Skip directly to content


Not Ready for Prime Time - DOT&E Report: The F-35 Is Not Ready for IOC and Won't Be Any Time Soon

on Fri, 03/27/2015 - 12:36

By Mandy Smithberger*

Inside-the-Beltway wisdom holds that the $1.4 trillion F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program is too big to cancel and on the road to recovery. But the latest report from the Defense Department’s Director of Operational Test and Evaluation (DOT&E) provides a litany of reasons that conventional wisdom should be considered politically driven propaganda. The press has already reported flawed software that hinders the ability of the plane to employ weapons, communicate information, and detect threats; maintenance problems so severe that the F-35 has an “overdependence” on

Credible Evidence U.S. Air Force Knew About Raptor Problems

on Fri, 09/28/2012 - 01:07

There are few things cooler than a fighter jet. Growing up, I was fascinated by, and proud of, all sorts of things about the US Military but, being a kid, few things drew my attention as did it's fighter jets. And for good reason. Be it the F-14, F-15, or F-16 each were world class and top of the line aircraft (and even today the A-10 is the best of its kind). Sure each had its teething problems, but these were resolved; and to this day the latter two are still ranked amongst the world's best and most popular aircraft.

Long time readers of this website will know that I have had, and continue

Celebrating Labor Day 2012: Willow Run

on Sun, 09/02/2012 - 18:58

Observed on the first Monday in September, Labor Day is a U.S. Federal holiday honoring the contributions of America's workers. In celebration of Labor Day 2012 we will take a look at one of the biggest and most spectacular industrial efforts in U.S. history: the Willow Run Manufacturing Plant.

During the massive rearmament drive ordered by U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt prior to the U.S. entry into World War II aircraft production quickly rose to the forefront of manufacturing efforts - particularly the production of heavy bombers.

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Program Takes Another Hit

on Tue, 07/03/2012 - 18:40

More bad news for the F-35 "Lightning" Joint Strike Fighter program - this time from the US Navy's Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Jonathan Greenert. In the July 2012 issue of the US Naval Institute's magazine Proceedings Admiral Greenert indirectly calls into question one of the key assumptions undergirding the development of the F-35C (the Navy's version of the JSF): the need for stealth.

As part of a larger article detailing why the Navy needs to focus on building dependable, affordable platforms capable of delivering a wide range of payloads to flexibly adapt to numerous missions

60 Years and Counting for the B-52!

on Tue, 06/19/2012 - 20:53

This year the U.S. Air Force's B-52 "Stratofortress" heavy strategic bomber is completing its 60th year since it's first flight, and nearly 60th year of service. Capable of carrying nuclear or precision guided conventional ordnance (or even "dumb" bombs for that matter), the youngest of these versatile and durable aircraft have been in front line service for 50 years!

Though widely regarded as perhaps one of the quintessential symbol's of the Cold War and the nuclear age the B-52 is also superb in a conventional role. According to the U.S.

New GAO Report Out on F-35 JSF Program: It's Not Pretty

on Sat, 06/16/2012 - 17:57

On June 14, 2012 the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued its latest progress report for Congress on the most expensive weapons program in history: the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. Unfortunately, in spite of years of delays, including further restructuring in 2011 and 2012 the result's to date continue to be nothing short of abysmal.

For instance, the GAO has found that:

  • Regardless of the program development cost overruns (see below) F-35 life-cycle operating and support costs are now estimated at a whopping $1.1 trillion. This means that when comparing the Air Force's primary

A Rare Ju-87 Stuka Found in Baltic and is Being Recovered

on Wed, 06/13/2012 - 17:29

The German army is currently raising from the Baltic sea floor a Junkers Ju-87 Sturzkampfflugzueg (or "Stuka") located in roughly 60 feet of water. Found six miles off the coast of the German Baltic island of Rugen, the aircraft is, according to reports, in good condition. 

Perhaps the most famous dive bomber of the Second World War, the Ju-87 "Stuka"served throughout the war as Germany's primary close air support aircraft. The Stuka carried a range of new technologies that enabled its pilots to achieve a high degree of accuracy.

Nazi Germany's Workhorse Twin-Engine Aircraft

on Sun, 04/22/2012 - 14:13

World War Two Vehicles has posted some production figures for German aircraft. Though well known, in perusing through them once more one of the items that stands out is, of course, the sheer size of the JU-88 production program - with roughly 15,000-16,000 such aircraft produced by the Third Reich.

Race to Save World's Last Known Do-17

on Fri, 11/04/2011 - 21:45

Lying underwater in the English Channel off the coast of Kent, United Kingdom is the world's last known surviving Do-17 bomber. In a joint attempt the Royal Air Force Museum and Imperial College of London are attempting to salvage the well preserved Do-17 - found in 2010 after sands shifted that had previously hidden the bomber, and have now left it exposed to seawater that can corrode the aircraft very quickly. Shot down during the height of the Battle of Britain this aircraft, as the last of its kind, is of considerable historical importance.

Built by Dornier Flugzeugwerke, the twin engine

Last Surviving Polish Battle of Britain Pilot Dies

on Wed, 10/26/2011 - 22:58

Brigadier General Tadeusz Sawicz died on 19 October at a nursing home in Toronto, Canada - he was 97 years old and was the last surviving Polish pilot to have fought with the RAF during the 1940 Battle of Britain. Sawicz was one of 145 Polish pilots who fought with the RAF during the Battle of Britain and was credited with three kills during his service with the RAF.

Overall, The Battle of Britain represented a disaster for the Luftwaffe and a blow to the prestige of the Wehrmacht as a whole.