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Head of Marine Aviation: without more money we'll stop flying

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posted on Feb, 6 2017 @ 09:00 PM
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a reply to: redmage

Except that, again, our military is old as hell. They're actually talking about retiring equipment to be able to get parts to keep other equipment going.




posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 05:14 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Not really.

Some of our publicly acknowledged military assets are "old as hell", and even some of our black projects are starting to age, but the military has more than enough funding to maintain vital defenses against any nation on earth. It's simply a matter of re-prioritizing what they consider vital, and directing the funding there.

Retiring some of our publicly acknowledged assets might be a good idea if they wish to keep directing funding elsewhere.

edit on 2/7/17 by redmage because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 05:47 AM
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a reply to: redmage

That is what we have to do in the private sector.

The days of the taxpayer being an endless ATM need to be behind us. If we can't afford the military we have, then we can either figure out how we can afford it, or we downsize until we can afford it.

The department leaders have a budget. If they cannot make a plan to operate within their budgets, they need replacing. But spending all your budgeted cash, then whining to the press and making politics out of your failure just is not appropriate.

When you are chosen to lead, then you have to actually lead. Not throw your hands up and blame fate for screwing you over.



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 05:49 AM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

The problem is that our military is so old and maintenance intensive that our current funding levels don't keep up anymore.


Sounds like a Roman problem......



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 05:56 AM
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Well there's always Sim training. We always had funding issues. Last time was a safety stand down when there were no accidents. Long weekends help too, haha.



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 06:39 AM
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a reply to: redmage

Funding isn't as simple as "we spent $625B last year". Over half of that goes to base upkeep and maintenance. There is a lot to fund, not all of it goes to assets.

And it's far more than "some of our publicly acknowledged assets". It's most of our assets.



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 06:40 AM
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a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

Steps are being taken to limit risk during development, and are working. But it doesn't change overnight.



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 06:54 AM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58

Funding isn't as simple as "we spent $625B last year". Over half of that goes to base upkeep and maintenance. There is a lot to fund, not all of it goes to assets.


Perhaps our military asset list (including bases) has become a bit bloated, and it's time to trim back a few.


originally posted by: [post=21865577]
And it's far more than "some of our publicly acknowledged assets". It's most of our assets.


The "most" argument doesn't hold much water with me either.

A few F22s backed by some F35s, drones, satellites, ect. can do the same job as huge numbers of outdated and aging platforms. Tech has advanced to the point that we don't need the same vast numbers of assets to do the same job. "Most" doesn't mean much when we already have "less doing more".
edit on 2/7/17 by redmage because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 07:13 AM
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a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan


As it stands the USAF squadrons must spent every single penny of their budget no matter what...

Anybody that manages to save some money loses that money out of the following years budget.

Sounds good until you put it into practice... so SOP now is to spend every penny.

========================

As for the aging aircraft... I will give a list of what I have worked on.

B-52H, youngest one in the fleet 1961, the plane was designed for 5000 flight hours when I left it in 2001 the lowest flight hour jet in the fleet at that time had 20,000 hours on it.

B-1B- first model came out in 1969 I believe, ones I worked on were early '80s... the plane is a first rate resource hog/pig to keep flying.

AWACS- late '70s... while the 707 is a very good platform, these things have been road hard and put away wet for decades... using some very ancient engines.

KC-135- mid 1950's were the models I was on...

I point this out to those saying our fleet is not very old, I think we can agree each airframe I was on was fairly vital to a war effort.

All except the 135 (these were reserve planes so a little less labor intensive) were maintenance hogs...



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 07:30 AM
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a reply to: Irishhaf

I have no issue with spending what is budgeted.

I DO have issue with variances to budget that are not approved by the funding entity. I do it for a living. Im a bean counter.



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 07:54 AM
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Not to be a &$^% but do we need Marine Aviators (not talking about CAS, we'll always love Marine CAS).

If Marines are flying the same aircraft and missions as the Air Farce and the Navy, is it anything other than a budget sink?

There was a time when the Army took ground, the Marines defended ground, the Air Farce protected the Skies, and the Navy got us all there. Times change.

Now, every branch has Aviation (three capable of gaining air superiority). Is this because aviation is different among the branches, the US needs more crews than the AF can provide, or because expensive equipment allows for a bloated budget?

Perhaps the American military could use honest reflection and auditing to allow the branches to get back to doing what they are supposed to be doing. Winning wars. I am sure the halls of the Pentagon seem like a battlefield at times, and Congressional budget meetings are probably referred to as "the trenches" by the male and female officers that attend them. However, the troops need to have clear and concise objectives. Meaningful strategies for winning engagements rather than wasting money on redundant systems to justify budgets and duty positions for officers.

How many Trillions did we spend on the newest aircraft only to have it sold (both aircraft and plans) to foreign countries? How many Billions did we spend on the new SPA (Artillery) only to have the military decide "the old one is good enough if we upgrade it". The R&D budget needs to be brought into realistic focus. Currently it is nothing more than a tax dollar trough for big firms. Meanwhile, soldiers with 15 years of service and two kids qualify for public assistance based on salary.

TL;DR - If the "big shinnies" are too expensive to operate, why does every branch have to have them?
edit on 7-2-2017 by 200Plus because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 12:08 PM
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a reply to: redmage

F-22s and F-35s aren't doing a damn thing without tankers. Our KC-135s are 60 years old.

