Monday, December 31, 2007

New Presidential Helicopter On Hold

I said when the Navy awarded the contact this was a mistake now it looks like I and other observers were right. The contact should have been awarded day one to Sikorsky who has been responsible for Marine One as long as I can remember. The advantages of Sikorsky were new technology and most important an American company. I need to be clear here the base helicopter in question is an Augusta Westland modified EH-101 with LM and Bell as integrators. Lets hope the Navy does the right thing for once and cancel this turkey and buy the Sikorsky.

The most trying moment for the VH-71 presidential helicopter came in the twilight of what had already been a rocky year for the program.
After cost increases and schedule problems — driven in part by nearly 2,000 requirement changes — DoD officials met Dec. 13 with the White House Military Office to discuss the program’s fate.
The following day rumors abounded that the program faced cancellation, but the Pentagon swatted away speculation.
“There has been no decision to terminate the program,” Bill Balderson, deputy assistant secretary of the Navy for aviation programs, said Dec. 14. “We’re continuing to look at all the options. We’ve looked at almost every conceivable option because we didn’t want to take anything off the table.”
Sources suggested that the Pentagon wanted to kill the program, which reportedly has grown from $7 billion to $11 billion, but was overruled by the White House.
Neither White House nor Pentagon officials could discuss details of the meeting, but one source said that after all options were discussed, the decision was made to move ahead with the program.
A team composed of Lockheed Martin, AgustaWestland and Bell Helicopter Textron won the contract with the US101 in 2005, but rising costs and engineering glitches slowed development and raised concerns in the Pentagon.
A critical design review found that the Increment 1 aircraft met the needs of the first phase of the program, but an April systems requirements review revealed that nearly 2,000 design changes would be needed to meet Pentagon requirements for the second round of aircraft. The changes included a new tail, transmission and rotor blades.
“Increment 1 was a different program, a different airplane,” Balderson said. “There was an underestimation at the outset of how much work and how much time it was going to take to meet the requirements.”
With Lockheed’s ability to meet the 2015 delivery deadline for Increment 2 aircraft in doubt, the program has been essentially put on hold while options are considered.

Russia Denies Selling Iran an S-300 Air Defense System

So the Iranians are lying again, say its not so. But trust us we are not building towards a nuclear reactor. LMAO

Russia denied selling a powerful new air defense system to Iran, following an announcement by the Iranian government that Russia would supply it.
"The question of selling Iran an S-300 anti-air missile system ... is not on the agenda, is not being discussed and is not being talked currently about with the Iranian side," the Federal Service for Military Cooperation said in a statement.
This week, Iran announced it was to receive the S-300 system, prompting the U.S. government to express "concern."
Earlier this year, Moscow overrode U.S. opposition by delivering to Tehran 29 TOR-M1 air defense missile systems, in a deal estimated to be worth $700 million.
Iranian state media touted the S-300 as an even more sophisticated system than the TOR-M1, saying it could hit incoming enemy targets at a greater altitude.

Friday, December 28, 2007

C-17's over Charleston

I just thought this was a cool shot

Fifteen C-17 Globemaster IIIs from Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., fly over the city of Charleston's Arthur J. Ravenel Bridge Dec. 20 during a training exercise. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. James L. Harper Jr.)

Al- Qaeda Claims Credit In Bhutto’s Assassination

This should not surprise anyone. What can be hoped for is that this act will convince her supporters and others in Pakistan that Al-Qaeda and fundamentalist Islam is the real enemy and ignite a fire under them to clear out the Western provinces. This same thing has happened in Iraq and has contributed to the large gains made by the Surge over the last 5 months.
But the delusional left will still blame Bush and Musharraf instead of the radical terrorists.

