Hagel Proposes Retiring A-10, Cutting LCS to 32 Ships

Hagel Proposes Retiring A-10, Cutting LCS to 32 Ships

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel made official Monday many of the expected cuts to legacy and modernization weapons programs across the military to include historic favorites like the A-10 and controversial platforms like the Littoral Combat Ship.

Hagel and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey outlined the Pentagon’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2015 as the Defense Department set the tone ahead of a series of expected battles with Congress who have fought cuts to these programs in the past.

The Pentagon announced its plan to cut the entire A-10 and U-2 fleets as the Air Force transitions to the F-35 and Global Hawk respectively. Air Force leaders had said in the months leading up to the announcement that the service can no longer afford aircraft that fly niche missions.

The Army saw the service’s number one vehicle modernization priority get whacked when the Pentagon announced the end of the Ground Combat Vehicle program. Slated to replace the Bradley, Army leaders struggled to settle on requirements and costs continued to spiral for the vehicle that didn’t seem to match the Army’s push to become lighter and more agile.

Hagel seemed to poke the Army for another failed modernization program with his request that the Army deliver “realistic visions” for vehicle modernization  in the coming year.

Meanwhile, the defense secretary took a shot at the Navy’s plan to build 52 Littoral Combat Ships. He said the Navy is “relying too heavily on the LCS to achieve its long term goals for ship numbers.” The defense secretary said there will be no new contract negotiations beyond 32 ships even though Navy Secretary Ray Mabus has supported the ship in the face of critical evaluations that questioned the ship’s combat worthiness.

Hagel also outlined how the Pentagon plans to follow through on President Obama’s promise to keep an 11-ship aircraft carrier fleet. The Navy needs to pay about $6 billion to complete the mid-life refueling and overhaul of the USS George Washington to keep the carrier in service.

It was unclear until Monday where the Navy was going to find the extra funding. Hagel announced that half of the Navy’s cruiser fleet – or 11 ships – will be laid up and placed in reduced operational status in order to find savings as the fleet is modernized.

However, Hagel said the Navy can only keep 11 carriers in the fleet if Congress can repeal the sequestration cuts the military is facing.

“We would have no other choice than to retire [the USS George Washington] should sequestration-level cuts be re-imposed,” Hagel said.

The Navy’s variant of the Joint Strike Fighter, the F-35C, is similarly under pressure from sequestration cuts. Hagel said the Pentagon would have to halt procurement of the carrier variant for two years if sequestration remains.

Of course, the Pentagon and Congress have already waged many of the battles where lines were drawn by Hagel and the military brass Monday afternoon. Few expect these proposals to work their way through Congress in a mid-term election year as many lawmakers have a lot to lose if these legacy fleets get retired.

The A-10 is a good example. Air Force leaders and lawmakers in both houses have battled for the past two years to retire large chunks of the A-10 fleet. Congress has stymied the Air Force’s past attempts and few analysts expect the service to succeed this year either.

Join the Conversation

I agree with him on the LCS (Little Crappy Ships) but the A-10 should be kept at all costs. The F-35 (Junk Strike Fighter) will NEVER BE ABLE TO REPLACE THE A-10 for CAS. And he knows it. I sure hope all the Governors & Congressman/Women with A-10’s in their Air National Guard units tell him to F_ _K O_F, remember they cut the CHECKS!!!

Where does the $$$ come from to keep the A-10?

Stop production of the F 35. Break connections with the special interests. Members of congress can give up some of their perks. We have to many star ranks in the service. Cut back on outside contracts. Close more bases.

From the So Failed “Junk Strike Fighter” program, that is what the Air Force wants to use that money on because their F-35 is now 60% more expensive than what they planned for and that is the only way they can afford the Junk Strike Fighter. But the “White Scarf ” crowd must have their worthless toy and who cares if a few Ground Pounders get killed because the F-35 has so few CAS capabilities, that it is ALL BUT USELESS FOR CAS, as long as they can Fly at 20K with their Scarf flapping in the Wind, thats all they care about.

I’m actually happy to hear the LCS take a big cut. I don’t think the cut is big enough still, but it’s progress.

Highlight of this article for me though was: “The Navy’s variant of the Joint Strike Fighter, the F-35C, is similarly under pressure from sequestration cuts. Hagel said the Pentagon would have to halt procurement of the carrier variant for two years if sequestration remains.”

I know Hagel doesn’t want to buy more Super Hornets, but if the F-35C is halted from production I’m hoping LM will actually get serious about trying to make it land on a carrier. They’ve been sucking for a while now. The Navy asked to take a three year break from the F-35C and was flat out told “No way.” Clearly the Navy wants more Super Hornets and I think it’s possible so long as Boeing pulls out all the stops. If Boeing keeps the line open for a little while longer and builds a few with their own money I wonder if the Navy could take them? Boeing would still get long term payment on them for the Navy to operate them. Here’s hoping the F/A-18E/F stays in production. If the F-35C never delivers on its promises (which it shows no sign of doing) the Super will be our only tac air for carrier based operations for a while and it’d be best to have a lot of them.

Like it or not the F-35 is the future of tactical airpower and is needed to replace large numbers of F-16s, F/A-18s, and AV-8s. You’re going to have to find that money to save the A-10 (and it should be saved) somewhere else.

With LCS we should and can produce a better frigate instead. Yet restarting the process for a 5th generation fighter will set us many years behind.

From those drawing entitlements, Food Stamps, Housing subsidies and free medical care! But that is not likely going to happen because the money saved by massive military cutbacks will fortify Democratic voting blocs.

Well given that the Air Force got told to pound sand when it wanted 700+ F-22, which oh by the way now would have been cheaper than the F-35, what other choice does the Air Force have tee? That A-10 that we all love has to have a semi-permissive environment to operate in…what platform is going to knock down the integrated air defenses to allow for a large ground force movement that needs CAS? That is why you need the JSF at this point.

It could up-date the F-16’s & F-15’s that it planned to do, but now they don’t want to. I wonder why??? Could it be that up-dated F-15’s & F-16’s would fly rings around the Junk Strike Fighter which turns like an old F-4? and would make the F-35 look as pathetic as it Really is?? And that then Congress would seriously look at cutting funding for the F-35 when up-dated 15’s & 16’s out perform it ?

Plus the F-35 was never intended to be an Air Superiority fighter ( a job it can’t do very well) it was designed to be a Bomb Truck, with Stealth from the front only so it could get to a target after the F-22’s cleared the way.

Cut the MIGHTY LCS fleet to ONLY 32, OMG! where will the Navy get it POWER, PRESENCE and PROJECTION,
I feat that this is a grave mistake, without the fearsome and mighty LCS fleet the Chinese might actually lay claim to the entire Pacific Ocean and even the Hawaiian Islands (after all they have a 1,000 year old scroll that says they were there first). Without the LCS how can we find enemy submarines, how can we land the Marines, how can we shoot down ballistic missiles, how can we launch land attack strikes with Tomahawk missile, how in c h r i s t’s sake can we keep the money flowing to Lockhead. Answer me that if you dare? ;-P

William, no one believes your BS anymore…

We’ve been updating the F-15s and F-16s for many years so they could continue to be useful until their replacement. How much longer are you going to put it off. These designs were introduced in the early to mid 1970s. 40 years have passed since then and you think the best we can do is put new avionics on them and call it a day?

If capability was measured by turning radius biplanes would still be the world’s premier fighters. Yet the entire picture is what matters and when you look at the entire picture the F-35 is far more capable than the F-16. Do you really think an F-16 carrying two 2000 lb JDAMs, AMRAAMs, external fuel tanks, as well as targeting and ECM pods will out-turn or out-accelerate a F-35 with full internal stores? Oh sure you can jettison the bombs and fuel tanks, but good luck completing the mission without the means to do it. No matter how good your fighter you’re not going to be able to out-turn a modern air-to-air missile anyway.

