posted on Jun, 2 2006 @ 08:33 PM
I don't think that once US withdraws much of it's forces from Iraq, that Russia and China will have any problem selling to the Iraqis. Obviously
they will not sell their really good stuff for fear of Iraqis allowing US access to them. However, the aforementioned countries would love to regain
influence in Iraq. Not to mention, dollars.
I'd even suggest use of an "elite" squadron or two of Fulcrums or even Flankers. Heaven knows that Flanker is totally invincible!!!
I'd still say they need defensive capability to control their own airspace. They still have aircrews and groundgrunts who worked on Sovblok AC. Why
throw that away spending hundreds of millions introducing new types?
The new IAF is obviously going to be under a protective umbrella of USAF but I still think that their national pride will be better served in flying
non-US types. The national treasury (theirs and ours-US) will be eased by flying low maintenance, low-cost airframes.
F-35's will NOT be going to Iraq for the same reasons the Russians/Chinese won't sell their top AC. Besides, cheaper airframes are easier replaced
when some jihadist drives a suicide fuel bowser into them. A few F-35's would make a nice target!
General Chuck Horner insists that Iraqis had good pilots. Put 'em in some non-robot training, let 'em straddle some decent platform.
Build back their infrastructure. Give 'em some patrol and recce capability, then some cargo-hauling capability, then some attack (fixed AND rotary
wing), then some fighter. Teach them how to keep all that flying and IMHO they will do just fine.