sale of C-17 and P-8 aircraft to shore up transport and ASW capabilities.

Navy purchases are easier had from UK or even Italy.

p-8 can be a possibility as the USN even let BAF pilots fly them during an exercise. As for the c-17, we have no other choice but to request surplus C-17s from current users. The production line is already closed and India was the last recipient.

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With Bernie Sanders very likely to be the next POTUS, tonnes of quality hardware will become up for grabs.

The Army, Navy should takeover BAF's procurement process through AFD so that they do not bungle the opportunity.

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11 minutes ago, Alim said:

With Bernie Sanders very likely to be the next POTUS, tonnes of quality hardware will become up for grabs.

The Army, Navy should takeover BAF's procurement process through AFD so that they do not bungle the opportunity.

Doubt Bernice can clear the primaries, Biden despite taking some losses is still favorite. 

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9 minutes ago, ssud11 said:

Doubt Bernice can clear the primaries, Biden despite taking some losses is still favorite. 

Biden is running on default support from low information, older voters which is eroding fast as people are starting to pay attention.

Bernie is leading the opening cacuses in Iowa and New Hampshire and also in California which has the highest number of delgates. He is the only candidate with honest proposals and a proven track record. His support will snowball from the early cacuses.

Anyway, on topic: Sanders will roll back troops from around the world and shut most of the 900 US bases.

That's a lot of hardware up for grabs.

BAF has a great opportunity to undo the damage it has inflicted upon itself in the last couple of decades.

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6 minutes ago, TigerShark said:

BAF team is competent nowadays because of the Planning wing.

Their recent purchases have been commendable.

- Leonardo MPDR

- Leonardo RAT-31DL ASR

- AW139 MSAR helicopters

- Mi-171Sh helicopters

C-130J transporters.

Fantastic purchases no doubt but they have "underperformed" ( and I take no pleasure in saying this) where it matters - procuring fighter jets.

The govt regimes in charge since 2007 have been highly supportive of military procurement and BA and BN have made full use of the support as their transformation in fighting capabilities has been phenomenal.

BAF on the other hand has lost edge due to retirement of many experienced pilots and lack of exposure to modern fighters for decades while the world has advanced fast.

We need to introduce fighter jets in large numbers ASAP to control the damage and the US can help us with that.

One way forward for BAF to upskill pilots is to intially procure a disproportionately large number of dual seat OCUs to train up pilots on the go.

No amount of AJT hours can replicate OCU hours.

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5 hours ago, Alim said:

Biden is running on default support from low information, older voters which is eroding fast as people are starting to pay attention.

Bernie is leading the opening cacuses in Iowa and New Hampshire and also in California which has the highest number of delgates. He is the only candidate with honest proposals and a proven track record. His support will snowball from the early cacuses.

Anyway, on topic: Sanders will roll back troops from around the world and shut most of the 900 US bases.

That's a lot of hardware up for grabs.

BAF has a great opportunity to undo the damage it has inflicted upon itself in the last couple of decades.

Very Unlikely.Despite the public statements Bernie will do no such thing. He will consider American interest first. 

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5 hours ago, Alim said:

Fantastic purchases no doubt but they have "underperformed" ( and I take no pleasure in saying this) where it matters - procuring fighter jets.

The govt regimes in charge since 2007 have been highly supportive of military procurement and BA and BN have made full use of the support as their transformation in fighting capabilities has been phenomenal.

BAF on the other hand has lost edge due to retirement of many experienced pilots and lack of exposure to modern fighters for decades while the world has advanced fast.

We need to introduce fighter jets in large numbers ASAP to control the damage and the US can help us with that.

One way forward for BAF to upskill pilots is to intially procure a disproportionately large number of dual seat OCUs to train up pilots on the go.

No amount of AJT hours can replicate OCU hours.

The issue was the 2008 maritime standoff between Bangladesh and Myanmar that led to government paying more attention to military.

 

We can't go too fast in this regard. AF needs well trained pilots and also that we will be getting OCU (Operational Conversion Units) with the delivery of fighters. Moreover, development of doctrine and tactics will only be possible once we get the fighters. Remember, we still lack a comprehensive BVR doctrine. If we get access to meteor then our doctrine will change from current one that is based on Russian and Chinese. I expect 2031-35 period to be the effective period for the conclusion of very sophisticated tactics and doctrine.

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37 minutes ago, Professor Chanakya said:

Very Unlikely.Despite the public statements Bernie will do no such thing. He will consider American interest first. 

I am afraid you are not very familiar with Sanders' track record.

Besides, those bases do not serve "American interests" but corporate interests. If elected, and the odds are high as per polling data, he will be the first POTUS in modern history to not be beholden to corporate interests as he takes no money from them. I suggest reading up on him.

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32 minutes ago, Professor Chanakya said:

The issue was the 2008 maritime standoff between Bangladesh and Myanmar that led to government paying more attention to military.

