11 June 2010

Knuckle-dragging, racist, neocon...

...Stephen Harper... refuses comment on advanced Haitian strike-fighter being left off Canadian shortlist...
racist neoconsCue Willie Sutton.


Mark, Ottawa said...

But it ain't just Haiti. One of the possible competitors for the F-35 is the Boeing F/A 18E/F--which the US Navy and Marine Corps are buying new until 2014, maybe 2015. If good enough for them...


Mark, Ottawa said...

Of course the Globe headline was loaded given the American provenance of that possible competitor.

The F-35 buy is really about hoped for money for Canadian, esp. Quebec, industry (plus the Air Force craves the plane).

A comment from a professional at Milnet.ca:

'Quote from: KrazyHamburglar on Today at 11:14:42

In my opinion, it only make sense to buy the planes we helped design. Canada has already put over 160 millions on the development of the F-35

How does it make sense? The $160M is spent, regardless of the plane we purchase. Instead of saying "I want an F-35", we should be saying:

"We want sufficient aircraft for training, operations, and overhaul to ensure XXX availabilty"

"We want aircraft interoperable with standards A,B,C,D and F."

"We want industrial offsets of $X for each $ we spend"

And so on, detailing the results we want. Then we see what is available. Then we purchase the aircraft fleet that best meets our needs.

In addition, based on our experience with the MHP [maritime helicopter program--Sikorsky Cyclone as replacement for Sea King which has been rather a disaster], would it not be prudent to insist on a currently operational aircraft? Depending on the variant we acquire (A or C) the aircraft is not fully operational, and still undergoing testing and development; a design currently in use avoids those possible problems.'


robins111 said...

I'm wondering if any of the lefty rice maggots have figured out what an asset STEALTH will be if we need them.

CF-18 lights up radar like the sun, but hey, we need to look at options where taliban jack & iggy want to level the playing field in war.

Mark, Ottawa said...

From Aviation Week & Space Technology, June 7, p. 27 (text subscriber only):

"Political Tribulations

In December, Pentagon officials anticipated the per-unit cost, including the price of development, to be $112 million; it is now expected to be $155.6 million. The number most closely associated with flyaway pricing was $92.4 million only a few months ago; it is now $133 million..."

From the Globe and Mail story June 11:

"...documents show that the cost of the acquisition [for Canada of 65 F-35s] is $8.99-billion..."

Guess what? 65x$133 million (flyaway cost)=$8.65 million (US). No coincidence, given exchange rate, one would think.

Meanwhile it seems the standard flyaway price for an F/A-18E/F is US$ 57 million:

Time for some math. And one wonders how costly it will be to maintain the F-35's stealthiness.


Anonymous said...

Yeah we need em' the F18 is getting long in the tooth, mind you thanks to Brian or else we would be flying 'wood buffalos' still. (real conservative)

Rick Thomson said...

A mere 65 aircraft to defend the 2nd largest nation on earth, and if need be project our force overseas...I'm not certain whether I should laugh or cry.

Consider this, 50 years ago we had 12 Fighter Sqns stationed in Europe, and quite a few more than that number in Canada, not to mention some 400+ T-33s that could be armed as fighter bombers, also 30 odd Banshees belonging to the RCN which were just about as well armed as the Hornets serving today.

Mark, Ottawa said...

Rick Thomson: The Banshees did not have Sidewinders, Sparrows, PGMs, etc.
See here for info on the most recent upgrade which makes our Hornets' capabilities even more un-Banshee-like

We only have 80 Hornets in service now, one squadron for training. I believe the plan with F-35s is to do the equivalent training in the US, so the number of front-line fighters would remain roughly the same.

As you note, in the 1950s and after we had substantial numbers of aircraft based with NATO in Europe in face of the USSR (with strong forces in the GDR) and Warsaw Pact, a situation that no longer applies.

Not that current and future fighter numbers are anything to be proud of. But it all depends on what governments--including this Conservative one--are willing to pay for (modern fighters are rather terribly expensive) and what they choose to buy (the F-35 becoming esp. expensive in particular, we could buy considerably more of some other fighter types).


Jim said...

I think it would be great for Canada to have a 5th generation fighter like the F-35, if we could afford them.

I am pretty sure our Air Force is hot for them, and who could blame them, but it strikes me as odd that they would go against their own edict against single engine aircraft.

Perhaps we could buy 30 of them and spend the remainder of Super Hornets. We could probably get 100 Super Hornets with the savings. One big plus for the Super Hornet is the fact that flight crews and pilots are already familiar with the aircraft and the support structure would need to change very little.

While we are on the subject, I would love to see Canada obtain a pile of Fairchild A-10 Warthogs and perhaps some Apache attack helos. These would see much more use for us on the modern battlefield than a world class fighter would.

They would be especially useful should Abrams tanks ever stream across our border. ;)

Jim said...

Now, now! You partisans are ruining a perfectly good thread about military aircraft and money.

Please stay in your lane.

Anonymous said...

Its funny when conservatives become all protectionist and anti-capitalists for things such as this. I say, let anyone compete and let the best combination of capability and affordability win. Ya know the Indians and Russians have developed their own stealth fighters. A few other countries are also working on stealth technology.