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No Light Attack Planes Any Time Soon: Air Force Undersecretary

Posted by Colin Clark on


AFA: The Air Force won’t issue a Request For Information on possible Light Attack aircraft, originally scheduled to come out December, in favor of doing a lot more experiments, Air Force Undersecretary Matt Donovan told reporters this morning. The service has been dithering for over a decade about whether to buy propeller-driven aircraft for affordable close… Keep reading →

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F-35’s First Combat Strike Won’t End Debate

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: The first-ever real-world strike by an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is a big symbolic moment, as the Pentagon is well aware. It’s also a milestone towards making the F-35 a close-support aircraft to bomb targets threatening US ground troops, replacing the beloved A-10 Warthog. That’s why the military not only had a press release… Keep reading →

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SecAF: Don’t Expect Large Budget Increases After 2019; $2.4B Set For Light Attack

Posted by Colin Clark on


The Air Force placed a $2.4 billion placeholder in the 2019 budget to buy Light Attack Aircraft over the next five years, Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson told reporters this morning.

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A Wider War: Army Revises Multi-Domain Battle With Air Force Help

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


AUSA: How do you coordinate foot soldiers moving four miles per hour with fighter jets moving 1,500 mph?  To address the differences in speed and range, the Army’s Training & Doctrine Command is already revising its new “battlefield framework” – which was first circulated just in July – to open up the Army’s traditional geographic zones… Keep reading →

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Reaper Drones: The New Close Air Support Weapon

Posted by Colin Clark on


CORRECTS: Name and title of operations group commander CREECH AIR FORCE BASE: Over two days of briefings here by everyone from pilots to maintainers to the operations group commander of the 432nd Wing, one message rang out loud and clear: the Reaper has grown into a key Close Air Support (CAS) tool for the US military and… Keep reading →

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Gen. Pawlikowski Unveils Key Air Force Planning Group: PCA, PEW, OA-X, MDC2!

Posted by Colin Clark on


ORLANDO:  A half-dozen people in the Air Force are helping to define the service’s as part of a major new approach to deciding what weapons to buy, known as Strategic Development Planning Experimentation. The effort is led by Gen. Ellen Pawlikowski, the commander of Air Force Materiel Command at Wright-Patterson AFB. The first iteration of SDPE (as… Keep reading →

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Drones Do Excellent Urban Close Air Support; Mideast F-35A Deployment In Several Years

Posted by Colin Clark on


WASHINGTON: If Congress was skeptical of bombers and fighters doing Close Air Support, how will they react to MQ-9s doing the toughest CAS mission around — taking out targets in the close confines of an urban fight? Gen. Hawk Carlisle, the soon-to-retire head of Air Combat Command, told reporters this morning that the Reaper is… Keep reading →

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McCain’s 300 Low-End Fighters A ‘Great Idea:’ CSAF Gen. Goldfein

Posted by Colin Clark on


WASHINGTON: A key part of Sen. John McCain’s alternative defense budget proposal is the rapid purchase of 300 “low-cost, light-attack fighters that would require minimal work to develop.” I asked Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein today what he thought of McCain’s proposal, contained in Restoring American Power. “Great idea,” he said, pointing… Keep reading →

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No, Mr. Trump, You Can’t Replace F-35 With A ‘Comparable’ F-18

Posted by Doug Birkey on


President-Elect Trump’s recent announcement that he is considering acquiring the F/A-18 Super Hornet in place of the F-35 Lightning II does not add up for a leader who seeks “to make America great again.” Too much is at stake for the United States to rely on a fighter aircraft design whose roots extend back to… Keep reading →

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F-35A Looks A Lock For IOC OK; CAS As Good As F-16

Posted by Colin Clark on


WASHINGTON: All the boxes are ticked for the Air Force to declare the F-35A ready for combat. The final clearance hasn’t been given by the man who will decide, Air Combat Command’s Gen. Hawk Carlisle, but he has received all the data on the planes, pilots and maintainers, said Lt. Col. Steven Anderson, 388th Maintenance… Keep reading →

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