Karachi, 27 Dec. (AKI) - (by Syed Saleem Shahzad) - A spokesperson for the al-Qaeda terrorist network has claimed responsibility for the death on Thursday of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.
“We terminated the most precious American asset which vowed to defeat [the] mujahadeen,” Al-Qaeda’s commander and main spokesperson Mustafa Abu Al-Yazid told Adnkronos International (AKI) in a phone call from an unknown location, speaking in faltering English. Al-Yazid is the main al-Qaeda commander in Afghanistan.
It is believed that the decision to kill Bhutto, who is the leader of the opposition Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), was made by al-Qaeda No. 2, the Egyptian doctor, Ayman al-Zawahiri in October.
Death squads were allegedly constituted for the mission and ultimately one cell comprising a defunct Lashkar-i-Jhangvi’s Punjabi volunteer succeeded in killing Bhutto.
Bhutto had just addressed a pre-election rally on Thursday in the garrison town of Rawalpindi when the bomb went off.
She had come to Rawalpindi after finishing a rapid election campaign, ahead of the January polls, in Pakistan’s volatile North West Frontier Province (NWFP) where she had talked about a war against terrorism and al-Qaeda.
Reports say at least 15 other people were killed in the attack and several others injured.
As news of Bhutto’s death spread throughout the country, there are reports that people have taken to the streets to protest the death of the leader of the PPP, which has the largest support of any party in Pakistan.
In the southern port city of Karachi, Bhutto’s hometown, residents reportedly threw stones at cars and burnt tyres.

Russians To Sell Iran S-300 SAM System

The Russians have announced the sale of the sophisticated S-300 SAM system to Iran.
While concerning I cannot belive this is a showstopper if U.S. or Israeli forces deem it necessary to take down the Iranian nuclear program.

U.S. Concerned By Russian Sale Of Air Defense Systems To Iran
The White House expressed concern Dec. 27 over Iran’s announcement that Russia would supply S-300 air missile defense systems to the Islamic republic.
“We have ongoing concerns about the prospective sale of such weapons to Iran and other countries of concern,” Scott Stanzel, a White House spokesman, said from Crawford, Texas, where President George W. Bush was spending the year-end holiday on his ranch.
Iranian Defense Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar announced Dec. 27 that Russia would deliver the system but said the date for the delivery would be revealed later. Moscow has not confirmed the sale.
The announcement came as Washington is seeking to impose new U.N. sanctions on Iran over its refusal to halt its nuclear program, which the U.S. fears could be used to build an atomic bomb.
Earlier this year, Moscow frustrated Washington by delivering to Tehran 29 TOR-M1 air defense missile systems, in a deal estimated to be worth $700 million.
Iranian state media touted the S-300 as an even more sophisticated system than the TOR-M1, saying it could hit incoming enemy targets at a greater altitude. Iran said in January it had successfully test fired the TOR-M1.
The U.S. had urged Russia to cancel that sale, saying it was a mistake when the U.N. Security Council had imposed sanctions on Iran’s ballistic missile industry as part of measures against its nuclear drive.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Blast From The Past, XB-70 Valkyrie

The XB-70 was a bomber developed in the early 1960’s as a follow on high-speed replacement for the B-47. Although none were actually delivered to the Air Force, 2 test prototype versions were developed and flown extensively.
The XB-70 had many unique features; it was the first A/C to use extensive stainless steel honeycomb construction, engine installation was another ground-breaking feature on the Valkyrie, everything was bolted to the engine itself, making engine removal and replacement a job that could be done in just a couple of hours. The wings were another unique item, in flight, the XB-70 could lower the outer wing sections either 25 degrees for flying from 300 knots to Mach 1.4, or 65 degrees for speeds from Mach 1.4 to Mach 3+. Measuring just a bit over 20 feet at the trailing edge, these wingtips represent the largest movable aerodynamic device ever used.
The Valkyrie was truly an amazing aircraft with both jets running many hours at Mach 3, developing all kinds of aerodynamic data that was used in later A/C development programs. The Air Force left the program after the second prototype was lost in a mid air collision with an F-104 killing one of the crew and the Starfighter pilot. NASA flew the jet on 33 more research flights with the final flight to the Air Force museum at Wright Patterson AFB in February of 1969.

Crew: 2
Length: 185 Ft 10 in (56.6 m)
Wing Span: 105 ft 0 in (32 m)
Height: 30 ft 9 in (9.4 m)
Wing area: 6,296 ft² (585 m²)
Airfoil: Hexagonal; 0.30 Hex modified root, 0.70 Hex modified tip
Empty weight: 210,000 lbs (93,000 kg)
Loaded weight: 534,700 lb (242,500 kg)
Max takeoff weight : 550,000 lb (250,000 kg)
Power plant: 6× GE Y93 turbojets 28,000 lbs of thrust) each
Max Speed: Mach 3.1 (2,056mph, 3,309 km/h)
Cruise Speed:Mach 3.0 (2,000 mph, 3,219 km/h)
Range: 4,288 mi (7,900 km) combat
Service ceiling: 77,350 ft (23,600 m)

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas

Here is wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Remember New Years Eve is for amateurs.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

F-15 A-D Model Almost Ready For Flight

Great job by the Robbins Team, I’ve worked with this fine team on numerous occasions when I was on active duty. They due a great job and are a major asset for the Air Force.

