It was awarded to GDIT in 2017 for $498m, with the cloud service run from DoD data centers. GDIT has since added multiple partners, including Oracle, Cisco Systems, Intel, Red Hat, and VMWare.

But the agreement with AWS is the biggest step towards a hybrid cloud yet.

“Through this collaboration between AWS and GDIT, DoD customers can access leading cloud services from AWS in areas such as compute, storage, database, networking, analytics, machine learning, migration, security, and more,” said Dave Levy, VP of US Government, Nonprofit and Healthcare at AWS.

“We look forward to continuing to support the department’s modernization efforts and the mission-critical needs of our nation’s warfighters.”

Both GDIT cloud partnerships come as Microsoft and Amazon fight over an even larger contract – the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure program, a 10-year deal to provide most of the military’s compute needs, for as much as $10bn.

After a lengthy and contentious process, JEDI was awarded to Microsoft in October 2019. However, work has yet to begin due to an ongoing legal challenge by AWS.

Among other complaints, the company alleges it was blocked from winning the deal due to then-President Trump’s dislike of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, owner of The Washington Post. Should the court decide to review that challenge, it could require lengthy depositions of ex-White House staff and the former President, which could delay JEDI further.

This, the DoD claimed, could cause it to scrap JEDI entirely.