The F-15s built for the air-superiority mission should have been replaced by those several hundred additional F-22s the USAF never got. Maybe somebody should have thought of that before we put an end to F-22 production.

You’re shouting about the CAS exclusive A-10 but you don’t want the F-35 because its primary focus was not the air-superiority mission? How does that make any sense? No aircraft has the same radar cross section from all angles. The closest to that goal would be probably be the B-2, yet both the F-35 and F-22 are considered to have “all-aspect” stealth meaning that the sides and rear do feature as much stealth features and shaping as is practical.

Ground testing with a simulated carrier deck has been going on for some time now with the redesigned tail hook configuration. The F-35C is still scheduled to do the real thing on a carrier sometime later this year.

Big-Dean, we all know the LCS is just a target ship, a decoy sent out to snare the big boys, which can then be torpedoed by a submarine!

I don’t see them cutting back on F-35C’s. As the Hornet Fleet “has” to be replaced ASAP. In addition cut in any model of the F-35. Is just going to drive up the price. So, you can expect to see a great deal of pressure to keep numbers up. Even if something else has to be cut.….….

Nonetheless, just politics. The DOD proposes cut they know Congress will not like. Hoping the latter will come up with more money or at least let them cut what they want.….….

What BS? In case you weren’t keeping track of recent events the F-35 is going forward. It has the support of the DoD, it has the support of Congress, it has the support of the USAF and USMC, and it has the support of most of the industry. You can gnash your teeth and shout all you like but you aren’t going to kill the F-35 program. Flaws and concerns aside they are going to press through with this. That’s the reality and the sooner you accept it the better. Imagining what you could do with the JSF budget is a wasted effort, and without the JSF there is still a huge requirement for new fighters that is going to cost a ton of money no matter how you do the math.

The USAF was always the primary customer and they’re fighting tooth-and-nail for this because they’ve been waiting for new aircraft for over 15 years now. Putting some new gear on F-16s and calling it a day doesn’t cut it. More F-15E+ Eagles are great, but that aircraft isn’t perfect either and you’re never going to afford over 1,000 of them. The USAF needs significant numbers of a next-gen, survivable strike fighter which was what they always wanted to get out of the program. The idiotic decision to end F-22 production hasn’t changed that need.

For the USMC there is no other STOVL option on the horizon and they cannot keep their Harriers operational forever by cannibalizing spare aircraft bought from the UK.

The Navy with their 300-something F-35Cs aren’t going to manage to kill the program. Everybody and their mother knows they aren’t fond of the JSF. They never were going to love the aircraft even if everything went just as planned. The USN has always been just as bad as the USAF when dealing with aircraft designs that aren’t “their own”. Yet it still provides them with capabilities similar to later Super Hornets but with all aspect stealth and better sensors.

Maybe once the F-35A and F-35B are in service and hundreds are being built, maybe once the United States is in a better financial state, maybe then the USN can get out of their “commitment” to the F-35C. Sooner or later they are going to need an aircraft with capabilities beyond either the F/A-18 or F-35.

I happened to be in favor of continuing F-22 production even when everybody was saying how JSF would do it cheaper. I’ve always had concerns about the F-35’s weight and think the government should have been more proactive in ensuring the F-35 met certain estimates and specification. At the time we could reverse course and there were still alternatives to the program. Yet years have passed since then and F-22 production has ended, we’ve invested far more into the JSF and the program is much further along, the Chinese and Russians have both revealed their own 5th generation designs and continue to develop new SAMs. We are quite simply long past the point of no return.

You think I work for Lockheed or something. I do not, nor have I worked for them in the past. Believe what you will but recognizing that there is no alternative at this stage doesn’t earn me a paycheck. Its the job of our government to work out contracts with Lockheed that serve the greater interests of this country. Perhaps they’ve failed with that in the past, but going back to step one won’t fix that.

I challenge any of you idiots down-voting to actually write something. Here is the proof on both of those statements on the F-35C.

Not that anybody seems to care about facts here.

I’m not going to read this. I don’t have time right now.

Good for you.

LM keeps saying that the tests are done, but they never show any footage of them. It’s common knowledge that they have a redesigned hook with a sharper point. It’s also common knowledge that the hook has been able to catch the wire only a few times during the tests. The Navy doesn’t trust them and it doesn’t have confidence in the F-35C. The Navy doesn’t trust the F-35C to consistently do it on an actual carrier and LM would be embarrassed if the F-35C actually tried it on a carrier, which is why the real carrier trials keep getting pushed out. The Navy is trying to delay production so that they can leave the program and buy more Super Hornets. They want out.

They’ve never liked the JSF and never will because it wasn’t their program and doesn’t reflect what they’d like to have out of a next-gen fighter. As for the tailhook the issue will be put to rest one way or another come October.

Sure, cut more existing weapons so we can fund more defense contractor design and development programs. Those have all been so damn successful. First we made 20 B-2s, then 170 F-22s, then probably 0 F-35s if Lockheed continues on their current trajectory. We got 0 GCV’s after 30 years of development, 0 Crusaders but I think that one only lasted a decade and a half. We got 0 upgraded C-130s after a decade and billions of dollars spent. But the good news is, when they lay off all our troops, we won’t need any weapons. Once again the defense budget has the same big winners, the defense contractors. No one controls the Department of Defense like they do.

The good news are what the worst parts (A10 retreat and Tico laid up) of the proposal are unlikely to happen. So fortunately the Congress has saved already two times the Ticonderoga’s how are next to the Carrier the largest and strongest Surface Combatants of the US Navy to be retired and I’m optimistic what especially in an election year the Congress will do the same and not let this madness happen like as the plan to retreat the A10. The A10 is the most successful US Airframes of the last 40 Years, no airframes has saved more US Soldier’s live or killed more enemy’s them the A10 so the A10 has not only proved to be best CAS Platform In Asymmetric environment in Afghanistan and Iraq it has also destroyed during desert storm nearly the entire Iraq Army or better said it has destroyed more enemy targets (vehicles, armored carriers and tank’s) them the rest of the USAF, USN taken together so much to the allegation what the “A10 cannot survive in contested airspace”. To be honest the A10 has better chances to survive in contested airspace them the any Chopper like the AH64, AH1Z, OH-58, UH60 or non-stealthy drone like the MQ1, MQ9, RQ4 or even other legacy platform’s including the B52 just to name a few examples. As I said it is hard to believe for me what the A10 will be completely retreated from service and I hope what I shall be right with this prediction.

One the other Hand not everything is wrong with the Budget request so the LCS (biggest crap ever) look to be capped at 32 Units and it is hard to believe what the Congress will jump in in order to save this swimming madness. It was also very gratifying to hear what Hagel has also ordered a study for a real replace for the Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigates instead of the useless LCS. Everyone how is not completely mentally deranged can see what the LCS is not a combat ship unfortunately it has taken around 10 Years and Billions of wasted money before at last one SecDef has come to the same conclusion.

nah, the LCS will be more like Sir Robin ;-P

The B-1, A-10, F15, F16, F18 and Harrier 2 AV8B are the planes that should put back in full production, BUT the F35, F22, LCS should be mothballed like the stealth fighter. The navy should be forbidden from building new ships or subs but should fix the wonderful ships we have striken before they are sunk or scapped. This equipment is the backbone of our force, and we should create a real reserve of protected equipment and ships, not a pile of junk. We as a nation are doomed, for we have turned against God. So we will keep buying planes that don’t fly yet, and never updating the artillery, anti-aircraft ground equipment, or light armor. We don’t even have a plan if the embedded computer chips we buy have an off function command, or a timer set to shut off on say 9/11/14…lol

P.S. We must not put our faith in computer chips, they always follow the commands of those who make them, and they are made in Asia!!!!