Robins team believes last snag cleared in F-15 groundings
BY: Gene Rector, Macon Telegraph (Ga.)12/19/2007

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE -- After a tedious, highly detailed process much like crime scene investigation, Robins Air Force Base engineers believe they have cleared the last technical hurdle affecting the nation's F-15 fleet.
Older models of the supersonic fighter have been grounded three times - the latest happening Dec. 4 - following the Nov. 2 crash of a Missouri Air National Guard F-15C.The last two stand downs have affected only the F-15 A through D models, about 450 aircraft. The newer, heavier and more robust F-15Es - 224 aircraft - were returned to flight Nov. 11.
The investigation has focused on upper cockpit longerons near the canopy area. To this point, cracks have been found in eight aircraft - all F-15Cs. Officials zeroed in on that area after eye witnesses to the crash said the jet appeared to separate immediately behind the cockpit during normal training maneuvers. The pilot ejected with only minor injuries.
Col. Stephen Niemantsverdriet, 880th Aircraft Sustainment Group commander at Robins, said cracks have been found in both the right and left upper cockpit longerons of the eight aircraft. He said 97 percent of the fleet has been inspected. Longerons are metal rails that run horizontally and hold the fuselage together.
The Warner Robins Air Logistics Center at Robins is the worldwide manager of the Air Force's F-15 fleet, providing resupply, periodic overhaul and engineering oversight for the premier, but aging air superiority weapon system.
The F-15 first entered the Air Force inventory in 1975. The latest model - the F-15E - joined the force beginning in the late 1980s. The fleet averages 25 years of service.Robins engineers have issued eight inspection orders to flying units since early November -the latest at midnight Dec. 15 - identifying areas to be inspected and the techniques to be used.
"Based on our review and interaction with Boeing and the accident board, we believe we have captured and mitigated all the risks," Niemantsverdriet indicated. "We're just at the point of getting the airplanes flying again, although that decision will be made by Air Combat Command and other using command."
McDonnell-Douglas, the original manufacturer of the F-15, was purchased by Boeing some years ago.
A thinning of the longeron at a key stress point - possibly due to a manufacturing defect - may be the root cause of the mishap and the cracks found in the eight aircraft."More than likely it is a manufacturing issue and we have pulled all the Boeing material discrepancy reports," the group commander said. "So far, we have not been able to isolate it to a particular production run or series. The cracks show up in aircraft as old as 1978 and as new as 1985."
Recurring checks had not called for a review of the area in the past."It was a 25,000 to 100,000-hour part," the colonel stressed. "So it was not included in our depot and phase inspections. It was designed to significantly outlast the aircraft."
However, the Robins team has learned that a number of factors create additional stress on the component - a splice joint in the two-piece longeron with different material thicknesses coming together, reduced width proceeding from the joint, angle variations and changes in the canopy sill.
"So a large amount of activity occurs in that single spot," Niemantsverdriet acknowledged. "It's like a creek that narrows down, making the water flow faster."
The inspections call for a thorough review for cracks in the longeron and a check for prescribed thickness. "We're looking at a good portion of the longeron - about 30 inches - and we're checking thickness at about 90 different locations. For an aircraft to be released to fly, there must be no cracks and the thickness must meet production tolerances," he said.If thickness issues crop up on crack-free aircraft, Boeing - at the request of Robins - will conduct fatigue life analysis to see if the aircraft can be returned to flight.
Replacement longerons will be manufactured at Robins. Niemantsverdriet said a production order has been placed for 15 with an anticipated 120-day lead time."We believe we can accelerate that," he said, "although one of the limiting factors will be availability of material."The Robins commander had high praise for his engineering team, the non-destructive inspection lab on base and technicians on the center's maintenance line who have assisted with validating and verifying inspection orders before they were released to the flying units."My hat's off to our engineering team and the people who have given us a

Why Not Minot? Freezing Is The Reason

As the official start of winter is just a few days away, I would like to salute the soon to be frozen airmen of Minot as they perform the daily task of getting the Buff into the air.

