Watch the A-10 Movie the U.S. Air Force Doesn’t Want You to See
Official film praises the same jet the flying branch wants to retire
The U.S. Air Force has practically begged Congress to allow it to retire its roughly 300 A-10 Warthogs, those venerable twin-jet attackers that saved countless soldiers’ lives in Iraq and Afghanistan—and which recently returned to Iraq to help battle Islamic State.
The flying branch argues that the new F-35 stealth fighter is an adequate replacement for the low- and slow-flying Warthog—and the Air Force should spend its money buying F-35s instead of maintaining the A-10s and their unique 30-millimeter cannons.
In fact, the F-35 is too fast, too flimsy and years away from front-line service. But the Air Force has its mind made up. And as part of its campaign to kill the A-10, the flying branch has declined to release a short documentary that its own public affairs practitioners produced about the Warthog’s lifesaving missions in Afghanistan.
But we got our hands on a copy of the film, via an A-10 advocacy group on Facebook and the American Daily Independent newspaper. It’s low-resolution and names and faces are blurred out, but you’ll get the point when you watch it above.
The A-10 is an awesome warplane. Its pilots love it. And so do the ground troops who depend on its support.
Why would the Air Force suppress the A-10 docu when it had no problem releasing a similar short film about the F-16, embedded below? Maybe it’s because there are hundreds or even thousands of A-10 pilots and maintainers who are passionate about saving their plane. And as former Air Force gunship pilot Bob Seifert pointed out recently, “The USAF is harder on internal ideas than it is on evil insurgents.”
Fortunately, Congress is having none of the Air Force’s nonsense. Legislators have required the flying branch to keep the A-10s at least through 2015.