You realize that there will be no production of a world class frigate, right? It will be studied, then cancelled because it is too expensive.

If they want to uparm the LCS, fine, don’t have a problem with that. But studies to build a new frigate will amount to nothing, and no more ships being built, which is what will probably happen.

The flight 3 Burkes and F35’s are going to be expensive as hell and the ballistic missile subs and the ticos start retiring next decade, won’t be a dime to worry about frigates.

Cancelling the F22 screwed everything up. Even if the F35 was on time and met performance it still didn’t make any sense. 187 air superiority fighters is not sustainable. We will have to have more sooner or later.

And you’re right, now the F35 has to be rushed, precisely because the F22 was cancelled. I don’t know what the hell they’re going to do now. There is no way that there is going to be the budget to buy the necessary F35 fighters to replace all the teen series before they start giving out. So if they let the Boeing lines close, we’re going to wind up with like 700 fighters in 10 years. It’s rigodamdiculous.

I think they’re going to have to buy more 4th gen fighters, and work on radar and BVR missile upgrades because I don’t see any other way to get the necessary numbers.

I’m impressed — I’ve never heard of the LCS being referred to as a “bait”, er, “decoy” ship before :-D

Its the only ship in the navy I’ve ever seen bashed so hard by the Navy itself (the Navy Inspector General’s report) — a dubious distinction.

they just laid down (“authenticated”) the 11th hull for LCS. Given its staggering cost and the lousy return for the taxpayers, we should send LockMart a message, rescind ALL funding, and save 1/3 the cost by purchasing (or licensing) a similar (and much better) ship from one of our allies.

If US contractors cannot deliver a decent value to the navy and the US taxpayers — outsource THEIR jobs!

W/r/t the A-10, the guys in the “Chair Force” think that smart bombs will enable them to support the ground cover mission without being anywhere near the ground. And apparently, one of their generals said (whether with a straight face is up for question) that the ~120-round magazine for the gun in JSF is sufficient to replace the 30mm in the A-10 (that carries almost 10 times that).

I would go to a LOT of trouble to keep the A-10’s. Its (comparatively) cheap, scares the bejesus out of the bad guys, and is arguably the most effective ground support weapon in history.

“Army leaders struggled to settle on requirements and costs continued to spiral for the vehicle that didn’t seem to match the Army’s push to become lighter and more agile.“
You could almost say the exact same thing about the F-35 except that it is exponentially more expensive and Hagel is expecting it will replace the A-10 along with other platforms. Tell me Chuck, how many of these do you think you will be able to use to replace the other aircraft when they will cost 10 times or more as much as the aircraft they replace? How many squadrons will you plan to cut so you can supply airframes for those that remain?

For the life of me I just cannot understand why the F-35 is still in exsistance. Can that POS and use the money to refurb or upgrade the Hogs. The AF alwys seems to thing they can provide CAS from 30,000 feet at Mach 1. AINT HAPPENING! The bad guys in the world are very adept at hiding and low and slow is the only way to go in the CAS arena.

Part 1:

The LCS based one the Freedom design can be possible up armed the Independence design instead not. The Study ask for a “capable and lethal small surface combatant, consistent with the capabilities of a frigate” with other Words a Frigate how is at last them you didn’t seek something “revolutionary” like the LCs crap with is Mission Module concept how didn’t work or ask for a 40 kn+ top-speed for a 3,200 ton ship will cost less. A DDG51 cost around 1, 3 Billions this is ok for a destroyer and the Navy should buy 2 per year as planed but the Navy spend also every year around 2 t o3 Billions for 4 completely useless LCS how cost each around 470 Million them all coast are include they cost around 700 Million each and the LCs is not even capable to beat a Chinese patrol boat with is non-existed firepower. The navy operate also around 20 Perry class Frigate’s how lost an important part of their Armament with the retreat of the SM1 and is launch system. So those the DOD stop the purchase of additional LCS crap they will have around 3 Billion each year to buy a real frigate as replace for the Perry Class and to design or to use better to use an existing design will not cost much.
So just for example Lockheed Martin in cooperation with VT Systems (USA) build for the Egyptian Navy a stealthy small surface warship called the “Ambassador MK III class” how is completely build and armed in the United State and cost just 190 Million Dollar each developing cost are included.

Hear the basic characteristics of the Ambassador MK III class:

Displacement: 500 tons
Length 60.6 m, Beam 10 m, Draft 2 m
Range: 2,000 nmi at 17 knots
Crew: 38
8 × RGM-84 Harpoon SSM
1 × General Dynamics/OTO Melara Mk 75 76 mm/62 Super Rapid DP gun
1 × RIM-116 RAM (21 missiles)
1 × Raytheon Phalanx (Block 1B) CIWS
Electronic warfare & decoys:
4 × chaff/IR launchers and an ESM/ECM system from Raytheon

The Ambassador Class is just a patrol boat but is far superior to the 450 to 750 million+ LCS in combat and like the LCS the Ambassador Class is completely build in the USA. So them the Navy just ask for the most advance available design it will easy get a stealthy Frigate from the since of the Perry class armed with Torpedo’s, Harpoon Missile’s a real Gun and VLS Starter for the ESSM for the price of an unarmed LCS (450–750 million). Them you read Hagel’s speech you see what he exactly ask for such a combatant so he said to quote:

Quote from SecDef Chuck Hagel speech:

“””Additionally, at my direction, the Navy will submit alternative proposals to procure a capable and lethal small surface combatant, consistent with the capabilities of a frigate. I’ve directed the Navy to consider a completely new design, existing ship designs, and a modified LCS. These proposals are due to me later this year in time to inform next year’s budget submission.”””

I saw for long time ago before the LCS become the crap what it is a design form Lockheed Martin based one the Freedom Class how Waived the module concept and up-armed the freedom class instead with 12X VLS launcher (for 48 ESSM Missile’s), 8X Harpoon Launchers, 2 triple Torpedo Launchers, a stronger Canon and 2X ASUW Helicopter’s unfortunate the Navy dropped this concept because why one this time the only enemy was Al Qaida and other Insurgent’s how didn’t have combat ships.

Hagel also said before the fallowing in his speech:

“”If we were to build out the LCS program to 52 ships, as previously planned, it would represent one-sixth of our future 300-ship Navy. Given continued fiscal constraints, we must direct shipbuilding resources toward platforms that can operate in every region and along the full spectrum of conflict.””
It looks what he has finally recognized the truth what the LCS is at first complexly useless for War and second what the Navy only hold on to this crap because why it need the hulls to reach there 300 ship goal.

Part 2

With other Words the Navy has a lot of viable cheap options for a real surface combatant like an improved Freedom Class an Up armed National Security Cutter or a new design based one realistic/normal requirements. All US Ally’s build Frigates how are mostly designed in the USA or at last armed with US Weapons and technology some of them are comparable well-armed or even better r them a DDG51. Just to name a few foreign NATO Designs for a Frigate Class ship so simply look one the Norwegian “Fridtjof Nansen-class frigate” or the Danish “Iver Huitfeldt-class frigate” both designs uses nearly complete US technology and weapons and are all armed with VLS 41 launcher’s and 8 to 16X harpoon Missiles and additional Large and Medium Guns like as advance Ram and CIW Systems and Torpedo Launchers as ASUW Helicopters. And they cost all not more them an unarmed LCS!

For example the Danish Iver Huitfeldt-class frigate.