UAVs aren't doing anything without a strike capability. A Predator isn't going into a hostile environment without something knocking the defenses completely out. That's more than 187 F-22s and (currently) two squadrons of F-35s are doing. That means bombers. We have 20 B-2s that are pushing 20+ years old.

Currently the ONLY new platforms we have capable of fighting a peer or near peer war, on Day One, are 187 F-22s, less than 100 F-35s, and 20 B-2s. Everything else in the inventory is 30 years old, or older. Of the three mentioned, only the fighters are less than 20, and both are extremely limited in what they can do by themselves.

Even if we cut back on the bases we have, which we've already cut back on over the years, it will still take 15 years to see a new platform operational.



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 12:42 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: redmage

F-22s and F-35s aren't doing a damn thing without tankers. Our KC-135s are 60 years old.


Yup, and the first 18 combat-ready KC-46s are scheduled to be delivered to the U.S. Air Force next year, so the older of our KC-135s can start being retired, or scrapped for salvageable parts to keep the newer ones functional for just a little bit longer until delivery begins.

I find it odd that you would make such an argument because I'm pretty sure you're fully aware that the KC-46s are right around the corner.


originally posted by: Zaphod58
UAVs aren't doing anything without a strike capability. A Predator isn't going into a hostile environment without something knocking the defenses completely out. That's more than 187 F-22s and (currently) two squadrons of F-35s are doing. That means bombers. We have 20 B-2s that are pushing 20+ years old.


Please, between Cruise Missiles, B-2s, F22s, and F35s no country that we would reasonably attack could stop us demolishing their AA defenses & radars, and that's not even delving into our more than capable "black" options.


originally posted by: Zaphod58
Currently the ONLY new platforms we have capable of fighting a peer or near peer war, on Day One, are 187 F-22s, less than 100 F-35s, and 20 B-2s.


When it comes to the U.S., there's no such thing as a "peer or near peer war". M.A.D. ended such notions long ago.

"Peer or near peer war" = nuclear holocaust (in which case no one wins).


originally posted by: Zaphod58
Everything else in the inventory is 30 years old, or older. Of the three mentioned, only the fighters are less than 20, and both are extremely limited in what they can do by themselves.


You know better than that. Maybe everything else in the public domain inventory is 30+, but not simply "everything else".

I've gotta say, it certainly feels strange seeing you attempt to downplay the immense capabilities of the F-22, F-35, and B-2.
edit on 2/7/17 by redmage because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 03:22 PM
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By the way, here is an update related to those capabilities...Link



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 03:25 PM
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Well they could take all of the money that they are spending on sexual harassment and diversity training and dump it in OPTAR.



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 04:58 PM
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a reply to: redmage

Being delivered doesn't mean anything other than the Air Force crews are flying them. They will get the first 18 by March of 2018, but don't have an IOC date, which qualifies them for minimal operations. FOC won't be until at least the mid 2020s. The KC-135 will have to fly at LEAST that long, and that's if they don't find more problems as they go on. They haven't even certified the drogue pods yet, and won't until at least this summer, at the earliest.

Great that you have so much faith in them, but if we're facing, say China, even with their older aircraft, there's only so much fewer than 300 operational fighters, with a limited number of missiles can do. And they're not invincible. Add in the distances they'd have to fly, and there are more problems. And cruise missiles, for the most part, are fairly vulnerable to anti air.

It's called "realism". The number of aircraft you're talking about can only be in so many places at one time. And those amazing capabilities rely on 60 year old aircraft to get to the battlefield. Add in aircraft in maintenance, and the low mission capable rate of the B-2 and even F-22 at times, and you have even fewer. I have great faith in our military, but asking them to fight with one hand tied behind their back is a piss poor way to fight a war.



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 05:22 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

If the chinese can get their engine game together and start spitting out J-20's in mass I wonder what kind of attrition rate we would be able to survive? My bet is that we won't be able to carry enough of a loadout to deal with them under that scenario, maybe with an arsenal ship or loyal guardian you could level the playing field. Our tech may be superior but quantity has it's own quality at some point.
edit on 7-2-2017 by Bfirez because: sp



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 06:53 PM
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a reply to: Bfirez

That's one of the things I'm talking about. China has thousands of older fighters they can throw away. If they throw them at us first, the F-22s are going to get so worn out dealing with them we're going to have fewer available. The same with the F-35s.

We have one F-35A combat coded squadron, with fewer than 30 aircraft. The Marines currently have 2 I believe, with VMFA-121 having just forward deployed to Japan. That's less than 100 combat coded aircraft right now. That's less than 300 fifth generation fighters.

I love the F-22 and F-35. They're amazing aircraft. They're not God weapons. They change the battlefield dynamic immensely, but they can be beat. And every one we lose in a war is that much less combat power we have. Our 4th Gen fleet just isn't going to make up for losing even a few of them.



posted on Feb, 7 2017 @ 10:22 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

It definitely shows how canceling the raptor early really put us in quite the bind. The work was already done on the bird at that point and canceling or cutting back the F35 at this point would really screw us in a similiar way. Let's hope the line keeps rolling and we see PCA & 6 Gen sooner rather than later.



posted on Feb, 10 2017 @ 08:19 PM
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Interesting development today. The third unit scheduled to transition to the F-35B was VMA-311. Instead the Marines have shaken things up and will transition VMFA-122. VMA-311 is an AV-8B unit, where VMFA-211 is a Hornet unit. This gets their aircraft out of play, while leaving the Harriers, which are in better shape, in service.




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