Know your rights: DOHA. Contributor and barrister Sean Bigley advises, “If you are a federal contractor and ever have the misfortune of encountering security clearance problems, chances are high that you’ll wind-up pleading your case before the Defense Office of Hearings and Appeals (‘DOHA’). The primary exceptions to this rule are contractors working for intelligence agencies or the Department of Energy. Those agencies adjudicate cases internally. No matter which agency is handling your case, representing yourself – as I’ve previously discussed – is often a quick ticket to the unemployment line. . . .”

Tech in Stuttgart. Contributor Jennifer Cary offers, “If you’re working for the military in Stuttgart, it’s likely that your home base will be U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart. The garrison is home to major power players like the United States European Command, United States Africa Command and Defense Information Systems Agency Europe Field Command. . . . Technology jobs are currently in demand with openings for a network engineer, SharePoint developer, and program control specialist. But it’s also possible to find other contracting positions like this senior counter intelligence analyst slot with L-3 Communications.”


Defense Media Activity’s Jim Garamone reports, “The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff cannot predict exactly where the next threat to the United States and its interests may come from, but he knows it will happen faster than in the past and the U.S. military must be prepared. The National Military Strategy released [Wednesday] by Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey provides the blueprint for how the military will use its forces to protect and advance U.S. national and security interests.”

Defense One’s Marcus Weisgerber reports, “The U.S. military needs to reorganize itself and prepare for war that has no end in sight with militant groups like the Islamic State and nations that use proxies to fight on their behalf, America’s top general warned Wednesday. In what is likely his last significant strategy direction before retiring this summer, Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at the Pentagon that ‘global disorder has trended upward while some of our comparative advantages have begun to erode,’ since 2011, the last update to the National Military Strategy.”

Reuters reports, “China has almost finished building a 3,000-meter-long (10,000-foot) airstrip on one of its artificial islands in the disputed Spratly archipelago of the South China Sea, new satellite photographs of the area show. A U.S. military commander had told Reuters in May that the airstrip on Fiery Cross Reef could be operational by year-end, although the June 28 images suggest that could now be sooner. The airstrip will be long enough to accommodate most Chinese military aircraft, security experts have said, giving Beijing greater reach into the heart of maritime Southeast Asia . . . .”

AP’s Rami Musa reports, “Today, Libya is bitterly divided between an elected parliament and government that are cornered in the country’s east, with little power on the ground, and an Islamist militia-backed government in the west. Hundreds of militias are aligned with either side or on their own, battling for power and turf. The U.N.-backed talks between rival factions have not yet managed to strike a power-sharing deal. Meanwhile, Libya’s Islamic State affiliate is fighting on different fronts, losing ground in its eastern stronghold of Darna while expanding along the country’s central northern coastline.”


Wired’s Kim Zetter reports, “Amnesty International recently learned that the spy agency had intercepted, stored and accessed its communications during an unspecified period, according to an email the human rights group received. The email, from the UK’s Investigatory Powers Tribunal, revealed that the group had been one of two NGO’s targeted by the GCHQ. The other was the Legal Resources Centre in South Africa. The revelation comes after Amnesty International and nine other organizations filed a legal challenge against the GCHQ under suspicion that they had been spied upon.”

PC World’s Jeremy Kirk reports, “A Drug Enforcement Administration agent intimately involved in the Silk Road investigation admitted on Wednesday he secretly accepted bitcoins from the underground website’s operator and illegally took other funds. Carl Mark Force IV, who was a DEA agent for 15 years, pleaded guilty to money laundering, obstruction of justice and extortion under color of official right, according to the plea agreement, filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. Force could face up to 20 years in prison on each of the counts.”

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Ed Ledford enjoys the most challenging, complex, and high stakes communications requirements. His portfolio includes everything from policy and strategy to poetry. A native of Asheville, N.C., and retired Army Aviator, Ed’s currently writing speeches in D.C. and working other writing projects from his office in Rockville, MD. He loves baseball and enjoys hiking, camping, and exploring anything. Follow Ed on Twitter @ECLedford.