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This program is never gonna happen.  The AF will keep kicking the can down the road until Congress gives up

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2 hours ago, YoungnDumb said:

This program is never gonna happen.  The AF will keep kicking the can down the road until Congress gives up

Luckily for us the 2x A-29s to AFSOC and the 2x AT-6s to ACC have already been purchased.  
 

As for AFSOC Armed Overwatch, it’s a SOCOM initiative and not USAF, so they’ll be no “kicking the can down the road”.

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We've bought a whole 2 of them...cool.  How long did it take to get this far?  Whether it is a SOCOM operation or not this project is years delayed and will get so mired in more red tape that it will never reach full potential/operation.  I foresee the AF sticking its hand in the acquisition of the jets and slowing it to a crawl eventually forcing its cancellation.

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1 hour ago, YoungnDumb said:

We've bought a whole 2 of them...cool.  How long did it take to get this far?  Whether it is a SOCOM operation or not this project is years delayed and will get so mired in more red tape that it will never reach full potential/operation.  I foresee the AF sticking its hand in the acquisition of the jets and slowing it to a crawl eventually forcing its cancellation.

The 2x A-29s purchased for AFSOC have nothing to do with the SOCOM Armed Overwatch purchase.  
The A-29s are for CAA training.

 

You are right though, the 2x A-29s have taken way too long and the funding got cut down to only enough for the purchase of 2 of them.  

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The 2x A-29s purchased for AFSOC have nothing to do with the SOCOM Armed Overwatch purchase.  
The A-29s are for CAA training.
 
You are right though, the 2x A-29s have taken way too long and the funding got cut down to only enough for the purchase of 2 of them.  


Hate to break it to you guys but any and all desire at this point to spend money on this will die in approx 12-14 months.

Afghanistan is over. The primary customer for this aircraft requirement is done doing missions. Every day that continues you move further and further from your single biggest example of justification.

Nobody will care about building this capability for the next mired quagmire war. All the focus will go right back to the big war thinking and acquisitions and the best we can hope for is somebody saves all these power point briefings on a drive somewhere and is in the CSAF and others office on Day 1 of the occupation and rebuild in Venezuela/Sudan/whatever banging it into their heads we can’t afford to consume the F35 fleet flying it around for 10 years doing XCAS against Toyota’s with PKMs on them.


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5 hours ago, Lawman said:

 


Hate to break it to you guys but any and all desire at this point to spend money on this will die in approx 12-14 months.

Afghanistan is over. The primary customer for this aircraft requirement is done doing missions. Every day that continues you move further and further from your single biggest example of justification.

Nobody will care about building this capability for the next mired quagmire war. All the focus will go right back to the big war thinking and acquisitions and the best we can hope for is somebody saves all these power point briefings on a drive somewhere and is in the CSAF and others office on Day 1 of the occupation and rebuild in Venezuela/Sudan/whatever banging it into their heads we can’t afford to consume the F35 fleet flying it around for 10 years doing XCAS against Toyota’s with PKMs on them.


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Hate it to break it to you but there are other AORs that SOCOM and AFSOC have been working in and concentrating on other than Afghanistan that Big Blue hasn’t even really cared about (I.e, AFRICOM)...

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Hate it to break it to you but there are other AORs that SOCOM and AFSOC have been working in and concentrating on other than Afghanistan that Big Blue hasn’t even really cared about (I.e, AFRICOM)...

 

And we are closing out that show too...

 

You act like there is an assumption we will just take the billion dollar deployments of units from the Stan and CENTCOM and transplant that to PI, African, etc... If it didn’t justify assets yesterday it won’t suddenly get the billion dollar stack we’ve become too accustomed too in recent years. We are broke, we are tired, we have to reset the military and buying stuff that would have been useful 12 years ago for a fight we are leaving isn’t going to be a big hit on the hill. It will lose its fight when people are asking to replace 25 year old armored vehicles or upgrade/replace a 45 year old 707 series of support aircraft that will be critical to a near peer fight.

 

If your operation doesn’t justify all the help from ARSOA, U-28s, and AC-130s right now yet their mission still goes on, you’re crazy if you think there will suddenly be a JUONS that justifies AFSOC buying a bunch of light attack. Outside AVFID there is no and will be no appetite to put this thing to work. We are scaling back our SOF footprints because we desperately need too so what mass customer demand do you think is going to demand this, because they are the reason for its existence.

 

 

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28 minutes ago, Lawman said:

 

And we are closing out that show too...

 

You act like there is an assumption we will just take the billion dollar deployments of units from the Stan and CENTCOM and transplant that to PI, African, etc... If it didn’t justify assets yesterday it won’t suddenly get the billion dollar stack we’ve become too accustomed too in recent years. We are broke, we are tired, we have to reset the military and buying stuff that would have been useful 12 years ago for a fight we are leaving isn’t going to be a big hit on the hill. It will lose its fight when people are asking to replace 25 year old armored vehicles or upgrade/replace a 45 year old 707 series of support aircraft that will be critical to a near peer fight.

