The U.S. Air Force Has a New War Plan
The U.S. Air Force is rewriting its war plan for the Pacific, the flying branch’s new commander for the region told reporters at the Pentagon in late November 2018. Gen. Charles Brown, commander of Pacific Air Forces, said he wants smaller groups of U.S. warplanes to rapidly move between... Read more
The Grim Rationale for U.S. Air Force ‘Elephant Walks’
On Nov. 19, 2018, two U.S. Air Force wings in Utah launched 35 F-35 stealth fighters in a short span of time. The Air Force lauded the display as evidence of America’s overwhelming military might. At least one critic dismissed it as a publicity stunt. In fact, there’s one... Read more
U.S. Air Force Picks New Stealth Bomber Bases
The U.S. Air Force is getting bases ready for its new B-21 Raider stealth bomber. But it’s still unclear how many B-21s the flying branch might buy. The Air Force selected Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma as the main maintenance facility for the new bomber, the service announced... Read more
No, the Russian Su-57 Stealth Fighter Isn’t Superior to the American F-22
Russia’s Su-57 stealth fighter is a more versatile and a better ground-attacker than America’s own F-22 is, one of Russia’s top warplane-designers insisted. Neither of these things is the unqualified truth. More importantly, neither of them would matter even if they were true. Eight years after its first flight,... Read more
The YF-23 Stealth Fighter Won’t Save Us
A stealth fighter demonstrator that last flew in 1994 has enjoyed a cultural resurgence in recent years. But the YF-23’s renaissance reflects a pernicious kind of magical thinking that actually undermines America’s national defense. The YF-23 was Northrop Grumman’s entry in the U.S. Air Force’s Advanced Tactical Fighter competition... Read more
China’s J-20 Stealth Fighter Is Successful
China’s J-20 stealth fighter was a disappointment at the 2018 edition of the country’s biennial air show in Zhuhai in southern China. Three of the twin-engine warplanes put on what one reporter called a “conservative” aerial display lacking quick turns and other high-energy maneuvers. Likewise, it was apparent that... Read more
Looks Like China Has a Carrier Drone
China apparently possesses a jet-propelled unmanned aerial vehicle that’s suitable for tests aboard a future, catapult-equipped aircraft carrier. The development means Beijing in theory could rapidly deploy fast drones aboard a planned class of large carriers, once the new vessels commission into service in the mid-2020s. The Tian Ying... Read more
Russia’s Assembling a Drone-Jamming Force
The Russian military is getting better at taking down enemy drones. That could have serious implications for the United States as it relies more on unmanned aircraft. The crews of Silok electronic-warfare vehicles “forced to land unmanned aerial vehicles” during a war game near Leningrad involving 500 service members,... Read more
The F-35 Is the Wrong Choice for Belgium
Belgium reportedly has chosen the American-made F-35 to replace its old F-16s. The F-35 is a technological marvel, with radar-absorbing skin coatings that help it to avoid detection. But it’s also complex, expensive and unreliable. Unable to fly as frequently as the F-16 can do, and too expensive to... Read more
The Soviet MiG-25 Spooked the U.S. Military
The MiG-25 Foxbat was one of the most awesome, yet most misunderstood, fighters of the Cold War. Envisioned as an interceptor designed to destroy U.S. supersonic bombers and high-flying spy planes, the Foxbat also put its high speed to good use as a reconnaissance aircraft and, to less good... Read more
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