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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.
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The Social Networking Draft Directive

September 30, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow As I reported yesterday, a draft of a new Defense Department social network policy that made its way to the Whats HQ in Las Vegas, N.M., will allow troops to Twitter away on Defense networks almost unfettered as long as they follow a few simple rules. The draft directive from ...

Interagency office put in charge of DoD/VA lifetime e-record project

September 30, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Top leadership at the Defense and Veterans Affairs departments have assigned broad responsibilities for development of a lifetime electronic health and benefit record for military personnel and veterans to a relatively new interagency program office that lacks a director, according to an internal document obtained by Nextgov. The new charter ...

Filippi to Run Data Exchange?

September 29, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow I've picked up low to medium strength signals that Debra Filippi, the Defense Department's information sharing executive, has emerged as a likely candidate to run the joint interagency program office in charge of sharing information -- including electronic health information -- between the Defense and the Veterans Affairs Department. Rear ...

From Nextgov.com: Defense to allow troops, family members to use social network sites

September 29, 2009 The Defense Department, which had seen some services ban the use of social networking sites, will allow troops and their families to use the popular online communication tools such as Facebook and Twitter on its unclassified networks, according to a draft memo obtained by Nextgov. Read the full story on ...

Defense to allow troops, family members to use social network sites

September 29, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Defense Department, which had seen some services ban the use of social networking sites, will allow troops and their families to use the popular online communication tools such as Facebook and Twitter on its unclassified networks, according to a draft memo obtained by Nextgov. The memo, written by Deputy ...

Interoperability Deadline Looms

September 28, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Defense and the Veterans Affairs departments are supposed to achieve full interoperability of their electronic health record systems come Wednesday. The meshing of the systems was mandated by the 2008 National Defense Authorization Act. I hear the joint Defense/VA interagency program office is working right up to the deadline. ...

The JTAC Diet

September 25, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Want a really interesting job guaranteed to keep you slim? Army Gen. David Petraeus, chief of the U.S. Central Command, said in a speech at the National Press Club yesterday that he faces a big shortage of joint tactical air controllers who call in air strikes for ground units. JTACs ...

New refueling jets to be fully loaded with high-tech equipment

September 25, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow After three attempts to replace its aging refueling tankers, the Air Force kicked off a new contract on Friday, calling for a fleet of 179 carriers that will have sophisticated Internet-based communications on board. The service's draft request for proposals for the $35 billion tanker program includes 373 requirements, including ...

VA to issue emergency payments to vets for education benefits

September 25, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki authorized on Friday emergency payments of up to $3,000 to student veterans who have not received a payment this semester under the post-9/11 GI bill. Students attending school under the bill are worried that VA will not send them their housing and living allowance ...

The Tip of the 9/11 GI Bill Iceberg

September 24, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Top officials of the Veterans Affairs Department revised the figures they put out yesterday on payments the agency has made to veterans under the post-9/11 GI bill, and said that as of today, only 24,186 vets have received checks -- or roughly 12 percent of the 200,000 claims it expected ...