Air Power does not come cheap.

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Jericho941
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Air Power does not come cheap.

Post by Jericho941 » Tue Oct 27, 2015 6:58 pm

USA Today
WASHINGTON – Russian warplanes sent to Syria to back the regime of Bashar Assad are breaking down at a rapid rate that appears to be affecting their ability to strike targets, according to a senior Defense official.

Nearly one-third of Russian attack planes and half of its transport aircraft are grounded at any time as the harsh, desert conditions take a toll on equipment and crews, said the official who was not authorized to speak publicly about sensitive intelligence matters.

The Russians appear to be having difficulty adapting to the dusty conditions, and the number of airstrikes they have conducted seems to have dipped slightly.

"For deployed forces, that's a hideous rate," said Richard Aboulafia, an aviation analyst at the Teal Group, an aerospace consulting firm.
Welcome to the sandbox, Ivan.
"An awful lot of expeditionary warfare revolves around logistics," Aboulafia said. "A lot of it comes down to experience. They don't have that much of it."

For U.S. warplanes, readiness rates of less than 80% would attract attention from top brass, said a senior Air Force commander with multiple combat deployments in the Middle East. The officer was not authorized to speak publicly about the matter. However, the officer noted that planes break, especially in austere, deployed conditions. He characterized mission-readiness rates of less than 80% as a matter of concern, not alarm.
It would be a matter of concern to generals. From the wing king it'd be an irritant. For the maintenance group commander, a migraine. For everyone down the chain, a Hollywood-style nuke with a convenient digital counter at 00:02.
U.S. pilots and aircraft have flown combat missions in the Middle East almost continuously since the first Gulf War. They struck Saddam Hussein's forces to push them from Kuwait, patrolled no-fly zones in Iraq for more than a decade, and fought wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Last year, they returned to strike Islamic State militants on the ground in Iraq and Syria.
Do not forget, please, that with experience also comes mileage.

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PawPaw
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Re: Air Power does not come cheap.

Post by PawPaw » Tue Oct 27, 2015 9:37 pm

I sent boys over there in 89, and while enforcing the no-fly zone and the lead up to the 2001 war, we've been over there for 25 years. That's a lot of experience, almost generational experience. Being forward deployed is expensive, not just in filthy lucre. It takes a toll on manpower, families, entire societies.

Of course, we've been in Korea for what... 60 years, but not under the constant threat of active combat. For many years, the Army looked on Korea as almost a vacation spot. A break from peacetime routine. A place to work hard and play hard. Korea had beer and women, two things that US soldiers understand.
Dennis Dezendorf
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Steamforger
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Re: Air Power does not come cheap.

Post by Steamforger » Tue Oct 27, 2015 10:34 pm

PawPaw wrote:I sent boys over there in 89, and while enforcing the no-fly zone and the lead up to the 2001 war, we've been over there for 25 years. That's a lot of experience, almost generational experience. Being forward deployed is expensive, not just in filthy lucre. It takes a toll on manpower, families, entire societies.

Of course, we've been in Korea for what... 60 years, but not under the constant threat of active combat. For many years, the Army looked on Korea as almost a vacation spot. A break from peacetime routine. A place to work hard and play hard. Korea had beer and women, two things that US soldiers understand.
Civilian employees too. I throw my hat in the ring every year to go to Camp Humphreys. No luck as of yet, but I was reclassified last year and picked up another 2 grades which should make it a little easier this year.

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randy
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Re: Air Power does not come cheap.

Post by randy » Tue Oct 27, 2015 11:40 pm

Steamforger wrote:Civilian employees too. I throw my hat in the ring every year to go to Camp Humphreys. No luck as of yet, but I was reclassified last year and picked up another 2 grades which should make it a little easier this year.
Heh. Had a civilian employee (GS-14 IIRC) deploy with us to TEAM STUPID one year (mind-80's). We we all were wearing BDUs (which for the AF at that time was a special duty issue uniform, the normal field uniform was the old OD fatigues). His had "DOD Civilian" in place of the USAF strip, which of course wasn't readable from a distance. And his hair did not meet regulations from any service.

One morning we were eating breakfast at the Osan Golf Club (closest chow to Tent City, and pretty good in it's own right). Across the room was a Colonel who spent the entire meal glaring at our table. I mean "If looks could kill" type glaring. It soon came apparent he was focused on our civilian.

On the way out, one of our guys heard him mutter to his table mates something about "g-d reservists". :mrgreen:
...even before I read MHI, my response to seeing a poster for the stars of the latest Twilight movies was "I see 2 targets and a collaborator".

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Steamforger
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Re: Air Power does not come cheap.

Post by Steamforger » Tue Oct 27, 2015 11:57 pm

Yeah, the "DOD Civilian" tape still exists, but there's usually a black triangle with a "U.S." inside it where the rank patch goes. It almost looks like this guy is wearing some previously earned tabs as well. I can't think of anything we'd have that even came close to looking like a tab of any kind.
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blackeagle603
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Re: Air Power does not come cheap.

Post by blackeagle603 » Wed Oct 28, 2015 12:04 am

Yeah, with old Soviet stuff and I'm surprised they're still getting as many up as that article suggests.
The ones stuck on deck are almost certainly all well into hanger queen status and already heavily cannabilized for parts.

A week of 18 hour day flying and we'd be getting mostly PMC birds. Not unusual for a go bird to not be up in time and necessitate hotpumping/crew swapping an up bird. 12 hours days with spares on hand we would keep it up pretty good for quite a while. Helped a lot when we'd get a stand down on 8th day for washes and catch up on phase inspections/or if a prop, gearbox or engine needed changed.
"The Guncounter: More fun than a barrel of tattooed knife-fighting chain-smoking monkey butlers with drinking problems and excessive gambling debts!"

"The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered, as the palladium of the liberties of a republic;" Justice Story

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First Shirt
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Re: Air Power does not come cheap.

Post by First Shirt » Wed Oct 28, 2015 12:34 am

First thing I thought when I read this subject line:

"Air Power does not come cheap, but the lack of air power is awfully damned expensive."
But there ain't many troubles that a man caint fix, with seven hundred dollars and a thirty ought six."
Lindy Cooper Wisdom

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JAG2955
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Re: Air Power does not come cheap.

Post by JAG2955 » Wed Oct 28, 2015 2:37 am

Heh, you should have seen the morning briefs when the MV-22 squadrons were coming online. <50% readiness was not uncommon.

I also loved explaining why the CH-53 readiness was too low. There were something like 3 extra main gearboxes IN THE WORLD. 1 was in a war packup, I think. Maybe Norway. One was at the manufacturer, where they were duplicating it since they lost the plans or some such shenanigans. And the third was in repair at the depot. Did it matter? Noooo, it's All Your Fault.

Langenator
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Re: Air Power does not come cheap.

Post by Langenator » Wed Oct 28, 2015 12:45 pm

Steamforger wrote:Yeah, the "DOD Civilian" tape still exists, but there's usually a black triangle with a "U.S." inside it where the rank patch goes. It almost looks like this guy is wearing some previously earned tabs as well. I can't think of anything we'd have that even came close to looking like a tab of any kind.
No, he's just wearing a 101st division patch (which still retains the 'Airborne' tab over the top for historical reasons) and the standard ISAF patch.

I don't remember any of our civilians (the ones who wore uniforms - most didn't, unless you count 5.11s and polos) wearing unit patches, though. Just name, DoD Civilian, and the non-rank.
Fortuna Fortis Paratus

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