Displacement: 6,645 tonnes (full load)
Length: 138.7 m, Beam 19.75 m, Draft5.3 m
Operational Range: 9,000 nautical miles (17,000 km) at 15 knots
Top Speed: 28 knots+
Crew: 165

Electronic warfare & decoys:
4 × 12-barrelled Terma DL-12T 130 mm decoy launchers
2 × 6-barrelled Terma DL-6T 130 mm decoy launchers Seagnat Mark 36 SRBOC

Armament: 4 x VLS with up to 32 SM-2 IIIA surface-to-air missiles (Mk 41 VLS)
2 × VLS with up to 24 RIM-162 ESSM (Mk 56 VLS)
8–16 × Harpoon Block II SSM
1 × Oerlikon Millennium 35 mm Naval Revolver Gun System CIWS
2 x Otobreda 76 mm
2 × dual MU90 Impact ASW torpedo launchers
Aircraft carried: 1 × Westland Lynx Mk90B from approx. 2016: MH-60R
Aviation facilities: Aft helicopter deck and hangar

Price. Around 600 million dollar!

It has to rush because it is already seven years behind schedule not becuase of the F-22. Seven years!!!!!

We ought to cut all LCSs and keep the A-10s. A-10s are proven and relevent for the types of wars we are most likely to face. The LCS is not.

This gets to another problem with the administration’s strategy: reducing ground troops is just a bizarre decision given that the biggest shortfalls in OIF and OEF were in the ability to provided prolonged land power. Wishing the problem away by saying “we just won’t fight land wars anymore” is insane.

The helicopter, specifically the OH-58 and the AH-64 are the best CAS platforms, hands down. When a soldier calls for air support and the zombie denies the request because of a improper 9 line.….. The the helicopters swoop in and save the day, well you be the judge. I know because I flew those platforms and they have more time over the heads of our brave soldiers than any other platform. Getting on station, remaining for ten minutes then breaking for gas is what I see the Air Force doing.… Just a thought.

“Hagel Proposes Retiring A-10“______________________I hope not. The A10 was built for one thing, to kill tanks.…there is none better at it

Whoa, take ‘er easy there, big fella. There are also many ‘facts’ that support reducing, or even truncating the F-35 production at a number far less than 2,000. There are multiple options that could be pursued in the short term as a bridge to get us to a better strike fighter option long term, but few are being explored outside the USN, and this is frustrating to folks who care about national defense. It’s never an easy decision, but at some point, we’ve got to cut our losses and try to learn from the mistakes made across the board on the F-35 program.

Don’t forget the truckloads of money wasted on VH-71, the Presidential Helo replacement program that got canceled.

Well, I would agree that if they are going to uparm the LCS, then the Freedom is probably the ship to do it with. I don’t agree with you that Harpoon missiles and torpedo bays make a lot of sense for the LCS. Torpedos from a surface ship are pretty useless unless mounted to an ASROC. We haven’t put Harpoons on our Burkes for years, but suddenly people think it is mandatory for the LCS to have them. The lack of ESSM on the LCS is inexplicable to me.

The National Security Cutters cost more than the LCS and carry less armament, so I’m not sure why you are holding that up as an alternative.

The LCS is under armed, that is easily fixable, and in fact part of the LCS concept is to be able to adapt the ship to emerging threats. But the Navy blundered because they let the perception build that this is a worthless ship by not adequately addressing people’s legitimate concerns about the armament.

I’m not opposed to the theory, but the new design world class frigate will never get built. The design stage will drag on, costs will rise, and other priorities will take precedence. So it’s either the uparmed LCS, or nothing in that class.

And how many years behind schedule was the F22. How many years behind schedule was the Eurofighter. The new Chinese and Russian fighters will be behind schedule too.

It always takes longer than initially expected. That doesn’t mean you can fly 40 year old airframes in perpetuity.

I disagree with the all stealth plan the air force has, but I do agree with them that without a significant stealth capability you will be unable to conduct operations in contested space. The SAMs have gotten much better, as have the latest Flankers.

The FACs will work but they can’t self-deploy over very long ranges.

If the Navy hadn’t been stupid and eliminated its destroyer tenders self-deploy wouldn’t be such a critical capability.

I agree with any here the JSF is lousy CAS platform much as how the Pentagon tried this in the mid 1990s with the F-16 a standard fighter bombers is not a true CAS platform we did this in Vietnam and the F-100s, F-104s, and F-105s made lousy CAS planes for troops and so both the the navy and air force used WW2 vintage Skyraiders for this role. The USAF needed a jet platform for survivability reason for Europe and hence the A-10 was born. If you need replace the A-10 get a new CAS platform in service. this Pentagon is going back to 1950s thinking. We don’t need tanks we don’t need CAS aircraft we don’t need to teach dogfighting because instead of missiles now its stealth tech making use do this. Every time we see the idiots in the Pentagon to wake up and say ohh we do need those..

As for the A-10 now I don’t the Senate or House will allow a full A-10 retirement to pass too many congressmen/women and Senators on both parties have states where A-10s are part of either active USAF or USANG units this will be the first part of Heagle’s plan to se shredded.

Word up

In a fight against a near peer, the upgraded F-16s & F-15s can’t survive.

We didn’t buy enough F-22s…now we gotta live and die with the F-35. It is what it is…

Simply transfer the A-10’s to the Army. I’m sure they would love to support them.

Good luck with that in Force on Force warfare.

Can you tell us your experience of why that is so? Just curious.

Gee… I guess that’s an excuse for the F-35C to not work. It has nothing to do with it not being “their program,” whatever that means. It has everything to do with it costing them a lot of money and not delivering a carrier suitable combat ready aircraft.

Suppose the US abandoned F-22 and reinvested the $‘s into a portfolio of new options, including reviving the F-22 line, upgrading the F-15 & F-16, and starting a new joint strike fighter program based on a fresh sheet of paper, more competition, and less ambitious technology development. Suppose then we get into a “fight against a near peer”. Why couldn’t the US attain air to air superiority using the F-22 (holding supposed unsurvivable fighters back from the front line) while destroying the near peer on the ground with stealth bomber & cruise missile attacks?

I think you meant (abandoned F-35 not the F-22)

Hi Jim, the LCS actually are unfortunately not so easy to up armed as you think. Better said only the Freedom Design has the potential to be up armed to the level of a Frigate the Independence design instead not. And this is not all the LCS how are build are not similar to the original armed LCS concept how was larger and also renounced to the modular concept how proved to be good in the theory but crap in the reality. Them you take a look one all planed mission modules for the LCS so you’ll just be able to laugh about what this modules includes so for example the so called “ASuW Module” sets together of just two additional 30mm Canons and a single Launcher for AGM-176 Griffin Missile’s how are a just a bit more powerfully them an Army Javelin Missile and the effective range is also not much greater and this module cost 50 Million. Just to remember a surface launched AGM-176 Griffin Missile has just a range of 3.5 miles or 5, 6 kilometer this is less them the effective range of the 57 mm LCS canon the BAE Systems Mk 11 how has an effective range of at last 8, 5 km. With other Word’s the LCS with ASuW will lose even against a Chinese Missile or Torpedo Boat like the Houbei class how is armed with 8X C-803 Anti-Ship Missiles how have an effective range of up to 280km and also a powerfully AK-630 CIW/Canon and 12 short range Missiles for Air Defense how can easily shut down any helicopter how the LCs can start. And a Houbei Missile boat cost just 50 million dollar and is open for export with Iran as potential customer and this is just an example. And what means the Weapon payload of the National Security Cutter so the NSC is the Superior Design to the LCS because why the NSC is larger, stronger and also High Sea capable the LCS instead is it not. Just look one the basic data about the National Security Cutter in compare to the LCS Freedom and you will see what the NSC has a much larger operational range and higher payload.