(Photos: USAF)

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

American Taliban Tries Again To Commute Sentence

Once again lawyers for American Taliban John Walker Lindh has called on President Bush to commute his 20-year sentence. He was originally charged with conspiring to kill Americans and supporting terrorists but pleaded guilty in 2002 to lesser offenses of supplying services to the now-defunct Taliban government. This is his 4th attempt to have his sentence commuted. The father of CIA officer Mike Spann, who was killed in an Afghanistan prison uprising where Lindh was captured, called for Lindh to serve his full sentence. While his mother during a news conference Tuesday said” His only offense was serving in the army of Afghanistan, He's admitted this was a mistake on his part."
Newsflash to this dirt bag and other of his ilk, they are non-uniformed enemy combatants and as such can be tried and executed by a military tribunal in the field. They are not afforded any protection under Geneva Convention 1949 or any of the supplements because they due not meet the criteria of a legal combatant or other protected individual. In my opinion 20 years was not enough, with the death of Mike Spann he should never be allowed to walk free again.

Energy Policy Disaster

Once again the career politicians in Washington have failed us with today’s vote by the House on the latest feel good policy. My own local congressman Mike McIntyre voted yes as usual. Mike for years has been a decent guy but over the last 18 months he has gone from a southern blue dog to voting with Nancy and company on almost all of their anti war surrender and other left wing legislation. He does decent work for veterans in our area as he stabs a knife in the back of the troops currently in the field, troops like my daughters boyfriend a Marine Corporal in Delta Company 2nd LAV who are gearing up for their next deployment to the desert. Mike right now could be the poster boy for term limits. The state republicans are running an Iraq Vet Will Breazeale who is a current Army reserve major and airline pilot I will be supporting him as best I can to get rid of Mike once and for all. Below is my latest letter to Mike.

Once again we have another useless feel good bill by your Democrat comrades and the Rhino’s on the hill that in the long term will due more harm than good. Some of the unintended consequences will be a continued increase in the cost of basic food as more corn is diverted to government subsidized ethanol production. The talk of making huge amounts of ethanol from non-corn cellulose sources is nothing but a pipe dream much like the talk of a switch to hydrogen fuel. Who exactly is going to pay for the research and development for the technology to make this happen? Oh I know it will be my fellow taxpayers and myself. And of course final implementation of the ethanol boondoggle is 2022 long after all of the curent members are gone from office. This bill will also be another major hit for a beleaguered US auto industry that will now have to retool to make new smaller cars when their market share and ability to invest is already crippled.

I love the quote by Hoyer "This legislation is a historic turning point in energy policy, because it will cut demand for foreign oil and promote non fossil fuels that will cut greenhouse gases linked to global warming”. Any read of basic scientific literature will show that that water vapor has a greater effect in atmospheric heating than Co2 and ethanol produces much more water vapor than gasoline and because it is not as thermally efficient as gasoline more must be burned to accomplish the same amount of work. The Majority leaders comments are at the least disingenuous and show how the fringe of the environmental movement is swaying the thinking of the Democrat party.

Like it or not we are an oil-based economy, if you actual want to get us away from middle east oil in the short term than get some legislation through that will open up and encourage drilling in the ANWAR and off the coasts and development of the oil shale in the west. This coupled with an aggressive policy of building nuclear power plants and encourage the building of additional refining capacity will actually impact on our energy policy not deciding what light bulbs I use. Why do we let the Chinese drill in our backyard the Gulf of Mexico while we sit on the sidelines as your party is held hostage by the environmental movement?

This is just another symptom of what is wrong in Washington; instead of leadership and making tough calls we get feel good legislation that the politicians can feed back to their districts to show what great work they are doing, when in reality they are just kicking the can down the road.


Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Bali Climate Conference Done, Marxist Doctrine Exposed

The much touted climate conference is finally over in Bali. The global warming freaks finally showed their real stripes in what the game plan is. Their bottom line is to tax carbon emissions set up some phony carbon dioxide cap and offset program and have the wealthy nations help the poor and downtrodden. All of this is pure Marxist crap of income re-distribution and having everyone equal and no one unhappy. By trying to label Co2 as a pollutant and having government buy into this notion it gives these elites the ability to dictate industrial policy to the western industrialized world in particular the big bad USA. I’m so sick of these UN and nanny state bureaucrats trying to tell us how to live, act and work on a theory based on junk science. Remember these are the same people who back in the 70’s screamed like Chicken Little that the next ice age is coming. When the Goracle the new environmental rock star will sit down and debate the issue with real scientists I’ll be impressed but we all know he never will even with the 150K on the table to prove man made global warming on Junk Science. Check out the news on Global warming on -- Steven Milloy, Publisher and Not by Fire but by Ice. Also check out Mark Steyn, in the Daily Telegraph What planet are the eco-cultists on? - Telegraph. Here is some of the article “In the past third of a century, the American economy has swollen by 150 per cent, automobile traffic has increased by 143 per cent, and energy consumption has grown 45 per cent. During this same period, air pollutants have declined by 29 per cent, toxic emissions by 48.5 per cent, sulphur dioxide levels by 65.3 per cent, and airborne lead by 97.3 per cent. Despite signing on to Kyoto, European greenhouse gas emissions have increased since 2001, whereas America's emissions have fallen by nearly one per cent, despite the Toxic Texan's best efforts to destroy the planet.”

