Saturday, January 24, 2015

The old unlovely Warthog. Heck, if the Air Force doesn't want them, give 'em to the Peshmerga.

A-10s Fly Combat Missions Over Syria
“Anyone who is passing information to Congress about A-10 capabilities is committing treason,” Maj. Gen. James Post said recently during a speech at the Air Force’s Weapons and Tactics Conference, according to a post by former airman Tony Carr on the blog John Q. Public.
Heck, if the Air Force doesn't want them, give them to the Peshmerga. Along with Stingers, Javelins and M1A2 tanks. They'll figure out what to do with them in an independent Kurdistan. Screw the ghost of Woodrow Wilson.


Anonymous said...

Been saying for years...Give 'em to the Marines.

Anonymous said...

Why would the Marines or the Army take them when there are other aircraft who do the same mission who will get there faster ( over twice as fast actually) have better systems and sensors and more weapons when they get there, and who dont need the area to be swept of air-air and surface to air threats first?
All CAS weapons employed today are precision weapons dropped using target pods. In two deployments I never saw or heard of a single visual delivery except for strafe. Not one. The A10 was designed for visual pipper and CCIP deliveries Vietnam style. We dont do those any more and believe me the troops wouldnt want us to. A ten meter bomb in those days was excellent with precision laser ordnance or jdam a 2 meter bomb is average.
It is a cool aircraft for sure...but new tech has surpassed it. We have better CAS platforms today, its just a fact. Having said all that, by far the limiting factor in CAS is rules of engagement anyway. You want to help our soldiers and Marines, convince the ground commanders and the politicians they fear to let CAS assets do our jobs.

AJ said...

Of course they want to retire the A-10. They're too cheap, effective, reliable, survivable, and repairable in the field. Palms have been getting greased for some time to replace it with that POS F-35 "multi-role" fighter that doesn't do anything very well.

Anonymous said...

Screw that. Give them to the Marines. They're the ones who specialize in CAS.

To Anon 0949: The A-10 carries the largest payload out of all the aircraft used for CAS and is the most durable.

Allen said...

they want to retire the A-10 because the company that made them no longer exists. and it's hard to get a cushy office job after you retire at a company that no longer exists.

Allen said...

anon 9:49am, you're missing the point. faster isn't better. the A-10 is supposed to loiter near the troops and be there immediately.. not sitting on a runway awaiting a mission.

also, how much does a laser-guided weapon or a JDAM cost? is it more than a used toyota truck? probably. 10-meter accuracy is good enough for bombs..if you need closer, you use the gun.

Anonymous said...

I remember talking with an A-7 pilot about the relative merits of the Warthog vs Corsair II. I mentioned the nice titanium "bathtub" of armor around the A-10 cockpit to protect the pilot from ground fire. The A-7 jock replied that the A-7 flew faster than the A-10 and so didn't NEED the armor. Somehow I never believed that flying faster improved accuracy.

For Anon @9:49 AM,
To which aircraft are you referring with the comment about better CAS? My understanding is that the Warthog's avionics have been upgraded and it can deliver any ordinance in the current inventory. Stand-off armament's may be peachy keen for pile-its but I'm not so sure about for the grunts getting hammered.

Remember the VN era CAS nicknamed the "Spad"? Nobody expected to use a radial-engined behemoth similar to the P-47 (also nicknamed "Warthog", BTW) but I hear they saved a whole lotta lives. Ever hear the phrase "everything old is new again"? How many times did they de-mothball, refurbish and upgrade the New Jersey?

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:49,
These other services want the un-lovely A10 Warthog because it has more Time-Over-Target.
The POS F35 gets there fast, but it flies SOOOO fast and SOOOOO high, it's ineffective as an air cover protection for the grunt on the ground (the basic roles of the Army and Marines - G-D bless my brothers-in-arms).

B Woodman

Anonymous said...

I was anon 949 and was just trying to explain that there is nothing wrong with the A10, it is just that other aircraft have surpassed its capability through no fault of its own.

Yes, faster is better. We dont have enough aircraft for every engaged unit. CAS is assigned to a geographical area and is called in when needed. You can be assigned to a specific tasking ahead of time, but the vast majority of the time in OIF/OEF we were called for unexpected troops in contact situations. 600 knots is important in those cases, no one is sitting on a runway either you are in a cap somewhere or get called off cover for one unit to go help one tgat is engaged.

In over 70 CAS missions never got a hole in my aircraft because it is really hard to hit something faster than a bullet from a 45acp. No, nothing soaks up metal and protects a pilot like an A10, but when it gets hit it has to leave, and they get hit easily in any high threat area. They wont even be tasked to high threat areas these days because of that.
Allen Who cares how much a jdam or lgb costs when our men need them? With as much money our idiot leaders in DC spend on waste it never even crossed my mind what a bomb to save our men cost. You can also forget about visual cheap dumb bomb deliveries-not going to happen. Ten meters is a great visual bomb...they will average more than that and you can decide what is good enough yourself when YOU call in danger close on your position.
The A10 does not have the largest payload. There is a difference between what an aircraft is capable of dragging airborne and what is practical in combat. More weapons equals more thrust required...and the f15e has the grunt to get stuff airborne and the legs to stick around. Unfortunately it is not stealthy, and the ever increasing capability of modern sams it too will be eclipsed by aircraft that can better operate in such environs.
Dont make the mistake of fighting the last war. CAS today is far more effective than in vietnam. CAS tomorrow may very well need to take place in a higher threat environment than Iraq. I was proud of my F-15E but I would drop it like a bad habit if you gave me something more effective at providing the support our Marines and Soldiers deserve. It is true that change for change's sake can get people killed. But so can nostalgia. My favorite aircraft of all time is the Supermarine Spitfire but i wouldnt go to war in one today. OIF and OEF were very low threat environments for pilots/ CAS assets. That is certainly not the case for many other adversaries and certainky not for our strategic threats. If we dont adapt to that, we will fail if we are needed then. If money were no object we would keep everything. Unfortunately, thst isnt the real world.
I dont know how the F-35 will turn out. The f-22 is tremendous but we arent getting many and it doesnt carry as many ground weapons as non stealth fighters.

Anonymous said...

The warthog can deliver the bacon to those muslims.

Anonymous said...

Air Force is probably getting pressure to retire the A10's from the Department of Justice, which wants them for Jughead's "Domestic Security Force" he kept talking about before his first election!

But seriously, in a place with total air superiority and not much in the way of a SAM threat environment, the CAS job could be done by a 30 year old, clapped-out Boeing 737-100 with two guys in the back rolling JDAMs out the door on a luggage conveyor belt while the plane orbited in lay circles at FL-150.

The A10 was made for killing Soviet tanks in the Fulda Gap, under cover from NATO air superiority fighters, in an era before every swinging-Dick infantry squad leader had a MANPAD at his disposal.

Pilot survivability? Develop a drone CAS platform that can be deployed and controlled locally from the engagement area. No pilot to worry about then.

There are no obsolete weapons, but there sure are obsolete tactics. And relying on the A10 in an obsolete tactic.