Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Good Bye to a real Monster, and sanity.

Anybody who knows me will tell you I am a pacifist. I feel that we can end war, or war can end us, and there is no path down the middle. Society has reached a point of diminishing returns for combat. For a long time war could be a very profitable enterprise for nations,* at least the nations that won. It was always hell for the soldiers, but the greater good and all, you know.

And, an article from Defense One concerning the retirement of the A10 Warthog Attack Aircraft adds a new reason for the feeling of hopelessness.

According to reports from several sources the relatively slow moving, heavily armored A10 used in close support of combat troops offers a great deal of protection, and "influences adversaries" mostly by killing them. Which is the best way to influence enemy combatants.

Warthogs have had a long, illustrious career, and influenced the outcome of many battles from the
Balkans to Afghanistan to Iraq and Syria.

But, the Air Force, in true military fashion, apparently feels the clunky appearance and unappealing lines of the A10 are not consistent with the style needs of the modern armed forces.

Instead, they have invested in the F35 Close Air Support fighter plane. Here is shocking news, It is wildly over budget, and does not seem to work as well as hoped. But, it is a much sleeker looking aircraft, guaranteed to impress the ladies.

Actually, that is only a small joke, the Armed Services do not appropriate weapon systems to find girls. That would be silly. But, a high ranking officer in the pentagon can find a nice retirement plan as a consultant for a wealthy defense contractor if they play their cards right.

Conversely, an officer could face serious repercussions if the extravagant weapon systems they advocated so adamantly turns out to be a huge, expensive waste. Well, only if they admit it is a huge, expensive waste. Reality is only a matter of admission in weapons procurement.

If you look at the amount of armaments available to people who are making decisions based on anything but the facts the future looks very dim.

*The lyrics from Queen and Country by Jethro Tull;

"They build schools and they build factories
From the spoils of battles won"

are dripping with artistic sarcasm, but historically accurate,