Saturday, December 15, 2007

NORAD Tracking Santa

NORAD will continue its holiday tradition started in 1955 tracking Santa Claus. The tracking will start 2:00 AM MTN on Christmas Eve, Below is the web site.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

F-22 Finally Operational

The F-22 Raptors at Langley AFB have reached full operational capability Dec 12, according to Gen John D.W. Corley, ACC Commander. So after more billions that you can count and many more dollars to spend to give it real air to ground capability, The USAF’s latest silver bullet is FOC with no one to fight and nothing to contribute to the current war on terror. Of course there are always those pesky Chinese that the Air Staff dreams of meeting air to air with their scarves on. I’ve never been a big fan of the F-22 because of the insane cost and the fact that only 183 are currently going to be bought. Instead of recapitalizing the fleet what we are doing by buying these expensive jets is effectively disarming ourselves. I still say we should have taken Boeing up on the offer of the F-15X proposed back in the late 90’s, a jet which would have been much like the Typhoon, but with an existing depot support structure and a proven design that would have been enhanced by modern avionics and known stealth technology.
Instead we have the Raptor, which may in fact have both corrosion and structural problems that will need to be adrresed sooner, rather than later adding more money to the cost. Check out the article in Air Force Times online.

(U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Ben Bloker)

Oath of Enlistment

This is a great shot and story of a patriot and hero. After watching all the freaks and draft dodgers on the History Channel show 1968 shots like this give me faith in the future. I actually feel sorry for the draft dodgers I saw in this show, they will never know the feeling that Sgt Moldovan and I felt every time we raised are right hand and repeated these words below.

I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.

Sgt. Jon Moldovan, reciting the oath of re-enlistment with Brig. Gen. Rodney Anderson (to left, not shown). Sgt. Moldovan, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, re-enlisted one day after he was wounded while helping his comrades wrest control of Musa Qala, Helmand Province, Afghanistan, from the Taliban.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Blast From The Past, F-82 Twin Mustang

Possible one of the strangest looking fighter ever, the F-82 served as an excellent bridge between the propeller driven fighters to the new jets in the late forties and early fifties.
The F-82 was developed at the end of WWI as a long-range fighter escort for the B-29 in the Pacific. It was finished prior to the war but did not enter squadron service until early 1946. The F-82 was based on the P-51 Mustang mounted to a newly designed center wing, tail and propellers, as well as having a unique four wheel landing gear. It reatined controls in both cockpits The night fighter version the F-82F replacecd the contols in one cockpit with a radar intercept set up. The Air Defense Command used radar-equipped F-82s quite extensively as replacements for the P-61 night fighter. During the Korean Conflict, Japan-based F-82s were among the first USAF aircraft to operate over Korea. The first three North Korean airplanes destroyed by U.S. forces were downed by F-82’s. The F-82’s ended their career as long-range escorts for SAC bombers in Alaska finally being withdrawn from service in 1953.

SPAN: 51 ft. 3 in. (15.62 m.)
LENGTH: 39 ft. 1 in. (11.9 m.)
HEIGHT: 13 ft. 10 in. (4.2 m.)
WING AREA: 408 sq. ft. (37.9 m²)
EMPTY WEIGHT: 14,914 lb. (6764.5 kg.)
LOADED WEIGHT: 24,813 lb. (11255 kg.)
MAX. OVERLOAD: 24,864 lb. (11278 kg.)
CRUISING SPEED: 280 mphMAX. SPEED: 482 mph (748 kmh)
SERVICE CEILING: 40,000 ft. (12192 m)
ARMAMENT: Six .50-cal. machine guns, 25 five-inch rockets, and 4,000 lbs. of bombs ENGINES: Two Packard V-1650s of 1,380 hp. ea.