 

We can't go too fast in this regard. AF needs well trained pilots and also that we will be getting OCU (Operational Conversion Units) with the delivery of fighters. Moreover, development of doctrine and tactics will only be possible once we get the fighters. Remember, we still lack a comprehensive BVR doctrine. If we get access to meteor then our doctrine will change from current one that is based on Russian and Chinese. I expect 2031-35 period to be the effective period for the conclusion of very sophisticated tactics and doctrine.

We have passed the threshold of "too fast" 20 years ago. Signing purchase orders for dozens of fighters this very day would still be very late due to the damage that has already been done to the organisation. Lack of air power has played a significant part in our recent foreign relations blunders.

BAF at present is too weak, with zero BVR capability and only 8 high performance jets, to take the standard route of two OCUs per squadron approach.

A dozen OCUs will be quick damage control and it just might enable us to hold the fort in a conflict 5 years down the line.

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2 minutes ago, Alim said:

I am afraid you are not very familiar with Sanders' track record.

Besides, those bases do not serve "American interests" but corporate interests. If elected, and the odds are high as per polling data, he will be the first POTUS in modern history to not be beholden to corporate interests as he takes no money from them. I suggest reading up on him.

You're making assumptions as to whether I know or not. I teach these issues to people. Anyways I've not taken offense to your statement. It doesn't matter what Sanders says. He will have his hands tied when dealing with this issue. Congress and Senate won't allow him to do a lot of things that he might want to do. There isn't much support for such policies from any major segment of Democratic or Republican Party. American system functions in such a way that Sanders being completely clean from corporate interest won't be able to make major change. He might close 1-2 bases but no major change will come. Trust me. All these bases serve American interest and as such America can't give away its valuable possessions.

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1 minute ago, Alim said:

We have passed the threshold of "too fast" 20 years ago. Signing purchase orders for dozens of fighters this very day would still be very late due to the damage that has already been done to the organisation. Lack of air power has played a significant part in our recent foreign relations blunders.

BAF at present is too weak, with zero BVR capability and only 8 high performance jets, to take the standard route of two OCUs per squadron approach.

A dozen OCUs will be quick damage control and it just might enable us to hold the fort in a conflict 5 years down the line.

Conflict against who ? A war with Bangladesh will be very very bad for Myanmar.

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5 minutes ago, Professor Chanakya said:

You're making assumptions as to whether I know or not. I teach these issues to people. Anyways I've not taken offense to your statement. It doesn't matter what Sanders says. He will have his hands tied when dealing with this issue. Congress and Senate won't allow him to do a lot of things that he might want to do. There isn't much support for such policies from any major segment of Democratic or Republican Party. American system functions in such a way that Sanders being completely clean from corporate interest won't be able to make major change. He might close 1-2 bases but no major change will come. Trust me. All these bases serve American interest and as such America can't give away its valuable possessions.

American presidents whoever they maybe are all slaves to lobbying groups and national interest. I never buy anything they say during the election campaign. 

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1 hour ago, Alim said:

We have passed the threshold of "too fast" 20 years ago. Signing purchase orders for dozens of fighters this very day would still be very late due to the damage that has already been done to the organisation. Lack of air power has played a significant part in our recent foreign relations blunders.

BAF at present is too weak, with zero BVR capability and only 8 high performance jets, to take the standard route of two OCUs per squadron approach.

A dozen OCUs will be quick damage control and it just might enable us to hold the fort in a conflict 5 years down the line.

BAF maybe weak, but there is no way that Myanmar army can even invade Cox's Bazar. 

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On 1/26/2020 at 1:54 PM, Salted Cola said:

American presidents whoever they maybe are all slaves to lobbying groups and national interest. I never buy anything they say during the election campaign. 

Exactly ! that is what I'm trying to say. Even Obama failed to do any such major policy reversals despite having more popularity and despite being more accepted than Sanders. 3 major promises: Geetting out of Iraq and Afghanistan and closing Guantanamo has not materialized so far !

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18 hours ago, Professor Chanakya said:

Exactly ! that is what I'm trying to say. Even Obama failed to do any such major policy reversals despite having more popularity and despite being more accepted than Sanders. 3 major promises: Geetting out of Iraq and Afghanistan and closing Guantanamo has not materialized so far !

I dont think there will be any major shift in policy and I would expect another Trump tenure in coming years so dont bother engaging your brain thinking Sanders has chance. The boost of defense budget by Trump is a good news for Bangladesh , not so a good news that 900 bases will be closed due to a new POTUS in power. 

Also delighted to see we have a stronger ties now and it is preferable to have decommissioned ships from US then some Chinese ! might have Coronavirus on them who knows!  

 

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On 1/29/2020 at 5:24 AM, Legionair said:

I dont think there will be any major shift in policy and I would expect another Trump tenure in coming years so dont bother engaging your brain thinking Sanders has chance. The boost of defense budget by Trump is a good news for Bangladesh , not so a good news that 900 bases will be closed due to a new POTUS in power. 

Also delighted to see we have a stronger ties now and it is preferable to have decommissioned ships from US then some Chinese ! might have Coronavirus on them who knows!  

 

Actually I wasn't and you are right. I was replying to members who thought that Sanders might come and close bases and make 180 turn in US foreign policy.

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