Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Aftermath of the CH-53 crash in Japan...Marine Air is in trouble...

The concept has failed.

It's time to put it in the dustbin of history and move.  An aviation centric Marine Corps is just not workable.

I don't know the details of this crash and I hope that the crew is safe, but the birds eye view of this is plain as the nose on your face.  Marine Air is being asked to do too much with too little and the results are what you're seeing.

Crashes, injuries and death.

The pilots, crews and personnel of the Wing deserve better.  Its time to bring common sense back to the Corps. 

Rethink this thing.

Reinforce the Marine Air-Ground Task Force.  Don't unbalance things in the hope of making warfare "simple" and "easy".

Partisan One Military SUV ...

Thanks to Jonathan for the link!

via Motor 1
The necessities of modern war have forced combat vehicles to get sophisticated, like the massive JLTV that replaces the venerable Humvee. However, Dr. Juri E. Postnikov thinks that there’s an alternative. His Partisan One concept eschews cutting-edge tech for the ability to put huge numbers of them on the road in a quick period of time. The goal is to be the “best car for the world's worst roads."

Dr. Postnikov says that the design is deliberately primitive. The Partisan One’s shape takes the two-box design to its logical extreme with an ultra-angular front end and large rectangle for the passenger compartment. There’s not a single curvy line visible on the SUV.

As a military vehicle, survivability is a major concern. The circular recesses along the exterior act as points for attaching armor plates. There would also be locations underneath the vehicle for fitting V-shaped armor as protection against explosives in the ground.

Underneath the angular body panels, the Partisan One would use a high-strength steel space frame and wishbone suspension. The company seems rather unsure about the engine, though. The firm’s release offers the “possibility of installing various power units,” including powerplants with a transverse or longitudinal layout.

The thinking behind creating this box on wheels is that it would be an incredibly simple to build. Dr. Postnikov also imagines a variety of body layouts, including a short-wheelbase three-door, long-wheelbase five-door, and pickup. Conceivably, 6x6 and 8x8 variants would be possible, too. An army could fit knockdown kits for 5 of the vehicles in standard shipping container and then deliver the vehicles where the force needs them the most.
Story here. 

Ugly as hell...but maybe they're onto something.

West Point is the canary in the coal mine...The Officer Corps is in trouble...

Thanks to Itsa_Me for the link!

via Medium
Just recently a cadet openly and obviously plagiarized his History research paper, and his civilian professor reported it. The evidence was overwhelming — there was not the slightest question of his guilt, yet the cadet was not found. The professor, and indeed all the faculty who knew of the case, were completely demoralized. This is the new norm for the cadet honor system. In fact, there is now an addition to the honor system (the Willful Admission Process) which essentially guarantees that if a cadet admits a violation, then separation is not even a possibility. In reality, separation is not a possibility anyway because the Superintendent refuses to impose that sanction.
Academic standards are also nonexistent. I believe this trend started approximately ten years ago, and it has continued to get worse. West Point has stated standards for academic expectations and performance, but they are ignored. Cadets routinely fail multiple classes and they are not separated at the end-of-semester Academic Boards. Their professors recommend “Definitely Separate,” but those recommendations are totally disregarded.
I recently taught a cadet who failed four classes in one semester (including mine), in addition to several she had failed in previous semesters, and she was retained at the Academy. As a result, professors have lost hope and faith in the entire Academic Board process. It has been made clear that cadets can fail a multitude of classes and they will not be separated. Instead, when they fail (and they do to a staggering extent), the Dean simply throws them back into the mix and expects the faculty to somehow drag them through the academic program until they manage to earn a passing grade.
Story here. 


This is a story of anguish and pain.  Its also one of frustration.  I don't know what's going on at West Point but if this is even half true then you can point to this as another data point of why we will lose the next "real" war.

Don't get my wording jacked up.  The stuff in Afghanistan, Syria, Africa, Yemen and Iraq is real but its not against a peer opponent.  That's what I mean by real.

Back on task.

West Point is suppose to be a rigorous environment that tests the mettle of potential officers both physically and academically.

It is failing in that mission.  While the writer focused on the academics I just can't help but wonder about the physical.

We know for a fact that they're failing the moral test.