Friday, December 7, 2007

A Date, Which Will Live In Infamy

Today is Dec 7, the 66th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor . Below is FDR’s speech to Congress on Dec 8, 1941.

Franklin D. Roosevelt's "Day of Infamy" Speech
To the Congress of the United States:

Yesterday, December 7, 1941 -- a date which will live in infamy -- the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.
The United States was at peace with that Nation and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with its Government and its Emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific. Indeed, one hour after Japanese air squadrons had commenced bombing in Oahu, the Japanese Ambassador to the United States and his colleague delivered to the Secretary of State of form reply to a recent American message. While this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or armed attack.
It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago. During the intervening time the Japanese Government had deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.
The attack yesterday on the Hawaiian Islands has caused severe damage to American naval and military forces. Very many American lives have been lost. In addition American ships have been reported torpedoed on the high seas between San Francisco and Honolulu.
Yesterday the Japanese Government also launched an attack against Malaya.
Last night Japanese forces attacked Hong Kong.
Last night Japanese forces attacked Guam.
Last night Japanese forces attacked the Philippine Islands.
Last night the Japanese attacked Midway Island.
Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday speak for themselves. The people of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our Nation.
As Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense.
Always will we remember the character of the onslaught against us.
No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.
I believe I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make very certain that this form of treachery shall never endanger us again.
Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory, and our interests are in grave danger.
With confidence in our armed forces -- with the unbounded determination of our people -- we will gain the inevitable triumph -- so help us God.
I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December seventh, a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese Empire.
Franklin D. Roosevelt
The White House, December 8, 1941
It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived. --Gen George S. Patton

(Pics USN, Battleship Row, Dec 7, 1941 and the USS Ronald Reagan and USS Arizona)

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Oil Prices Down Again, Does Anyone Know This?

The MSM shows how biased their reporting is again over the last few days. As crude prices went up through November and peaked near 100 dollars a barrel all we heard everyday from the usual suspects, CNN, CBS, ABC and the rest was the wailing of increased prices at the pump and who was to blame, blah, blah, blah.
But now over the last week oil has dropped back over ten dollars a barrel from the peak and you hear not one peep from the MSM. This evening on the Spot markets WTI Cushing closed at 87.49 a barrel and the NYMEX Crude Future was trading at 86.80. This pushed gasoline futures down to 225.75. Trending reports look like the price will continue a gradual drop. Can you imagine if the leftist and Eco freaks would actually let us drill the reserves that are available in this country were the price might be?

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Questions On The NIE Iranian Report

Many MSM outlets have been all twittering about the NIE calling the Iranian nuclear weapons program being currently frozen. I personally don’t by it for a number of reasons not the least being the lack of any substantial human intelligence assets in the Middle East for years dating back to the Carter administration. Remember it was the same intel type that couldn’t see the Iranian revolution coming and that is when we had people on the ground. Why would a regime that is dedicated to eliminating the state of Israel, who knows that no one expect the U.S. and Israelis are willing to step up and stop them give up a program that they claim is their right? Check out In From The Cold for his detailed report on this ttp:// and the article from the New York Sun.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Oakland 34, Denver 20,

Holy Cow, two in a row for my beloved Raiders against AFC west opponents. Even better beating the pesky ponies who had beat us 5 time in a row. The big news was Jamarcus Russel making his pro debut in the second quarter. One of the Denver defensive backs John Lynch said "He looked pretty good to me," "He looked poised. He's probably the biggest man I've seen at QB. He looks like he has a fluid arm." The game also saw another great performance by Justin Fargus with 146 yards on 33 carries. Who knows run the table and end up 8-8? I doubt it but i can dream.

Hope For Venezuela

Stalinist bastard Hugo Chavez was stunned in voting over the weekend loosing the constitutional referendum, which among other items would have allowed him to run for office an unlimited amount of times. This shoes that the spark of freedom some thought extinguished in Venezuela is still alive. Here is a link to the article.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Osprey Over Iraq

An MV-22B Osprey with Marine Medium Tilt rotor Squadron-263, flies over the Al Anbar province of Iraq during a mission out of Al Asad Air Base. Based at New River MAS the Thunder Chickens are conducting the first combat deployment of the MV-22.Official US Navy Photo.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Two T-6 Texan Trainers Collide and Crash

11/28/2007 - COLUMBUS AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Two Columbus Air Force Base T-6 Texan II primary trainers collided about 12:47 p.m. Nov. 28 near the Columbus AFB Auxiliary airfield in Shuqualak, Miss. At the time of the accident, the aircraft were conducting initial flight training operations. On-scene emergency response has located and confirmed all four pilots have parachuted safely. A board of officers will be appointed to investigate the accident. Additional details will be provided as soon as they become available.

