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AUGUST 2020

U.S. Air Force Abandons 80% Mission-Capable Goal For Fighter Jets To Avoid Future Disappointment

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U.S. Air Force Abandons 80% Mission-Capable Goal For Fighter Jets To Avoid Future Disappointment

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The United States Air Force officially abandoned its directive to get its fleet of F-35, F-22 and F-16 jets up to an 80% mission-capable rate after failing to meet that goal in Fiscal Year 2019.

Appearing at the 2019 Defense News Conference, Lt. Gen. Mark Kelly, deputy chief of staff for operations, said that the F-22 and F-35A would both fall short of the capability target set by Mattis shortly before his exit from the Pentagon. The F-16, however, “should” hit that target rate.

Of the 5,413 or so aircraft in the fleet, the percentage able to fly at any given time decreased steadily each year since at least FY12, when 77.9% of aircraft were deemed flyable. By FY17, that metric plunged to 71.3%, and it dipped again to 69.97% in FY18.

According to written responses by Air Force General Charles Q. Brown ahead of his May 7 confirmation hearing, “the F-16 mission capable rate reached a high of 75% in June 2019, the F-22 mission capable rate achieved a high of 68% in April 2019 and the F-35 mission capability rate climbed to a high of 74% in September 2019.”

Data obtained by Defense News and Air Forces Times, however, showed that over the entire 2019 the rate is also under 80%, and wouldn’t be able to achieve the 80% goal mandated by an order by back-then US Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, given in October 2018.

The overall rates were, reportedly, “much lower” throughout the year.

The F-35A fighter jet, the conventional landing type, actually improved in 2019, reaching a mission-capable rate of 62%, compared to 50% in 2018.

The F-16 mission-capable rate grew a bit, with F-16C going to 73% in 2019, compared to 70% in 2018. The F-16D’s mission-capable rate rose from 66 percent to 70 percent over that time period.

The F-22 mission-capable rate decreased slightly, going to 51% in 2019, from 52% in 2018.

In order to avoid future disappointment, Pentagon leadership decided not to renew the effort in FY20, Brown told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

“The Office of the Secretary of Defense determined the FY19 80-percent Mission Capable (MC) Rate initiative is not an FY20 requirement,” wrote Brown.

Instead, the Air Force is returning to the practice of allowing commanders to set their mission-capable objectives.

“We continue to balance near term readiness recovery with investment long-term combat capability,” Brown said. “While maintaining all of our aging fleets are difficult and expensive, we continuously examine emerging technologies, commercial best practices, and other methods to reduce the sustainment costs for our Air Force.”

In his hearing, Brown reiterated the Air Force’s need to grow to 386 squadrons over the long term. He also said that the US Air Force was capable of carrying out the National Defense Strategy “to an extent.”

“In the immediate term, I think we are, but we’ve still got to be able to grow to the 386” squadrons, Brown said. “Anything less than 386 incurs risk.”

He acknowledged the Air Force may come close but might not completely meet that goal, which was first laid out by previous Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson.

However, progress in terms of unmanned technology would be of great assistance.

“We may be a little bit smaller than 386, but we’ll be more capable,” Brown said. “It’s not just the manned platforms; it’s also how we do manned-unmanned teaming. The XQ-58 Valkyrie [combat drone] is one of those systems that we can team up with, particularly some of our fifth-gen capability to increase our range, increase our awareness, to increase our strike capability.”

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  • d’Artagnan

    US is bankrupt with $32 TRILLION debt now and millions jobless and homeless and 60% of their military is infected with virus and most of the population is living on food banks and they still have delusions of global conquest. Feel pity for them.

    • Poppadop

      Remember the Great Depression? The bankster mafia sank the US economy back then, too. It then used FDR’s New Deal, World War 2, and similar policies to lower unemployment and restore industry. It also hit Germany and Japan with sanctions, provocations, and false flag attacks to justify the war (today, Russia, China, Iran, etc. are hit the same way).

      The NWO elites believe in their “delusions of global conquest” because they succeeded at it before. This time, the Soviets are not available as an “ally” or proxy army, and the economic hole the elites dug is deeper. But do they sound like quitters…?

    • AM Hants

      But now the Treasury and Fed are working together, the printers are running 24/7, rattling out mega spends.

  • pp

    US will destroy chinese assholes in 5 years :D

    • Zionism = EVIL

      This cunt is Iron Zion with a new fake account pretending to Indian but mega culture failure there :) as other Indians caught him out LOL

      • pp

        i talked with ashok in hindi u can ask him this question u mutah worshipper :D

        • jade villaceran

          you can talk any language you want because of translator

    • valpura

      In repelling its own public debt? I opt for 5 months instead

    • Bob

      China is one of the four great ancient civilizations – that comes with a recorded history tag of 4000 years – the US is somewhat lacking in historical comparison – China isn’t going anywhere. Note: envy and resentment are unhealthy emotional places to reside.

    • Daily Beatings

      I don’t think so:

      US ‘gets ass handed to it’ in WW3 simulations with China, Russia: analysts

      The U.S. repeatedly “gets its ass handed to it” in World War III simulations, according to the global research organization RAND.