National Security Cutter:
Displacement: 4,500 Tons
Length: 127 m, Beam 16 m, Draft 6.9 m
Operational Range: 22,000 km+ at 15 knots
Aircraft carried: 2 x MH-65C Dolphin MCH, or 4 x VUAV or 1 x MH-65C Dolphin MCH and 2 x VUAV

Freedom Class
Displacement: 3,000 Tons (full loaded)
Length: 115 m, Beam 17.5 m, Draft 3.9 m
Operational Range: 6,500 km at 18 knots
Aircraft carried: 2x MH-60R/S Seahawk or 3-4X MQ-8 Fire Scout

Even the Armament of the National Security Cutter how is not like the LCs classified as Combat Ship is comparable to the LCS. So the National Security Cutter has like as the 1 x Bofors 57 mm gun, and 1X CIW (Phalanx) for self-defense.

And what means installed Torpedo’s so I cannot agree with you even the DDG51 how are designed primary for Air defense have fix installed Torpedo Launchers and this despite of the fact what any DDG51 can also launch ASROC Missiles from is 90 VLS Cells. The LCS instead didn’t have a VLS System so at last the option to launch Torpedo’s directly or better said immediately become even more important. A Torpedo remains the weapon of choice in combat against enemy Surface Combatant’s and Submarines a Mark 46 Torpedo for example has an effective range of 10 kilometer+ more them any other weapon of the LCS and them it is installed it can immediately launched against an enemy submarine or surface target. Just for example how useful a Mark 32 can be for the LCS just imagine what your LCS operate in the Persian Gulf and detect an Iranian SSK with the 2X Mark 32 it can immediately attack the SSK with 6X deadly Torpedoes and is high speed make the LCS also a target what the Iranian sub cannot fallow and also not easy attack. But without a Mark 32 Launcher the LCs is forced to start a UH60 with Torpedo’s to attack the Iranian Submarine this can take up to one hour I think the advantage of an installed Mark 32 Launcher is clear.

What means the question of a new frigate so I am optimistic after Hagel comments about the need of a more small capable surface combat ship it is true what the US record them it means to design and build new Weapons is simply disastrous but this is largely the consequence of a mislead accusation program and requirement’s based on ideology. For example the LCS was forced to be the crap what it is only because why the entire US Politic and Military was obsessed by the War on Terror so this lead to totally insane requirements like a top-speed of 40kn and also to the decision to renounce of any real weapon for example the LCS didn’t have a VLS Systems because why Al Ouida and other insurgent’s didn’t have an Air Force or the LCs didn’t have Harpoon Missiles because why the largest part of the Iranians Navy consists of small missile boats the LCS only became the crap what it is because why the navy ignored any threat how goes over the Iranian Navy forth. Them you make realistic request instead like a classic Frigate with the main focus of affordability you will not get cost overruns like the LCS because why the US Industry already produce Frigate Class ships for Foreign Navy’s without cost overruns for example the Israeli Sa’ar 5-class build by Huntington Ingalls Industries in Pascagoula USA.

Hi Sctdvr, the OH-58 and the AH-64 are both great platforms and very effective for CAS but less viable them the A-10 how is the first choice of any Soldiers them it came to CAS and by far the most successfully tank destroyer in Modern History. The A10 has also a greater effective range them any chopper and it is also better armed them any chopper including the AH64, it also cost less money and is easier to maintain and because of is higher speed and is stronger Armor also less vulnerable for enemy Air Defense Systems.

So the A10 effectively operated during desert storm against the Iraqis how there armed with thousands of Manpads like the SA7, SA14 and SA16 and hundreds of heavier SAM Systems and despite of this the loses were very low and some A10 even endure direct hits from MANPADS and can safe home because of their heavy armor and strong flight-cell. Helicopter instead are an easy target for any MANPAD and them they get hit they are dead because of their fragile design.

I can post half a dozen links that talk about how easy it would be to uparm the LCS, both versions. The Indepedence could have ESSM and Harpoon, the Freedom can have up to strike length VLS. That’s from Navy sources and the shipbuilders.

The LCS has griffin not because it can’t have Harpoon, but because it is a low collateral damage missile. The LCS isnt heavily armed because that wasnt requested.

The NSC uparmed will cost probably 50% more than an uparmed LCS. Also, comparing shipbuilding costs from overseas isn’t very helpful. I think the Ambassador Class had a lot of compenentt built in the Baltic States. The specs aren’t the same, labor costs aren’t the same, it’s completely apples and oranges.

The Navy wanted the A/F-X “their way” as opposed to their requirements for a strike aircraft being shoehorned into the JSF program as it was. There is understandably some dislike of the JSF for that reason alone. I presume they really want to get F/A-XX program moving, which will eventually replace the Super Hornet. And based on unofficial remarks it seems there are many Navy types would would gladly sacrifice their F-35C if they think it would help their prospects for F/A-XX. They’re going to have quite a challenge getting the Congressional support and funding they need for that. Such is the wonderful state of our country…

It’s a similar scenario to the TFX and the Navy’s F-111B back in the 1960s. Matters were made worse when Vietnam experience showed the Navy they needed something that could match enemy fighters at short ranges and the F-111B as a very large interceptor wasn’t any good for that.

Hi Jim,

“”“I can post half a dozen links that talk about how easy it would be to uparm the LCS, both versions. The Indepedence could have ESSM and Harpoon, the Freedom can have up to strike length VLS. That’s from Navy sources and the shipbuilders.””

I will be happy to see one single source how claim this. I hear from many people what the LCs cannot be up-armed so easy especially the Independence class. And even them the LCS is not high sea capable like the NSC not to speak about the limited operational range of the LCS and is weak Aluminum hull. I know what at the beginning of the LCS Program three concept arts based one the hull of the Freedom-class there released all three concepts renounce of the “Modular” concept and looked like real warships all three there armed with 8X Harpoon Launchers, 2 × Mark 32 triple torpedo tubes, 1 to 2 CIW Systems and VLS Launcher for ESSM Misses (12 to 48). Unfortunately the concept rejected because why one this time only Asymmetric Warfare was imaginable for the sorry the expression Idiots in the Navy in the Political class so they decided to go forward with the actual 450 to 750 Million crap and is not functioning modular concept. Why they speak about a new US Frigate hear a recent article about the possible designs really interesting.

The National Security Cutter is considered as a promising design hear a quote from the article about the NSC.

“””The Coast Guard is getting up to eight of the 4,500-ton NSCs for open-ocean patrols. More than 400 feet long with a large flight deck, the steel NSCs feature the same 57-millimeter gun as the LCS plus a 20-millimeter defense gun for what is, in essence, a law-enforcement mission.

The patrol frigate version retains the NSC’s hull and powerplant but replaces the small gun with a more powerful 76-millimeter model and also adds 12 vertical missile cells for long-range air-defense and cruise missiles plus quad Harpoon anti-ship missile launchers and torpedo tubes—making the patrol frigate far deadlier than the LCS.

But slower. The LSC can top 40 knots, but NSC practically putters along at just 28 knots. But the slower ship is more efficient. The LCS can sail around 5,000 miles before needing to refuel. The NSC can go 12,000 miles.”””

The Article also said what an up-armed NSC will cost more them a unarmed LCS but let be honest and recognize the simple truth what the actual LCS how coast 670 Million dollar them you include the excluded costs and it has no Mission Module and as said no weapon’s and it is also incapable even to beat a Chinese Torpedo Boat can niot be called a Combat Ship. So an up-armed freedom will cost like a NSC far more them the actual unarmed Hull and as I said it even up-armed it didn’t fix the other shortcomings of the LCS design like is limited high sea-capability and is limited range or the fact what it is has a Aluminum Hull with all terrible consequence them the Ship should be hit by an enemy Missile.

