The Defense Department is working on tests that would determine if Lockheed Martin's (NYSE:LMT) F-35 has the ability to fully replace the A-10 Warthog attack jet. The tests will be conducted in late 2017 or early 2018, says a spokesperson from the Pentagon's Office of Operational Test and Evaluation cited by Politico.Here.
The F-35 hasn't fared well against older jets in prior tests. According to a report in the military blog War Is Boring, an older General Dynamics (NYSE:GD) F-16 outmaneuvered the expensive F-35 in an air combat test in January.
But the F-35 Joint Program Office has said the report was misleading, that the F-35's technology is designed to work best at long range and not necessarily in dogfights.
The upcoming tests vs. the A-10s would be a key consideration for Congress as the Air Force looks to retire the Warthog fleet to save money.
But if the F-35 can't provide the close-air support needed, the Air Force might need to invest in a follow-on jet.
This is where credibility comes into play.
With all the games and scheming that is part of the F-35 program, do you really believe that they will release information that doesn't say that the airplane shits diamonds, gives its pilots blowjobs and is better than the A-10 in every way?
Didn't think so.
Which means that for outside consumption any info we get that is released by the program is useless. We can only hope that some patriot decides to leak the real report. Its irrelevant though. The stock market is taking a huge hit. The phony recovery is finally being seen by even the mainstream media as being fake.
The plane MIGHT make it into service but the numbers will be cut so dramatically that we WILL have to come up with a plan B. Don't believe me? Check this out from Army Magazine.
...the Army is not only being told to shrink—it announced a reduction of 40,000 more active-duty personnel in July—it is also being asked to accept a reduced state of readiness, defer maintenance of its physical infrastructure, and delay major modernization initiatives into the distant future. Other services are being asked to live with less too, but none of them is taking the kind of cuts the Army must absorb. Its share of the Pentagon’s base budget has fallen to less than a quarter—23.7 percent, actually, if President Barack Obama has his way in fiscal year (FY) 2016—and modernization plans have been pared by roughly half.Yeah.
And that’s assuming budget sequestration doesn’t happen in FY 2016. If it does, Army leaders will have to contemplate draconian reductions in force structure, readiness and modernization. The only reason senior Army leaders have signed up for this Olympic-scale mismatch between resources and requirements is that the entire joint force is subject to congressionally mandated budget caps, and the caps are set to expire early in the next decade.
What if the threat of sequestration goes away and the Army still gets no relief? What if after stretching and straining for two decades to meet its obligations, it discovers national strategy and the political culture are more inclined to channel budget resources to the other services? That is what the balance of this article is about. More precisely, it is about the very real possibility the military department with the smallest budget share—the Army—will end up footing much of the bill for new Air Force planes and Navy warships.
I've been on my soapbox about the ground components being shrunk and complained that the US Army is getting too small and was shouted down by some in the Army that said it was to be expected.
Now. Almost too late. They see my point.
The USMC is destroying its own ground component to pay for the F-35. It seems that the US Army is realizing the other services are doing to it what Marine Air is doing to the Corps.
Long story short?
The fight about the F-35 is FAR from over.