Wednesday, July 05, 2017

The Philippine Air Force FA-50PH's shown sporting Air to Ground Missiles...

via ASEAN blog.
The Philippine Air Force FA-50PH 'Fighting Eagle' Fighter / Surface Attack / Lead-in Fighter Trainers (F / SA / LIFT) with tail numbers PH007 and PH002 from the 7th Tactical Fighter Squadron of the Air Defense Wing armed with an AIM-9 Sidewinder short-range air-to-air missile, M117 unguided, general-purpose bomb that can also be configured with a low-drag tail fin for medium and high-altitude deliveries that has a nominal weight of 750 pounds (340 kg), and an inert/captive version of an AGM-65 Maverick air-to-ground tactical missile (AGM) designed for close air support.
Story here. 

I remain alarmed at the price tag of Marine Air and how its gobbling up the budget yet I still see a hole in the force.

We need a modern day A-4 Skyhawk.

We need something like the FA-50PH or even better a Grippen.


The honest truth I believe is this.  The only configuration of the F-35 that makes sense and will truly be a solid upgrade from the current plane is the F-35B (if Marine Corps leadership had sold it on that simple basis then they'd be much more credible...instead they're acting like the plane can pleasure the pilot, act as an AWACS, out maneuver a flying saucer from Mars and be cheaper to maintain than a WW2 P-51).

But it will come at the price of being horribly expensive to maintain.

It's my belief that the cost of the plane (real cost not the costs told to the public) and how much it will cost to maintain it will see it retired early.  Models that are flying in Squadron service will simply be trashed instead of upgraded due to cost.

So we need a backup.

Harriers will serve in that role for a while, but after that if we keep fast movers we're gonna need a replacement/low end fighter attack plane.

That's where a cheap jet fighter comes in.

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