Man do they hate shit that works

The flyboys are at it again. Belt tightening time has come around, and while the ARMY is reducing their fighting force to save money, the flyboys are using this opportunity to get rid of stuff they feel is not cool enough for them. This is the umpteenth time that the fighter jocks are trying to kill the incredibly effective, but not so cool A-10, and again, they pretend it is to save money:

The U.S. Air Force will retire the Fairchild Republic A-10 Warthog and the Lockheed Martin U-2 intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft, but the service also hopes to invest in new technologies in the fiscal year 2015 budget proposal.

The Pentagon had to make tough choices with an “emphasis on capability over capacity,” Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel told reporters during a briefing at the Pentagon on Feb. 24. “We protected [the Air Force’s] key modernization programs, including the bomber, the Joint Strike Fighter and the new refueling tanker.”

This shit seems to be a persistent problem with these idiots. The A-10 is not cool. It is an ugly fucking aircraft. It’s not super-fast, it is not stealthy, and it is over 40 years old, so the flyboys hate the thing. But it works. The thing can take hits and keep working. It has been upgraded to do the work other far more expensive aircraft can’t do half as well, and it is a cheap plane compared to the new shit the flyboys want. And yet, ever since the first Iraqi war ended, they have been trying to get rid of the platform. Totally stupid, but par for the course with these people. It’s as if they are their own worse enemies.

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  1. TxAg94

    It always occurs to me that the A-10, being old and “antiquated”, may be the only American plane in the air if the time comes that China flips their magic switch. Probably doesn’t help that it’s just so damn AMERICAN. Looks like a bad-ass and performs like one. That’s not what our new, techier Air Force is after.

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  2. TxAg94

    Just like the F-16 was supposed to replace the A-10 until the Gulf War put the smash on that silliness. If I was the Army I would be pissed. The Air Force will NEVER use F-35s or F-22s for close air support. That leaves the Army to fend for itself, I’m afraid.

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  3. Seattle Outcast

    I’ve never understood the USAF brass bitter hatred of having to provide air support for ground troops, but unwilling to give up turf on pilots at the same time.

    I’ve literally heard these dips stating that anything with fixed wings “should” be flown by the USAF only. Yet at the same time they have zero willingness to be deployed on carriers.

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    A lot of it is the “FIGHTER PILOT” mentality sleek fast low drag.. knights of the air BS, then a another hunk is $$$ its much easier to get budget money for a golly gee wiss, sleek super high teck fighter ,bomber or missile system , than a old mud mover..

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  5. AlexInCT *

    I’ve never understood the USAF brass bitter hatred of having to provide air support for ground troops, but unwilling to give up turf on pilots at the same time.

    It is a combination of fighting for budget dollars and rigging the dick banging competition. The Air Force already is pissed it loses so much money to the NAVY air wing, and it is damned if it will let the ARMY suck a big chunk of cash the fly boys want to spend on other things.

    The other is just about people with starts on their shoulders wanting to lord it over other people with stars on their shoulders in a different uniform.

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  6. Jimmigration

    From personal experience I can say that the A-10 is antiquated for the mission types that I participated in. Reality is that everything the A-10 is good at the Apache (I know it is a helicopter) is better at. Maybe cost wise the A-10 might come out on top to operate but I don’t know the numbers on that issue to bean count. As long as air dominance is established (and we currently have a two to three generation leap on the closest peer competitor) low altitude air support is much better served by the Apache. I also see drones eating up some of that role as well. Hell drones might even take up artillery support rolls. All my buddies and myself preferred Apaches to everything else when our boots hit the ground. The platform also provided better surveillance and little know role is one of the best sniper suppressors around.

    Maybe in a future conflict a low tech (relatively) low altitude air support platform might have increased value. However, it is much easier, to my understanding to industrially ramp up a production of a low tech product vs. a high tech one, so that is another consideration.

    So when it comes to the A-10 I think the Air Force made the right decision. Maybe they did it for the wrong reasons, but that’s another issue.

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