 

If your operation doesn’t justify all the help from ARSOA, U-28s, and AC-130s right now yet their mission still goes on, you’re crazy if you think there will suddenly be a JUONS that justifies AFSOC buying a bunch of light attack. Outside AVFID there is no and will be no appetite to put this thing to work. We are scaling back our SOF footprints because we desperately need too so what mass customer demand do you think is going to demand this, because they are the reason for its existence.

 

 

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It’s not AFSOC purchasing these aircraft, I’ve mentioned that 6-9 times already!

It’s SOCOM purchasing them and mostly being flown by AFSOC.  SOCOM doesn’t want another Niger incident and the OADs operating in Africa want and need more support.  

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21 hours ago, Lawman said:

Hate to break it to you guys but any and all desire at this point to spend money on this will die in approx 12-14 months.

Afghanistan is over. The primary customer for this aircraft requirement is done doing missions. Every day that continues you move further and further from your single biggest example of justification.

Nobody will care about building this capability for the next mired quagmire war. All the focus will go right back to the big war thinking and acquisitions and the best we can hope for is somebody saves all these power point briefings on a drive somewhere and is in the CSAF and others office on Day 1 of the occupation and rebuild in Venezuela/Sudan/whatever banging it into their heads we can’t afford to consume the F35 fleet flying it around for 10 years doing XCAS against Toyota’s with PKMs on them.

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I hear your point but after nukes were used people asked why we needed a Navy anymore too, those people were wrong and assumed what had happened before would never come again so let's dump all that stuff, we saw actually it was likely to happen again so we better keep what worked, improve it and realize we don't get time off from defending our interests and fighting our enemies.

Some GO will have to break the facts of life to Puzzle Palace and the Hill that a lot of the world is completely messed up, teetering on disaster and that intervening is sometimes the least bad option.

With the recognition of those three facts, you will need an appropriate portion of your military suitably organized, trained and equipped to fight in such interventions in effective, efficient and sustainable ways.  A manned aerial platform capable of ISR and Strike with other attributes such as endurance, flexibility and reliability will be required as part of the military component of a Whole of Government approach.

Obviously I have to push for the Scorpion with a propaganda photo because that's my job on BO.net but it's what we really need for this:

19be74f04e398e5e1bae10d3e935ae05.jpg

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On 3/18/2020 at 10:02 AM, Tank said:

SOCOM doesn’t want another Niger incident and the OADs operating in Africa want and need more support.  

Certainly seems like Advisory forces are the future, but I just don't see how getting extra A-29s helps the OADs' missions. Sure, the 2 they have right now will be used for training the CAAs, but unless we start exporting Tucanos to Niger and other PNs that don't already have an Air Force, we won't be able to use them in support of any Advisory mission. The whole idea is to assist existing military forces, not bring our own military in under the pretense of advising, like we did in Viet Nam.

I mean, Army SF can get away with operating in PNs, but it's a lot harder to hide what you're doing when you've got your roundel on a gray aircraft.

 

On 3/18/2020 at 9:31 AM, Lawman said:

We are scaling back our SOF footprints because we desperately need too so what mass customer demand do you think is going to demand this, because they are the reason for its existence.

The A-29 is for the 6th SOS.

Quote

The A-29 Super Tucano is to be used at Hurlburt Field, Florida, by Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) to “develop an instructor pilot program for the Combat Aviation Advisory mission, to meet increased partner nation requests for light attack assistance”.  [Emphasis mine]

Currently, there are fourteen Air Forces that use the A-29. Considering how the 6th is doubling in size, and how they have acquired the aircraft that at least 6 friendly Air Forces currently operate, and PNs are literally asking for help with the A-29, it's blatantly obvious that there's ALREADY 'mass customer demand' for Tucanos.

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Posted (edited)
On 3/22/2020 at 12:59 AM, Jayhawker said:

Certainly seems like Advisory forces are the future, but I just don't see how getting extra A-29s helps the OADs' missions. Sure, the 2 they have right now will be used for training the CAAs, but unless we start exporting Tucanos to Niger and other PNs that don't already have an Air Force, we won't be able to use them in support of any Advisory mission. The whole idea is to assist existing military forces, not bring our own military in under the pretense of advising, like we did in Viet Nam.

I mean, Army SF can get away with operating in PNs, but it's a lot harder to hide what you're doing when you've got your roundel on a gray aircraft.

Many North African countries such as Nigeria, Tunisia, Kenya, Bakino Faso, Mauritania, etc. are receiving a light attack aircraft variant via Foreign Military Sales or a direct purchase to either replace their aging fighter aircraft (F-5, Alpha Jet) or to obtain the new capability.  
 

The plan is to train, advise, and assist these countries and not bring our own militaries aircraft to support them but use theirs.  
 

Armed Overwatch (not the 2x A-29s) is a plan to directly support the U.S. OADs in these third world countries where there are no 4th and 5th gen fighters and where we as the U.S. are presently requiring the support of other countries (such as France in Niger).  