(U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Jeffrey Allen)

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

What Is Wrong With Bush At Annapolis?

Any talk of more land for peace is just a pipe dream of many U.S. administrations including the current Bush administration. Inviting all of the usual suspect Arab countries the majority of whom will not recognize the State of Israel and who demand a retreat to the pre 1967 borders is nothing short of madness. The Palestinians have never honored any treaty or accord that has been signed and agreed to. The Syrians who were apparently building a nuclear weapon in the site that the IAF attacked 10 weeks ago have the gall to ask for the Golan Heights back after they were secured by the IDF after the Syrian participated in the 1967 war. As these talks proceed violent protests go on in Gaza and rockets continue to fall on Israeli towns. I guess Bush and Condi are worried about their legacy and Olmert and the left in Israeli have forgotten about how all this land was paid for in blood by brave Israeli soldiers.
Check out Caroline Glick’s article in today’s Jerusalem Post.

Andrew C. McCarthy has a great article on the Syrian problem in NRO.

Court Says US Border Inspections Of Muslims Were OK

Common sense prevails in the court on a case brought to the courts by NYCLU. I just don't understand some of these lawsuits a little profiling might not be such a bad idea in a war with fundamentalist Islam.

The Associated Press
Monday, November 26, 2007

U.S. immigration authorities acted constitutionally when they subjected dozens of people returning from an Islamic convention in Canada to screening tactics usually reserved for people suspected of being terrorists, an appeals court said Monday.
The court upheld the conclusion of a federal judge that the 2004 inspections, which involved frisking and fingerprinting, did not violate U.S. constitutional rights to practice religion and avoid unlawful searches.
"We do not believe the extra hassle of being fingerprinted and photographed — for the sole purpose of having their identities verified — is a significant additional burden that turns an otherwise constitutional policy into one that is unconstitutional," a three-judge panel wrote.
The New York Civil Liberties Union had sued on behalf of five New York residents who attended the "Reviving the Islamic Spirit" conference in Toronto. The NYCLU sought a court order to prevent similar inspections, along with destruction of personal information collected during the stops.
The residents were searched after telling border officers they had attended the Islamic conference. They were frisked, fingerprinted and photographed, and their cars were searched. They were required to fill out several forms and were questioned about their past travels, what occurred at the conference and why they attended it.
Each plaintiff was detained and searched for between four and six hours, after which he or she was released into the United States, the appeals court said.
The U.S. Bureau of Customs and Border Protection had received intelligence giving it reason to believe people with terrorist ties would be attending certain Islamic conferences during the 2004 year-end holiday season.
The court said the inspections were necessary because it was not possible for authorities to know who at the conference may have interacted and potentially exchanged identification or travel documents with people suspected of being terrorists.
NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman said she was upset by the ruling.
"The decision's deeply disappointing because the court refused to vindicate the rights of innocent American citizens who were detained at the border and treated as terrorists simply because they attended a religious conference," she said.
The NYCLU had not decided whether to appeal, she said.
The government had no immediate comment, Department of Justice spokesman Dean Boyd said.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Alaskan F-22’s Intercept Bear H

Alaskan based F-22 Raptors made their first intercept of a Russian Bear Bomber Thanksgiving day. Check it out on In From the Cold.

(U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Laura Turner)

Iraqis thwart enemy dressed as bride, groom

To good not to post. How desperate are the terrorists to get away?

By Sameer N. Yacoub - The Associated PressPosted : Monday Nov 26, 2007 9:53:52 EST

BAGHDAD — Suspicious Iraqi soldiers thwarted terror suspects disguised as a bride and groom trying to pass through a checkpoint along with their “wedding procession” outside the Iraqi capital, the Iraqi Defense Ministry said Monday.
The procession Sunday near Taji, about 12 miles north of Baghdad, raised suspicion among the soldiers because most of those celebrating were men, an official in the ministry told The Associated Press. Soldiers searched the car carrying the purported bridge and groom and discovered the “couple” were two wanted men: Haider al-Bahadili and Abbas Latif. Two other terror suspects were detained along with them, according to the Defense Ministry statement.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to ministry orders, said the investigation into the suspects was ongoing and declined to release further information.