Jim said

The NSC uparmed will cost probably 50% more than an uparmed LCS. Also, comparing shipbuilding costs from overseas isn’t very helpful. I think the Ambassador Class had a lot of compenentt built in the Baltic States. The specs aren’t the same, labor costs aren’t the same, it’s completely apples and oranges.”””

Extremely unlikely because why an unarmed Freedom cost 670 Million a NSC cost 650 to 713 Million. So why should an up-armed NSC cost 50% more them it cost lees or a bit more them an unarmed LCS?

“”“The LCS has griffin not because it can’t have Harpoon, but because it is a low collateral damage missile. The LCS isnt heavily armed because that wasnt requested.”””

Sorry but what sense should have a “low collateral damage missile” in surface combat, should it reduce the collateral damage to the Fish in the water? The reason why the Navy chose the Griffin Missile was the simple fact what it was the only Missile how was small enough to be used instead of the canceled “XM501 Non Line of Sight Launch System” a Missile with an effective range of 40 to 70 kilometer not 5km like the Griffin. ^^

Jim said

“” I think the Ambassador Class had a lot of compenentt built in the Baltic States. The specs aren’t the same, labor costs aren’t the same, it’s completely apples and oranges.””

In the Baltic States ? The Ambassador MK III Missile Boat is build by “VT Halter-Marine” in Virginia USA and them you look on is Systems you will see what the only foreign part is the “Scout (I/J band) radar” build by Thales Nederland. ^^

It is true what the Ambassador Missile boat is much smaller them the LCS but in combat it will easy kill any LCS and it has also a comparable operational range and a higher top speed them the LCS has and it is also more stealthy and has even the Gun is Much larger with 76 mm.

Number I see is 30,000 as to how many battle tanks Rus Fed has on the ground. A-10 seems a poor choice of equipment to give up on as we watch the situation on the border of Ukraine.
It seems that Vladimir Putin would be ecstatic if there were no more A-10 “tank killers”.
If SecDef wanted to cut spending he would have told Obama to bring all US troops out of Central Asia.
Good day.

I would think the key to that strategy is reviving the F-22 line…an option which I’ve never read or heard is even on the table. We simply did not buy enough when we were buying them…the SecDef wanted to win the war(s) he had, not posture for the future. It was a strategic choice at the time, and the DoD is now dealing with the aftermath of that decision. And…your opition still doesn’t make a case for keeping the A-10. The A-10 couldn’t do what you are talking about, nor could it fly air-to-air missions to protect CONUS. The F-16 (or, down the road, the F-35), can do that and CAS. Hence the decision to keep the F-16s and divest the A-10s.

The reality is the F-35 is not going away…in part, the decision to curtail the F-22 buy painted us into a corner. Additionally, we already sold the F-35 to half our friends and allies and we can’t pull the rug out from under those sales.

Not that I’m surprised see this coming since we’ve had roller-coaster ride in the budgets. However, Airforce doesn’t know what its doing with ground-support mission. Give the A-10s to the Marines if they can’t be bothered with tough, survivable and ground hugging plane. Air Force doesn’t care for the A-10 role, i rather see them make new batch OF A-10 in the C variant to keep worry of these planes falling apart. F-35 maybe attack plane, but it doesn’t work very well in this role and can’t stay on station support troops due to ammo and it can’t really stay on station easily enough. Don’t give me crap they’re obsolete against newest generation fighters, that what heck other fighter we spend money is FOR. Air Superiority!!!!

As for the LCS, I’m not surprised either. Navy and Politicians are trying save face on decisions made by people who aren’t around and a foresight of a mission they kept changing. Its everyones fault the LCS two classes are not winning designs. There are some Frigates that can come close to the shore, but not many. We need escort ship, if we need get ships closer. They should adopt the Ambassador design, with a ramp in back like the Cyclones. Firepower and Special Ops, Jack of all trades isn’t best at anything, only able do alot things.

Right, because the next program will be better. I never get tired of hearing that one.

Yes, but there’s nothing to see here. Just move along. There’s no pattern that would suggest any kind of self interest at work at all here. Don’t ask questions. Accept history as rewritten by the defense contractors and not as it happened, even if you did live through it all.

The F-35C must work. The Navy has been giving them 97% of their award fee ever since they were put in charge of JSF 5 years ago. But the next program will be better. Trust the Navy. They f’ed us on LCS. They f’ed us on JSF. But the next one is always better.

There are no cutbacks here. This budget spends billions more than would have been spent had sequestration been allowed to kick in again. It’s not about cuts in anything. It’s about more corporate welfare for the defense contractors at the expense of every other aspect of the military including the troops who are taking cuts in their numbers, salaries, and benefits. Damn, talk about missing the obvious.

The F-35 is a giant piece of expensive crap. It cannot fulfill the role of the A-10 because it simply is too much of a compromise. It is too fast for CAS and does not have the ability to carry the amount of ground attack munitions due to having to keep all its weapons in internal weapons bays. They just need to keep the A-10 on the books and reduce the F-35 to its STOVL variant exclusively.

As for the LCSs, they just need a workable frigate design to replace them with.

And he gets both things wrong yet again — what a shocker. We should be canceling the LCS and updating the A-10; not the other way around. I wonder if he has the Lockheed Martin logo tattooed on his shoulder or something? He is an absolute ass — bought and paid for by big business.


We are sinking and scrapping valuable wartime assets that could be held in reserve for pennies. Dozens of destroyers, small and large aircraft carriers, subs, aircraft like the F-14, F111, B52, and of course A10s. The sinking of the USS America and the current planned destruction of the USS independence is a crime by the ship building lobby, and of course numerous other destroyers, frigates, helicopter carriers, is a waste of our funds. The problem is we must destroy perfectly good equipment to build new more expensive unreliable equipment. This is a pandemic in all US government agencies, and even the forest service buries tons of unused equipment every year just to keep up their budget. Right now we just scrapped over 2000 brand new MRAD vehicles.

America is in imminent danger!

Congress keeps saying that “the United States cannot take its current dominance for granted and needs to invest in the programs, platforms, and personnel that will ensure that dominance’s persistence”, but the truth is America cannot afford to police the entire world. America is in danger of financial collapse, but not because of tax collections but over spending on bloated government programs. I write this not because I don’t support national defense, but because I know that a strong national defense must include a fiscally sound land. Fiscal danger is very real and could cause more damage to our country than any invading army. The world’s greatest civilizations fell not from warfare but from economic collapse. Our out of control spending on domestic programs is only part of the problem. America’s credit rating and her financial condition is threatening our existence. So where is the peace dividends promised to us after each war?

Congress spends 58% of discretionary spending on the military. This does not include hidden expenses such as the NSA, CIA, debt on wars, veteran’s benefits, etc. Because of constitutional limitations, military funding is appropriated in a discretionary spending account. The United States and its close allies are responsible for three-quarters of the world’s military spending. Even without the United States’ contribution the other NATO countries would still be the World’s most predominant and unchallenged military power in existence today. If America decided to step back our Allies would remain unchallenged for many years to come. America has a real enemy our spending. There is a sense around the world that the United States is in terminal decline, and that an economic crisis will crush the United States. Isn’t better to be a sleeping economic and military giant like before WW2, than an impoverished one without a strong industrial complex?

Congress just authorized more money for our nation’s military sighting the very poor condition of military funding. Congress members receive huge political donations from defense contractors. America gives foreign aid to all but three countries in the world and that is Iran, North Korea, and Cuba. But we can’t pay our bills and others like China who still receive our aid now refuse to buy our debts. We are now writing ourselves IOUs to the tune of a trillion dollars a year. Like a drug addict America is addicted to borrowing money and throwing it away at what has now become an unsustainable rate. We have exported almost all manufacturing and now have a 100 million able bodied adults without a job. America is on a suicidal course and the very military vowed to protect it is a trillion dollar liability. In tonnage, the US Navy is larger than the next 13 navies combined and 11 of those are U.S. allies or partner.