Edited by Tank

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3 hours ago, Tank said:

Armed Overwatch (not the 2x A-29s) is a plan to directly support the U.S. OADs in these third world countries where there are no 4th and 5th gen fighters and where we as the U.S. are presently requiring the support of other countries (such as France in Niger).

Well it's really not surprising that they can't get what they need, considering they're such a small community, but I'm surprised that it's still taking this long for a mission that's so necessary. By all metrics this should've already been a done deal, but methinks the fighter mafia in upper leadership feels threatened by a VERY SMALL SOF community wanting planes that aren't priced in the hundreds of millions of dollars

I can't imagine how all the advisors feel looking at all of this

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6 hours ago, Tank said:

Armed Overwatch (not the 2x A-29s) is a plan to directly support the U.S. OADs in these third world countries where there are no 4th and 5th gen fighters and where we as the U.S. are presently requiring the support of other countries (such as France in Niger).  

So for that US Mil asset, would it / could it have a different set of requirements that would necessitate a different / better platform than the Advisor Mission?

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29 minutes ago, Clark Griswold said:

So for that US Mil asset, would it / could it have a different set of requirements that would necessitate a different / better platform than the Advisor Mission?

Yes

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1 hour ago, Tank said:

Yes

tenor.gif

Cool, likely something in the low range of 0.69% for what General Clark Griswold would want (Scorp with some upgrades like rough field mods, capability to hold a mil radar for the nose/ install a fixed AR probe / RWR & ECM if threat requires it, BLOS, Link 16, etc..) but make your case where you can.

I'm thinking that Grey Zones are going to be where COIN / LIC conflicts will be in 20's and beyond.  Russia, maybe China throwing their weight around in proxy fights to stymie Western powers when they intervene.  Venezuela, further Libya adventures, Eastern Ukraine, Africa, etc... as examples where state collapse, semi-governance with VEOs, Proxy Militias rising and requiring suppression before the fire gets out of hand

Platforms (manned/unmanned) will need to be able to initially defend / scram if the MiGs, Flankers, SAMs, etc... nearby decide to take it next level.

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On 3/23/2020 at 5:13 PM, Clark Griswold said:

Russia, maybe China throwing their weight around in proxy fights to stymie Western powers when they intervene.  Venezuela, further Libya adventures, Eastern Ukraine, Africa, etc... as examples where state collapse, semi-governance with VEOs, Proxy Militias rising and requiring suppression before the fire gets out of hand

As far as I'm aware, that's pretty much the whole purpose of FID missions. Getting an actual squadron of A-29s or AT-6 is obviously really hard, though.

Although, I went digging into the NDAA FY2020 and found this:

http://puu.sh/FoYuJ/70b264915c.png

With Gen Brown being up for CSAF next, I'd say chances are looking good

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3 hours ago, Jayhawker said:

....

With Gen Brown being up for CSAF next, I'd say chances are looking good

I hope you're right and I agree on the importance of teaching a man to fish / firing a hellfire into the right truck is one of the missions we (the USAF) need to perform with a light attack aircraft, I'm just a hopeless believer that we need our own advanced light attack aircraft to prosecute missions ourselves when we need to do the job ourselves.

Our requirements are likely to be higher than our partners and hence our platform would likely be more expensive than a single engine turbo we would train them on and perhaps use in some other missions (training, some ops, testing, etc...).

Being the broken record I am, the Scorpion is the best example I've seen for this requirement I believe exists but no COCOM is stating exists, damn it...

Now really venturing into shit that will never happen, a modified Gripen would also be a candidate to fulfill this hypothetical requirement but yours truly would change it ala how the the A-7 was derived from the F-8... redesigned wing, different engine, avionics changes, etc... a new aircraft but closely related to the fighter it was modified from.  It has some unique attributes that would enable it I think to be feasibly modified for this hypothetical role, particularly the mission architecture, flight and mission functions are separated (like the Scorpion) so you can modify your war-fighting systems without monkeying around with your basic flight systems, genius.

I'd change the engine for a non-afterburning higher bypass motor, CFTs for more range/endurance, wing mods if possible for improved endurance / low loiter speeds, avionics/sensors focused on the ground attack / ISR mission but still capable of A2A, principally self-defense, etc... more more capes than a light turbo, way less expensive than a fighter and still has a light foot print for expeditionary / dispersed ops.  

This requirement has never happened as ACC has never liked the idea for some legitimate concerns and some bullshit ones IMHO.  AFSOC has supported the program but doesn't have the horsepower of ACC.  So meet in the middle-ish and buy a platform that is more expensive at acquisition but still inexpensive to operate over its service life and is a compromise both can learn to love.

AFSOC (by extension SOCOM) gets a platform to deliver ISR, Fires and is light and flexible for their mission and expeditionary needs.  ACC gets an affordable, relevant, modern attack platform that can fight in contested environments and is affordable enough to purchase in quantity.  

Edited by Clark Griswold

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