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Bob Brewin

Editor at Large Bob Brewin joined Government Executive in April 2007, bringing with him more than 20 years of experience as a journalist focusing on defense issues and technology. Bob covers the world of defense and information technology for Nextgov, and is the author of the “What’s Brewin” blog.
Results 101-110 of 2899

Are VA Claims Accurate 90 Percent or 45 Percent of the Time?

December 11, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Allison Hickey, the Veterans Affairs Department’s underscretary for benefits, told a hearing of the Senate VA Committee that the Veterans Benefits Administration now processes claims with an accuracy rate of 90 percent, up 7 percent from 2011, an assertion repeatedly challenged by Ranking Member Richard Burr, R-N.C. Burr said the ...

VA Offers Conflicting Accounts of Claims System's 'Spontaneous' Shutdowns

December 11, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow “Spontaneous” shutdowns and other alleged glitches have not plagued the Veterans Affairs Department’s paperless claims processing system for close to a year, a VA executive told Senators Wednesday, undercutting testimony an official from department’s inspector general’s office gave lawmakers last week. Such complaints are “dated,” Allison Hickey, VA’s undersecretary for ...

Flying These Planes Cost $2 Million an Hour

December 10, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In 2008, the Defense Department spent $486 million to buy twenty G222 (C-27A) twin turboprop aircraft from Alenia North America. The planes were for the Afghanistan Air Force, which flew a grand total of only 234 hours – at a cost of slightly more than $2 million an hour – ...

U.S. Considers Russian Request to Install Satellite Monitoring Stations

December 10, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Obama administration continues to review Russian proposals to install up to six monitoring stations on U.S. territory for its satellite navigation system, despite strong opposition in Congress. In May 2012, Russia made a formal request to install base stations in the United States to monitor its Global Navigation Satellite ...

Eight Tech Giants Urge Obama and Congress to Rein In NSA

December 9, 2013 Eight of the largest U.S. technology and social media companies posted an “an open letter to Washington” on Monday asking President Obama and Congress to rein in massive electronic surveillance efforts by the National Security Agency. Referring to the continuing disclosures by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden of widespread surveillance, ...

NSA Also Spies on Trolls, Orcs and Elves

December 9, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In its effort to gather “haystacks” of data to detect terrorist “needles,” the National Security Agency has infiltrated online games populated by mythical creatures, The New York Times reported. The agency has its folks join in the games played by millions of people worldwide under disguise, the Times said. This ...

Eight Tech Giants Urge Obama and Congress to Curb NSA

December 9, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow This story has been updated with background and details. Eight of the largest U.S. technology and social media companies posted an “an open letter to Washington” on Monday asking President Obama and Congress to rein in massive electronic surveillance efforts by the National Security Agency. Referring to the continuing disclosures ...

For Some of Us, Recovery From War Is Its Own Hell

December 5, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow There’s an interesting debate going on in the comments section of the article I wrote Tuesday on Vet Courts, and I’m going to butt in. Vet Courts were developed to provide rehabilitation instead of retribution for vets who have run afoul of the law, in many cases due to drug ...

VA Paperless Claims System ‘Spontaneously’ Shuts Down

December 5, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Veterans Affairs Department’s $491 million paperless claims processing system frustrates examiners with “spontaneous system shutdowns,” Sondra McCauley, VA deputy assistant inspector general for audits and evaluations, told a hearing of the House VA Committee. McCauley said 25 staffers in the in the Houston, Newark and Milwaukee regional offices of ...

Chinese Air Defense Zone Won’t Inhibit Navy’s New Surveillance Planes

December 4, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow An air defense zone China recently declared in the East China Sea will not inhibit the operations of two high-tech maritime surveillance aircraft the U.S. Navy deployed to Okinawa, Japan earlier this week, a spokesman indicated. Declining to comment on specific missions, Jon Nylander, a spokesman for U.S. Naval Forces ...