Currently no country in the world could pose a challenge or even a substantial threat to our NATO allies in Europe. Our allies in Asia are very powerful and more than a match for any current threats. The greatest threat to America isn’t foreign; ironically the greatest threat is from our own military establishment who like an octopus has tentacles that reach out to every federally elected official. The threat is to the American economy thanks to the unsustainable amount of military spending. If America doesn’t reign in unneeded military expenditures it may cause a complete and total economic collapse just like the Soviet Union had in the nineteen eighties. Rome was once the world greatest military power but gross abuse and economic collapse brought down the world greatest military power. America has been rightly called the new Rome and is currently the worlds great military superpower, not including our incredibly powerful allies.

The Department of Home Land Security has its own aircraft, ships, tanks, armored personal vehicles, and hundreds of thousands of trained men and women under arms. The agencies in DHS includes the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Federal Emergency Management Agency, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Transportation Security Administration, United States Coast Guard, National Protection and Programs Directorate, and the United States Secret Service. DHS has over 240,000 personal and its budget of over $60.8 billion dollars is greater than any single military power in the world spare the USA, Russia, and China. This doesn’t include the state and local law enforcement agencies that employ more than 1,100,000 persons, of which 750,000 are armed police who are trained to be first responders the majority having been through basic.

So in total America has at a minimum 1 million military trained and armed law enforcement personal that serve as first responders throughout the Nation. These combined agencies have a budget greater than all the world nations except for ours, Russia and China. This doesn’t include fire departments, the national Forest Service, the US Park Police, the Department of Energy, the FBI, the CIA, THE NSA, the national reconnaissance office, The ATF and numerous others agencies all who include highly trained first responders. America has millions of retired ex military that are now civilians but still retain combat skills and can be called up in case of war or crisis. Even without the Air Force, Army, Navy, and Marines, an invasion by foreign troops would be met by millions of armed military trained. There is absolutely no threat of invasion from any foreign land, and America even without the four military named above is an armed fortress.

If America mothballed the Army, the Navy, and the Air Force, the Marines could keep America and American possessions safe! Our allies around the world have the situation in hand without our contribution. There is no reason for the United States to intervene in civil wars and foreign conflicts chasing imagined weapons of mass delusion. The Marines are the most efficient military on earth! I have never met a Marine I didn’t like. These folks are America’s finest and have the numbers to defend not only the homeland but our foreign bases. The Army is slow to react and only really useful in all out war. The Air force is spread thin around the world and has proven ineffective in a crisis like September 11th, 2001. The Navy need not deploy unless there is a war, and the Coast Guard can certainly protect our waters. America and the world would have been far better off if we hadn’t intervened in the Middle East spending millions in blood and treasure.

If America stepped back our Allies would increase military expenditures, and US defense firms would be flooded with orders for the latest aircraft, equipment, and US munitions. Why are we paying the bill when we can’t pay our own? If we put an end US interventionism, this would be the best foreign aid package ever offered to the world! Private assistance is more than adequate: No more 50 +++ billion dollar foreign aid giveaways, America doesn’t need to buy influence if we would take back control over access to our markets, the most highly desired prize. We don’t need to deal with warmongers if they are arming to teeth we should cut off trade with them and any country that deals with them. Can you say instant attitude adjustment? The Total of U.S. foreign private assistance and aid is $71.2 billion; Foundations $3.4 billion; Private and Voluntary Organizations (e.g., NGOs) $9.7 billion; Universities and Colleges $1.7 billion; Religious Organizations $4.5 billion; Corporations $4.9 billion; Individual remittances $47.0 billion. Americans send more aid and assistance than any country.

Mothball the three of the five armed services. Send in the Marines to secure and occupied US assets. The marines would be fighting a real threat to America and could easily maintain ships, aircraft, and equipment at very little cost with the money saved from non deployment. Create a ready reserve force like the world has never seen in the history of the world’s military forces, able to react fast adding forces.

So what could be saved if we went ahead and took the peace dividend?:

Army $244.9 billion

Navy $149.9 billion

Air Force $170.6 billion

Defense Intelligence $80.1 billion

Defense Wide Joint Activities $118.7 billion

Total military assistance: $17.8 billion

Total economic assistance: $31.7 billion

Total Reduction $813.7 billion

The Marines are fully capable to take up the fight against economic Armageddon: They are also the predominant military force in the World. Capable of rapid deployment anywhere in the world…

Marine Corps budget is only $29.0 billion

Size 195,000 active and 40,000 in reserves

The Marine Corps accounts for around six percent of the military budget of the United States.

The cost per Marine is $20,000 less than the cost of a serviceman from the other services.

The entire force can be used for both hybrid and major combat operations.

Marines are fully capable of securing America’s homeland and Marine Air has anti ship and air capabilities.

The F18 and Harriers jump jet can easily provide America air cover and self defense.

The Marines are well positioned for fielding more than adequate American self defense force.

Marine attack squadrons fly the AV-8B Harrier II; while the fighter/attack mission is handled by the single-seat and dual-seat versions of the F/A-18 Hornet strike-fighter aircraft. The AV-8B is a V/STOL aircraft that can operate from amphibious assault ships, land air bases and short, expeditionary airfields, while the F/A-18 can only be flown from land or aircraft carriers. Both are slated to be replaced by 340 of the STOVL B version of the F-35 Lightning II, beginning training operations in 2008

The light-attack and light transport capabilities are provided by the Bell AH-1 Super Cobra and UH-1N Huey, which are being replaced by the Bell AH-1Z Viper and the UH-1Y Venom. Medium-lift squadrons flying the CH-46E Sea Knight and CH-53D Sea Stallion helicopters are converting to the MV-22 Osprey tilt rotor with superior range and speed. Heavy-lift squadrons are equipped with the CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter, eventually to be replaced with the upgraded CH-53K.

In addition, the Corps operates its own organic aerial refueling and electronic warfare (EW) assets in the form of the KC-130 Hercules and EA-6B Prowler, respectively. The Hercules doubles as a ground refueller and tactical-airlift transport aircraft. The Prowler is one of only two active tactical electronic warfare aircraft left in the United States inventory, and has been labeled a “national asset”; frequently borrowed along with Navy Prowlers and EA-18G Growlers to assist in any American combat action since the retirement of the Air Force’s own EW aircraft.

The Corps operates the same HMMWV and M1A1 Abrams tank as does the Army, and a number of unique vehicles. The LAV-25 is a dedicated wheeled armored personnel carrier, similar to the Army’s Stryker vehicle, used to provide strategic mobility. Amphibious capability is provided by the AAV-7A1 Assault Amphibious Vehicle, an armored tracked vehicle that doubles as an armored personnel carrier, due to be replaced by the Amphibious Combat Vehicle, a faster vehicle with superior armor and weaponry. The Marine Corps has ordered 1,960 MRAP armored vehicles.

Marine artillery includes the M198 155 mm howitzer, the M777 155 mm howitzer, and the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS), a truck-mounted rocket artillery system. Both are capable of firing guided munitions and more than adequate for the protection of America.

The Marines operate unmanned aerial vehicles: the RQ-7 Shadow and Scan Eagle for tactical reconnaissance.

Marine Fighter Training Squadron 401 (VMFT-401), operates F-5E, F-5F and F-5N Tiger II aircraft in support of air combat adversary (aggressor) training. Marine Helicopter Squadron One (HMX-1) operates the VH-3D Sea King and VH-60N Whitehawk helicopters in the VIP transport role, most notably Marine One. A single Marine Corps C-130 is used to support the U.S. Navy’s flight demonstration team, the “Blue Angels”.