Another great American institution has crumbled.  In the past we laughed it off and made ourselves feel better by saying that its just another symptom of big govt.

While annoying we could deal with nonsense from the EPA,FEMA, Social Security Admin etc.

But what happens when the US military becomes just another failed govt institution?

I have no idea but we're about to find out.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Boeing to test CH-53K engines on the CH-47D Block II

via Rotor and Wings International.
Boeing plans to conduct a flight demonstration with a CH-47D Chinook in the “next couple years,” the company said during a briefing at the Association of the U.S. Army annual convention Monday. The test would aim to see whether its heavy-lift helicopter could someday accommodate a new, more fuel-efficient and more powerful engine.

The “proof of concept” test, which Boeing is pursuing under a cooperative research and development agreement with General Electric and the U.S. Army, would use the new T-408 engine — same engine GE is building for the Marine Corps’ new Sikorsky CH-53K King — according to Chuck Dabundo, Boeing VP of cargo helicopter programs. Army Chinooks are currently powered by the Honeywell T-55.

Dabundo and Col. Greg Fortier, the Army’s cargo project manager, emphasized during the Washington, D.C, briefing that the Army does not have a requirement for a new engine. The Army is focused on upgrading its CH-47Fs to the Block II configuration.

Block II includes an improved drivetrain, new rotor blades, a streamlined fuel-tank design and a strengthening of the fuselage structure, all to increase the helicopter’s lifting power.
Boeing has taken apart the first of three Chinooks that will be remanufactured into test aircraft for the Block II upgrade effort. Block II flight tests are slated to begin in the summer of 2019 in Mesa, Arizona, and will last about two years.

Dabundo also said the first of 15 CH-47s ordered by India will begin undergoing final assembly in Philadelphia this week. India is one of 20 foreign customers for the Chinook. Tandy Rotte, Boeing director of global sales and marketing for cargo, said, “We’re looking to grow that number in the next couple years.”
Hmm.  Is it worth the effort?  I guess that's why they do the testing!

Have you heard about the beef between Meyers and Blizerian?

Just plain wow.

Meyer is back in the news.  Nothing wrong with that but I kinda expected a Medal Of Honor winner to be much more low key. 

Anyway read the story here.

This is a weird feud in my opinion.  Things are definitely getting goofy when this shows up anywhere near my news feed.  I definitely need to adjust the settings.

RAF increases F-35 risk rating

via IHS Janes.
The United Kingdom has increased its risk rating of the Lockheed Martin F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter because of delays in delivering representative simulators to the Royal Air Force (RAF).

Details of the issues with the United Kingdom’s F-35 simulators were revealed in a supplementary memorandum to the March 2017 Delivery Carrier Strike study, which was released by the UK Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee on 9 October.

The memorandum said the “the Senior Responsible Owner (SRO) for the UK’s Lightning II programme revised his programme delivery confidence, reflecting compression in the schedule, from amber to amber/red in June 2017.
Risk.  You can't talk F-35 without talking about two things.  Risk and Cost.

Las Vegas attack becoming surreal. Shooter attacked Hotel Security Guard BEFORE attacking concert.

via Heavy
Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock shot Mandalay Bay security guard Jesus Campos six minutes before opening fire on the Route 91 Harvest concert festival last Sunday, killing 58 people and wounding nearly 500 others, Sheriff Joe Lombardo said Monday, changing the timeline of events.

Lombardo and other authorities had previously said Campos was shot after the gunfire began. But Lombardo now says Paddock fired at Campos, who was unarmed, from inside his room on the 32nd floor of the hotel at 9:59 p.m. Lombardo has said that Paddock unloaded more than 200 rounds into the hallway and Campos was wounded by a ricocheting bullet. Paddock then began shooting at the concert festival at 10:05 p.m., but police did not get to the 32nd floor until 10:17 p.m., two minutes after the gunfire had stopped. Because the shooting had stopped, police didn’t enter the room until 11:20 p.m., which is when Paddock, 64, was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Story here. 

Hmm.  So let me get this straight.  Paddock shoots the Security Guard, then he turns the weapon toward the concert but police did not get up to the 32nd floor until 10:17?

Kinda makes that "dramatic" breach recording take on much less relevance doesn't it.

This whole thing reeks.