      “In our games, when we fight Russia and China … blue gets its ass handed to it,” RAND senior researcher David Ochmanek said during a panel discussion at the Center for a New American Security think tank last week.

      https://americanmilitarynews.com/2019/03/us-gets-ass-handed-to-it-in-ww3-simulations-with-china-russia-analysts/

    • JIMI JAMES

      US WILL DESTROY US,more fkn well like it,assflogged!

  • Zionism = EVIL

    Americunt shameless cunts are dying like rabid dogs in a beggar failed state and they want to fight China and “dominate the world” ROFLMAO!

  • Superfly

    US is bankrupt deadbeat and a laughing stock in Europe and rest of the world.

  • johnny rotten

    It reminds me of the story of the fox and the grapes of Aesop.

  • John

    This is probably just a maintenance number. I don’t know if it is the same thing as we called it back in the day ….. mission availability. But, that was during the exercises. And yeah, I doubt those numbers are real. aircraft require a lot of attention and somewhere between 25% and 50% is probably more the norm. Oh, you can put those things in the air far from 100%. I did carrier ops off of an assault ship with our bird, a 53, that was absolutely hard down. We even did a load at 95% airframe max and that was because they miscalculated the payload weight. :P Oh, to be young and completely crazy again….. Scarey stuff fellas. We were picked for the crew because, we were single. :)

    What is interesting here is that this is even getting out into the public realm. You know these percentages are massaged to the nth degree. If the actual operational availability for required missions is or has taken a dive, that is the alarming number. I have not seen any info on that ( and that one they don’t want to tell anybody). My take folks. I wish a good day to all.

    • goingbrokes

      Thanks, I suspected as much, but it’s good to hear from someone who’s been there and done it!

  • Assad must stay

    Good for world peace hahahahha

  • zman

    The only reason the F-16 attained that level of readiness is because it was actually a well designed and built plane. To keep them in the air is relatively easy compared to the others mentioned because they actually have parts inventory for them and the parts are reliable and tested (mostly thanks to Israel flying them). But, how do you attain the goals set when you have aircraft that from day 1 have never been reliable or issues resolved? The answer is simple, you don’t. Now that the parts manufactured in Turkey for the F-35 have run out due to US intransigence and no alternative supply on line, attaining any semblance of that goal is dead. The parts for the F-22, which manufacturing has ceased, means that too is a pipe dream. Just another example of US MIC pigs in a poke. But CONgress (kick-backs R us) will keep throwing money into those pits.

    • Brian Michael Bo Pedersen

      I heard a RDAF pilot once say that the F-16 is the aviation VW, Cant remember his exact words but it was something like; Its relative cheap, its easy to maintain, reliable, can load more than expected and it just works.

      • zman

        That’s why Israel has invested so much in modifying it, it’s a good investment. Israel is finding the F-35 is a money pit…but what do they care, the US likely foots the bill.

    • Stinky Man

      The F-35 is a PIG of a plane. That being said before any production capability was transferred to Turkey it was developed and perfected in the US then production equipment was supplied to Turkey. Moving the production isn’t difficult. I’m not certain the US ever stopped producing the same parts the Turks were producing.
      The F-22 parts are still being produced the plane itself is not. It is the most advanced plane in the air today when it can get into the air.

      • JIMI JAMES

        No it fkn well ain’t infact anywhere near mack 3,let alone supersonic missiles of the far more advanced russian of todays (period) f22 was a poisonous death trap,still is,call that advaced? YOU ARE ANOTHER ULTRA LOW IQ,uneducated lazy troll without a clue!

      • zman

        For production being moved not being a problem, why have they run out of parts? If it was no problem, they would have done it already. I suppose you think Turkey will just return any equipment they have to the US or whoever will take their place.

        • Stinky Man

          The equipment are mere copies of existing equipment. Turkey can now shove the equipment they have up their dirtbag asses. I do suspect the equipment to be returned or the issue to be resolved where Turkey is permitted to continue production.

  • cechas vodobenikov

    to believe these lies one must be stupid; Americans have always been liars.. a nation of idiot robots….if they claim 70%, it is at best 30%….these insecure children claimed that the millions of women and children they murdered in Vietnam were VC and they claimed there were WMD’s in Iraq….these racist fascists r only trusted by other racist fascists that r extraordinarily malevolent and stupid

    • JIMI JAMES

      This is not like prior to the 90s ,times have changed and there are too many variables and defficiencys across the spectrum including the known failures to be considered viably correct!
      The last death knell was democrat governance,ever since entire fleet compromised,even going through bits and pieces that were atleast manufactured correct more than not back then,oh well!

  • Anthony Papagallo

    Its a question of perspective. From the point of view of the shareholders of Northrup, Boeing and Lockheed Martin these aircraft have been immensely successful. They have enriched them beyond the dreams of avarice.

  • AM Hants

    The F35, besides all the problems, they now cannot produce it, owing to nobody replacing Turkish production section.

  • Ivan Freely

    Pierre Sprey is laughing his ass off right now.

  • JIMI JAMES

    BULLSHIT,THE REAL NUMBER IS MORE LIKE 28-30%,seriously,who said this cia/msn/stock exchange?

  • Tudor Miron

    “Brown reiterated the Air Force’s need to grow to 386 squadrons over the long term.” (c) this guy is still in a denying phase… It will pass.