That recent Pentagon budget-cutting plan

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delvo

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Unread post03 May 2014, 03:13

I've seen a couple of threads here and there talking about the budget plan eliminating A-10s and not touching F-35s, but not much else comes up except the A-10 thing. In one other thread somewhere around here, I thought I saw someone say the same plan also kills the B-1s. That was a big surprise to me. What else is in there and where's it all laid out?
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lookieloo

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Unread post03 May 2014, 03:56

It was some months ago that the USAF laid-out what sequestration was putting at-risk. Fleets on the block are A-10, B-1B, KC-10 and F-15C. In that order, they will be sacrificed to protect F-35, KC-46, and LRS-B.
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delvo

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Unread post05 May 2014, 03:21

lookieloo wrote:Fleets on the block are A-10, B-1B, KC-10 and F-15C. In that order, they will be sacrificed to protect F-35, KC-46, and LRS-B.
The A-10/F-35 issue gets talked about a lot, here and elsewhere. I can see the reasons for dropping F-15C easily enough, and the fact that I don't know how to pick one tanker over another means I can't be confused by one choice there because I wouldn't have expected another. :D

But with the bombers, I'm not getting why they picked B-1 to drop instead of B-52. I thought this was a cost-driven decision, and B-1 costs less to operate. I can understand cutting the cheaper one if the more costly one has some tactical advantage, but in this case, they're keeping the one that not only costs more to operate but also has higher RCS, less speed & altitude, slightly less internal payload, and no external payload at all. The only thing I know of that looks better about it is range, and the difference is pretty marginal there. So what else is it? Just cutting the one that there are about 10 fewer of so you have 10 more left over than you would if you cut the other one? :-?

It's a bit ironic to see, in the debate about A-10s, people bringing up CAS done by B-1s as an example of how CAS is really done and why it doesn't require A-10s, when the very same document that suggests ditching A-10s also suggests ditching B-1s. :D
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sferrin

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Unread post05 May 2014, 03:34

lookieloo wrote:It was some months ago that the USAF laid-out what sequestration was putting at-risk. Fleets on the block are A-10, B-1B, KC-10 and F-15C. In that order, they will be sacrificed to protect F-35, KC-46, and LRS-B.


B-1Bs, KC-10s, and F-15Cs aren't going anywhere. They'll be lucky if they can even get rid of the U-2s and A-10s. (Not that I have an opinion one way or another on those. Money is tight and any decision is gonna suck.)
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delvo

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Unread post05 May 2014, 04:04

Well, it's not USAF or the Pentagon trying to cut costs against the will of someone else like Congress; it's Congress ordering them to. So who's going to prevent them from doing it?
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lookieloo

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Unread post05 May 2014, 09:22

delvo wrote:
lookieloo wrote:Fleets on the block are A-10, B-1B, KC-10 and F-15C. In that order, they will be sacrificed to protect F-35, KC-46, and LRS-B.
The A-10/F-35 issue gets talked about a lot, here and elsewhere. I can see the reasons for dropping F-15C easily enough, and the fact that I don't know how to pick one tanker over another means I can't be confused by one choice there because I wouldn't have expected another. :D

But with the bombers, I'm not getting why they picked B-1 to drop instead of B-52. I thought this was a cost-driven decision, and B-1 costs less to operate. I can understand cutting the cheaper one if the more costly one has some tactical advantage, but in this case, they're keeping the one that not only costs more to operate but also has higher RCS, less speed & altitude, slightly less internal payload, and no external payload at all. The only thing I know of that looks better about it is range, and the difference is pretty marginal there. So what else is it? Just cutting the one that there are about 10 fewer of so you have 10 more left over than you would if you cut the other one? :-?

It's a bit ironic to see, in the debate about A-10s, people bringing up CAS done by B-1s as an example of how CAS is really done and why it doesn't require A-10s, when the very same document that suggests ditching A-10s also suggests ditching B-1s. :D
Here's the thing... it's also about fleet-size. Supporting a given type also means supporting an infrastructure, and eliminating said infrastructure is where the real long-term savings can be made. Ergo, the smaller fleets in a given role for which there is more than one type are likely to get chopped, even if the individual aircraft are cheaper/more advanced than their counterparts. For example, KC-10s are newer and more-capable than KC-135s, but since the fleet is smaller, it makes more since to do away with their support and keep the old stratotankers until such time as KC-46 enters service.

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