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[Washington Babylon]

F-22 Ready for Action, Sort Of

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Make sure to read the terrific op-ed in Sunday’s Fort Worth Star-Telegram on the massive boondoggle otherwise known as the F-22 fighter. The article is co-authored by James Stevenson, Winslow Wheeler, and Pierre Sprey–Sprey being the world’s greatest warplane designer/Pentagon critic/jazz and blues record producer. They write:

On Dec. 12, the Air Force announced with considerable fanfare at Langley Air Force Base in Virginia that its F-22 fighter had reached “full operational capability.” Air Combat Command commander Gen. John Corley called it a “key milestone.” Brimming with pride, a spokesman for the manufacturer, Lockheed, stated: “The F-22 is ready for world-wide operations”–and then added, “…should it be called upon.”
His afterthought makes the point: There are, of course, two wars going on, and the F-22 has yet to fly a single sortie over the skies of Iraq or Afghanistan. Nor has the Air Force announced any intention of sending the F-22 to either theater. The Air Force is quite right to keep the F-22 as far as possible from either conflict. The airplane is irrelevant to both, and were it to appear in those skies, it almost certainly would set U.S. and allied forces back.

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