The Marine Corps operates many major bases, 14 of which host operating forces, several support and training installations, as well as satellite facilities. Marine Corps’ bases are concentrated around the locations of the Marine Expeditionary Forces, though reserve units are scattered throughout the United States. The principal bases are Camp Pendleton on the West Coast, home to I MEF; Camp Lejeune on the East Coast, home to II MEF; and Camp Butler in Okinawa, Japan, home to III MEF.

Other important bases include air stations, recruit depots, logistics bases, and training commands. Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms in California is the Marine Corps’ largest base and home to the Corps’ most complex, combined-arms, live-fire training. Marine Corps Base Quantico in Virginia is home to Marine Corps Combat Development Command, and nicknamed the “Crossroads of the Marine Corps”. Marines operate detachments at many installations owned by other branches, to better share resources, such as specialty schools. Marines are also present at, and operate many, forward bases during expeditionary operations. Finally, Marines operate a presence in the National Capital Region, with Headquarters Marine Corps scattered amongst the Pentagon, Henderson Hall, Washington Navy Yard, and Marine Barracks, Washington, D.C

Once we stopped the deficit spending, America could save another 233 billion in interest by buying back the twelve trillion in outstanding bonds with the same QE scheme in which the Federal Reserve is currently financing the whole country, the outstanding 12 trillion could be owned by the Federal Reserve. There is no reason we can’t Altogether America could eliminate it’s budget deficits. America could also eliminate the Department of Education, and other departments duplicated by states. The Federal Government needs a balanced budget Amendment…

War is a useless enterprise; it is far better to negotiate with trade deals!

Let the right to access American consumers be our WMD!

Budget reduced $1,046,700,000,000.00 and deficit gone!

That’s a saving of $3,387.00 for every American per year!

It is raining debt, take the Peace dividend!

We should look into transferring to the JDF a full carrier TF so they can share with the burden in countering the Chinese threats. Further, several squadrons of A-10 could be “sold” to the Philippines at a low cost to help this nation’s defense posture again — against the imminent Chinese threats.

Remember — the Chinese general staff has declared that while the world view them as bully — they view themselves as victim and the high seas and all islands are theirs to take…

War is inevitable…

I agree with you. The F-35 is no where near going to the fleet . The upgraded Hornet is the best in the business for carrier fleet ops. As for the LCS program, both Congress and the Navy Admirals have got a bad case of ‘Mad Cow disease”. They build them and then try to make them what they want. Totally ass backwards!

It is a shame that none of you understand the advantage that this platform affords our military now and in the future.The potential classified capabilities will greatly offset the strategic ASW capabilities that I was part of and has since been dismantled. You will realize it when one of our carriers suddenly is sunk from a platform we will never detect!

The F-35 is fragile like the F22, and B-2 the skin has radar absorbing material that is easily damaged so that very time consuming maintenance is needed that may require the factory. But the B-2 when used exclusively for high value targets can be accommodated. What the armored A-10 achieves no F series jet can or should attempt by getting low and slow around heavy enemy fire as required for close air support in many conflicts. Better to keep the A-10 low and an air cap of F series jets above. Our ability to make war is threatened by greed, and so the A10 is paid off and is no longer a money maker so it must be scrapped. The A10 is simply the best aircraft designed around a gun that flies and destroys tanks at 1% the cost of missiles.

China Checkmate on the Cheap:

What most folks don’t understand is the capabilities offered by underwater mines that turn into homing torpedoes, ground based missiles and surveillance drones. In a recent Rand study the whole problem being presented by China could be easily mitigated by supplying to our friends long range missile systems capable destroying enemies hundreds if not thousands of miles away without leaving ones territory, employing large fleets of ships, planes, or submarines. No ship, sub, nor airplane is undetectable because once these hidden assets are used they are exposed. Underwater mines stay hidden in friendly waters until necessary. And then a command activates them denying both surface and subsurface entry into ones territory. Land based missile systems can be delivered by aircraft and setup within hours. The cost of this approach is less than 1% of conventional equipment.

Land, platform, fixed underwater, or ship based missiles, have no need of near by assets when the ability to connect thru various surface and subsurface networks allows these assets to be positioned in various hidden or fixed underwater positions commanded by a remote location and fed network data. Spending large amounts of money to buy ships, subs, and aircraft to defend a country is unnecessary. It is not necessary to employ large, navies, armies, or air forces to operate such a system. Modern mine fields are negating the need for navies since once activated these become the most terrifying systems ever employed on the sea.

The gun was an equalizer against brute strength, and the new missile, and mine technology will do the same for poor undeveloped countries. When battleships started getting sunk by biplanes with bombs, the battleship became outdated. As long as no central fixed point or location is used to control the network it becomes a hard target. Multiple movable command and control structures and a wide dispersion of weapons can deny and enemy a chance to disable these systems. Central command and control can be replaced as easily as turning on a new smart phone, or other mobile computer system linked to a network.

When missile systems required large radar arrays, and fixed platforms they were easy targets, but now these missiles can be located anywhere in range of the target. As it was demonstrated in the 1st Gulf war with the highway of death where columns of vehicle were destroyed in seconds by helicopter launched missiles, it will be demonstrated in the future where entire fleets of planes, jets, ships, and subs are utterly destroyed in mere minutes by smart weapons not attached to large assets in any way. These systems can be controlled from anyplace on the planet making it impossible for target accusation of control facilities.

We must get smart to survive, and countries like the Philippians could easily become feared and then respected by China overnight if such systems were acquired that could deny usage of the South China Sea for all platforms on demand. Tomahawk, SM-3, advanced Harpoon missiles are now even old technology compared to new systems. Defending planes, jets, ships, and subs against networked missile systems is expensive, dangerous, and outright useless in saturation attacks. A country who can deny China’s sea lanes is a country that shall be a friend of China with a peace treaty in hand. We have to Get Smart!

Some day off the shelf missile technology will be so cheap that the existence of the most expensive systems will be threatened! It will be possible for any country to employ defenses on the cheap against lopsided confrontations where a larger aggressor must sue for peace or find covert ways to defeat even smaller weaker opponents. There will always be David and Goliath…

correct thanks

The reality is the F-35 is dependent upon an annual appropriation by Congress and signed by the President. There is no reason to presume its survival if it does not deliver on its promises.

Bravely bold Sir Robin rode forth from Camelot.
He was not afraid to die, O brave Sir Robin!
He was not at all afraid to be killed in nasty ways,
Brave, brave, brave, brave Sir Robin!
He was not in the least bit scared to be mashed into a pulp,
Or to have his eyes gouged out, and his elbows broken;
To have his kneecaps split, and his body burned away;
And his limbs all hacked and mangled, brave Sir Robin!

His head smashed in and his heart cut out
And his liver removed and his bowels unplugged
And his nostrils raped and his bottom burned off
And his pen–

“It always takes longer than initially expected”. Nope. Only in screwed up programs. Taxpayer should not have to expect incompetence. Also as far as your argument about stealth, why is the F-22/B-2 force not a “significant stealth capability” and why do you not factor in long range standoff attack, SEAD, and even cyber & special ops capabiltieis into the equation?

Petition the White House to disapprove this request: http://​wh​.gov/​l​E​IMJ

We need to make our military stronger and keep it that way @ all times ! We have gangs out on streets need be enlistedso they can take care of their baby mama,the only cut back around here is needed in Hegel’s pocket and he should put out of our country with no way back.a question to ask him is why ? Why is he so set on cutting back out military ?


NOTE: Comments are limited to 2500 characters and spaces.

By commenting on this topic you agree to the terms and conditions of our User Agreement

AdChoices | Like us on , follow us on and join us on Google+
© 2015 Military Advantage
A Monster Company.