This is the common thread in incidents like this.  SWAT is fantastic but they're not gonna cut it when it comes to situations in progress.

Street officers need to be given the tools, training and leadership to conduct "in extremis" assaults on criminals like this one.  Imagine this playing out differently.

Imagine the security guard getting shot, the patrol supervisor and shift Lt make the call that they have a terrible situation and they assemble a four man team of patrolmen that have been to SWAT school to conduct a hasty breach to prevent wider bloodshed.  These selected officers (and a number of them would be assigned to each shift) would have go bags that contained helmets, heavier body armor, shields, stun grenades, etc.

If such an element existed in the Las Vegas Sheriff's Office then they might have been able to breach on this bastard in the middle of his shooting spree.

Weird. A Black Confederate Soldier?

Andrew Chandler and his former slave Silas Chandler, 44th Mississippi Infantry, Confederate States Army. Silas saved Andrew’s life at the Battle of Chickamauga. Andrew later gave Silas land to build a church for his community.s
Well done history.

Once again you hit me with something so batshit crazy that I thought it couldn't be true in a million years...but it was.

Warhammer News. Britain 'draws up battle plan for war with North Korea'

via The
Britain is reportedly preparing for the possibility of war breaking out with North Korea as concerns rise that another provocative missile test could trigger a military response by the US.

North Korea is being closely watched amid fears it could launch another long-range missile test on Tuesday to mark the anniversary of the founding of its ruling party.

Bellicose rhetoric from Donald Trump has heightened tensions in the region in recent months, prompting British officials to draw up military plans for a response to a break out of hostilities, it was reported.

Among the plans disclosed by the Daily Mail is the deployment of the Navy's newest aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth, before it has undergone flight trials.

"We have plenty of ships to send… the Type-45 destroyers, the Type-23 frigates. Britain’s new aircraft carrier could be pressed into service early if things turn south," a senior Whitehall source told the newspaper.
Story here. 

Uh wow.  They're actually talking about sending the QE ahead of schedule to the fight?

A plea for extra defense funding, a ploy to be seen as still militarily relevant or an easy fight that everyone wants to pile in on since N. Korea is a VERY weak country when it comes to its air force and navy?

My guess is all 3.

What happens if you push a war and everyone wants in?  What happens if the plans go stupid and that minor risk becomes the course of the war?

I don't think this will be as easy and painless as many planners seem to think. I keep hearing about a limited strike with China ensuring that it doesn't escalate (meaning that China guarantees no invasion, to the North and we get assurances on no nuke retaliation).  Don't think that will work but I think we're all gonna see.

Hollywood is filthy and they tried to lecture us? Small Rant!

via NYTimes.
When Gwyneth Paltrow was 22 years old, she got a role that would take her from actress to star: The film producer Harvey Weinstein hired her for the lead in the Jane Austen adaptation “Emma.” Before shooting began, he summoned her to his suite at the Peninsula Beverly Hills hotel for a work meeting that began uneventfully.

It ended with Mr. Weinstein placing his hands on her and suggesting they head to the bedroom for massages, she said.

“I was a kid, I was signed up, I was petrified,” she said in an interview, publicly disclosing that she was sexually harassed by the man who ignited her career and later helped her win an Academy Award.

She refused his advances, she said, and confided in Brad Pitt, her boyfriend at the time. Mr. Pitt confronted Mr. Weinstein, and soon after, the producer threatened her not to tell anyone else about his come-on. “I thought he was going to fire me,” she said.
Story here.

Ok.  I admit that I think a bit differently than other people but this is disgusting!  I'm not talking about the over the top behavior.  Perverts have existed since the dawn of man.

No what I find disgusting is that these Hollywood types are stating that this was an open secret.

Think about that!

These are the same people that have lectured the masses about various topics and their own houses are filled with filth that they haven't dealt with.

Even more stunning?

These Hollywood types have mixed and mingled with mainstream news media AND politicians!

I wonder how much depravity actually exists among the so called elite. I'm not talking about private stuff either.  I'm talking about "common" knowledge that they keep among themselves and we never hear about.

We are wary of the crack or meth head.  We steer clear of the gangsters and the hookers.  But the most vile creatures of all are probably making our movies and tv shows.

Rant over.