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jice last won the day on June 19

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About jice

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  1. [Last post from me in this derail, I really do appreciate the contrasting view and recognize that it’s an unpalatable and unpopular view]: We don’t have to actively threaten now with a massive buildup; a long term presence is the threat. Well aware that the current posture doesn’t provide options in a peer threat war. But! When we leave, Beijing will be there ($50 says Xi or his successor shows up for a high profile visit within 24 months after the last US troops are out) and they’ll have zero concerns about immediate instability. They will be looking 50 years down the [belt and] road and won’t harbor any illusions of helping the people or government of Afghanistan. (Except as required to manipulate the people and government of Afghanistan). Not leaving means we tell China that we recognize their game and aren’t going to let them walk East and west simultaneously. Here’s a picture of the Shanghai Cooperation organization. Members in Green, Observers in Blue (Afghanistan included). It isn’t getting any smaller. It contains most of the people on earth and by 2040, potentially most of the GDP on earth.
  2. (Funny you should say that; lots of folks saying the Chinese play go while we play chess). The Chinese know we’re all more familiar with chess than go. They’re playing a very different game. I’d say that if it forces the adversary to consider a wholly different axis than the one they’ve been absolutely dominating (the Western Pacific) that it isn’t a waste. They are clearly facing East WRT the US, currently and aspirationally. No (though we’ve likely all already played that game before). I’m saying that ceding influence and control in the ‘Stans forces us to look at China from the direction they’d like us to see them from. I’m not saying that we need to continue combat operations in Afghanistan at all. I’m saying that the pressing problem of our time is a rising China. We should make decisions based on what we need in 2040, not what would have been prudent in 2003. No disagreement with the first point here. Losing people senselessly is a horrible thing. Again, not advocating for continued combat operations or any aspiration of fixing Afghanistan. Fock ‘em... I just need to be able to plop aircraft, weapons, tanks, tankers, and Americans with Rifles in a place that lets me get to China’s western frontier quickly. If we’re doing distributed basing in your country from MOLs in Afghanistan, your pacific A2AD becomes a neat prize at the end of the war. Unpopular, I know, but being in Afghanistan doesn’t have to be about Afghanistan.
  3. I think anybody who grew up playing Go would disagree.
  4. I understand the sentiment, but is having an enduring presence in an “unconquerable” land that borders China in the West worth (some) blood and treasure? Maybe even some embarrassment in negotiations?
  5. Had a contrasting experience. Learned a lot about the folks I work with. Never thought about a lot of what was discussed. A number of people brought to tears with a significantly poignant story. Overheard one of the staunch “the best way to end this problem is not to discuss it” people tell the person who organized the training “thanks, I’m glad we had this talk; I think I need to listen more.” We didn’t have a 100% talking rule and attendance/tracking was intentionally obfuscated... and by that I mean we definitely had 100% attendance to meet the mandate.
  6. Totally agree with you. I’m skeptical of the rationale that’s being repeated in this thread re: the justification behind an “America Class.” No offense intended to student pilots, but has anybody in a position to speak to the decisionmakers’ rationale provided insight? “Checking washout rates” seems like a massive misunderstanding of social science and statistics or something coercive with subversively racist intent. (I have faith the latter isn’t the case and hope the former isn’t either... though “no class As for X years!... don’t notice all the Bs and Cs” doesn’t build confidence.) In any case, @brabus’s comment is a perfect reason that we shouldn’t let anybody (to include the young guns at work) see us roll our eyes at the seemingly clumsy and overtly progressive “first all XYZ ABC” stories. Those are exactly the reactions that give people confidence in saying “it’s going to be harder for you; don’t bother.” The only ones with actual SA are us.
  7. @12xu2a3x3 Data is ~6 years old; take it for what it’s worth. Wichita Falls has no shortage of old, kind of shitty, but super cheap apartments in the old downtown area (12 minutes to base). You could pick one up for less than $700 a month back in 2014. Some for less. It’s also the closest piece of civilization to some extraction operations (though not as booming as Midland/Odessa can be when the price of oil goes up), so long-term rentals at campgrounds are fairly common. (Good luck buying a camper at the moment though; COVID has made that market go crazy.) If you want to commute, having a place in WF is doable on a budget, and you could probably work the schedule so that you can spend one or two weeknights at home regularly during the week.
  8. This. Especially this when viewed through the recruiting lens you mention above. Right now we end up with officers populating the support world who joined in response to a call to be great leaders of men, to be warriors different than the corporate world, to be basically special operations desk pilots... meanwhile, people with a genuine interest in HR go to work at FedEx (or some other highly rated HR department in a company larger than the Air Force.) I’d way rather have somebody interested in the work than somebody interested in achieving some perverted model of self-actualization that requires special military attributes of office work.
  9. Well, yeah. I mean... notice the date on that post? That “good stuff” wasn’t about the FORMER wing commander... 🙃
  10. That thought process is still happening; the bros did a good job of weeding it out at the interviews. Any U-2 pilot worth a sh1t is a proud UCD-wearing recce professional, not somebody looking to use it as a stepping stone.
  11. If you’re talking tactical integration, it should happen outside this type of relationship at the USAFWC. For administrative relationships: I’m all for the flattest organization possible, but in this particular case I don’t think the MAJCOM the right answer. Let’s be real: ISR is always going to be a red-headed stepchild in ACC. BUT ALSO! More important than being the center of attention, ISR needs to be responsive to the needs of ACC. (Why it makes sense to live there.) That said, having the 25th Air Force provides a balance. The two star has a seat at tables that ISR (now cyber and EA as well) wouldn’t otherwise occupy, and ACC can still make demands of their subordinate org in an absolute sense. (Rather than making it a MAJCOM/DRU unto itself.) Now! If we really wanted to make a better structure, we’d dissolve the 480th ISRW and align its component parts with the collectors and customers. That, or suddenly pluck all WSOs up into their own wing with their own rules, own schedules, and admire why B-52s, B-1s, F-15Es, and the rest are suddenly not able to employ effectively. Ever shown up in the mission area an hour after takeoff only to discover that most of your airplane’s crew is out hiking 1,400 miles away?
  12. There’s also value in NAFs that own missions that are inseparable but distributed across multiple organizations. DCGS & U-2 under the 16th AF (formerly 25th). Having a CC to slap the table with force of law (who isn’t shouldering the the MAJCOM/CC role) is important That said: in that case in particular (and I’d suspect in most cases in general), why the fvck are we organized so that two parts of the same machine (front and back end of a system) only touch at the NAF and on operational sorties?
  13. And also don’t be a dickhead. We’re equally guilty of being ignorant and often more guilty of believing that we’ve earned that right.
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