Monday, September 16, 2019

Oops, We Did It Again

Obviously, a prop-driven simple close air support plane (A-29 and AT-6) can't operate in a high-threat environment. They are meant to operate against insurgents and terrorists. So come on Air Force.

This is not shocking:

U.S. Air Force’s slow fielding of propeller-driven attack planes to support ground troops, one lawmaker raised the possibility of putting the project under Army control.

“My frustration is almost palpable at why it is taking so long to get this platform out to where the warfighters need it,” Rep. Michael Waltz, R-Fla., said Wednesday at a Mitchell Institute event.

The House has already given U.S. Special Operations Command the authority — if not yet the appropriations — to buy such planes. But Waltz said the need is so great that perhaps the Army should also be given such authority.

Over the past 12 years, the Air Force has waffled about whether it wants propeller-driven planes.

My view is that the Air Force only wanted those cheaper prop planes as long as it thought it could pretend to want them as a replacement for the A-10.

But the Air Force was forced to keep the A-10.

And now the Air Force has to figure out how to get rid of a second dedicated close air support plane after talking it up as a cost effective solution to get rid of the A-10.