Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Whatever happened to those predicted "Helicopter Dogfights"?

Raise your hand if you've ever looked up and saw an AH-1W/Z zooming overhead with Sidewinder missiles on the tip.

Raise your hand if you remember reading in several military aviation publications (they're a dying breed unfortunately) and saw pics of AH-64's with twin packs of Stinger missiles on each wing tip along with articles talking about future "Helicopter Dogfights".

If you remember any of that then I ask the question.

Why isn't it front and center anymore?

We're talking about deep raids and even though our CH-53K's are gonna be mostly logistics they'll do troop insertions too (along with Army CH-47's).  Our MV-22's will definitely be targeted by all sorts of anti-air to include enemy attack helicopters.

Not to muddy the waters even further but if we're talking about peer vs peer combat then this is probably one of the skill sets that needs to be discussed if not dusted off and put back into training (I don't even know if it's been taken out, I do know that it isn't in any of the stuff I've been reading lately).

Am I off base?  Is this why the Marine Corps is talking about that super duper UAV that will supposedly do it all?  Has technology basically negated the need for our attack and utility birds to prepare for helicopter to helicopter fights?

Side note.  How much was the helicopter dogfight talked about?  They made a freaking movie about the subject!  How many of you guys remember the flick "Firebirds" starring Nicolas Cage and Tommy Lee Jones?

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