(Photo Iraq Defense Ministry)

Monday, November 26, 2007

Oakland Wins Again!

Well the Raiders finally one another game and broke 3 bad streaks, first off they snapped a 17 game losing streak to the AFC West, they snapped 6 game slide and most importantly beat Kansa City for the first time in 9 games. If any of you can remember when this was a great game between the Raiders and the Chiefs, then you to are a long-suffering Raider Fan. With Vargas and his 139 yards he became the first Raider back in 29 years to rush for over 100 yards in K.C.
With luck the momentum will build and we can beat the Pesky Ponies next week at home.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

More Coalition Success in Iraq

More coalition success in Iraq,
Iraq – Coalition forces killed six terrorists and detained 10 suspects Tuesday and Wednesday during operations targeting al-Qaeda in Iraq leaders in central and northern Iraq.
Articles you will never see in your local fish wrapper or by the talking heads on TV are available daily at CENTCOM HQ. Here is the link for the whole story.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Fleet Week

Fleet Week went on as advertised despite some of the best efforts of the lunatic left in the San Francisco Bay Area. After the Iowa debacle I felt the Navy should pull the plug on Fleet Week, but an further reflection there are still decent people in the Bay Area that deserve to see a fine show and activities that center around the armed forces. Check out the pass photos from BZ of the Blue Angels #5 jet. Picture courtesy of BZ

AP Proves Again It Can’t Do Research

Last week the AP came out with a story sensationalizing desertion rates in the Army and Marine Corps. About 15 minutes of research would by the reporter would have found that we are not at the highest rate since 1980. But of course this would not fit the agenda of Iraq is a quagmire. The reporter also interchanges AWOL (Absence Without Leave) and desertion using the terms as the same thing when in fact they are totally different. Deserters of an all-volunteer force are the worst scum I can think of. After all you know what you are getting into, the ARMED FORCES!
Here is the original article Army desertion rate up 80 pct. since '03 - Yahoo! News and I’ll put up Alan Fraser reply that you can read on,
This is another indication why no ones buys newspapers anymore.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Strike Eagle Back In The Air

The Air Force announced today that the F-15E Strike Eagle grounding will be lifted as the aircraft complete a one-time inspection of hydraulic lines, certain longerons and panels near the ESC bays, this announcements only covers the Strike Eagle. I thought from day one that the Strike Eagle with its more robust frame would be the first jet released. According to local Seymour Johnson officials the Strike Eagles of the 4th Wing will start flying again on today. All other F-15 models A,B,C,D,J reamain grounded.

Pelosi and Dems Pass Another Surrender Bill.

Pelosi and the Dem majority passed what is basically an Iraq withdrawal bill. Once again this is a slap in the face of all service men currently deployed and faces a certain presidential veto if it somehow gets past the Senate.
My own House Rep Mike McIntyre who I have voted for more than once again, voted with the majority. Mike has passed himself off for years as a Blue Dog but ever since the surge resolution and even back to the fall of 2006 he has consistently voted with Pelosi and her ilk, voting to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Like it are not we are committed in Iraq and Afghanistan, our elected representatives should be doing all they can to ensure victory and the defeat of Islamic terrorists not only on the current AOR but around the world, they should not be pandering to the Code Pinks and other far left organizations. It’s almost hard to belive how many politicians have forgotten that just over 6 years ago over 3,000 of our fellow Americans were murdered by Islamic terrorists. The threat of Islamic terrorism will just not fade away; our enemies are relentless and patient. We need to accept the fact that this whole effort will be a long haul far into the future.

Here are the comments by Rep John Boehner’s after the vote:
“By Christmas, some 3,000 American troops will return home from Iraq after achieving remarkable success in our fight against al Qaeda. And how is Congress welcoming them back? By passing yet another politically-motivated measure that cuts off funding for those continuing to serve our nation in Iraq and hamstrings the commanders who are leading them to victory. This measure will never be signed into law, and it represents yet another failure for Democratic leaders intent on putting politics before accomplishment.
“Congress would be better served by sending the President the long-overdue veterans and troops funding bill, which enjoys broad, bipartisan support in both the House and Senate. But the Majority leadership has played politics with this critical legislation, stalling its completion to take up today’s cynical proposal to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in Iraq. Consequently, returning troops and their families will face more hurdles and take more time to get the housing and health care benefits they deserve – all thanks to Congress.
“Under General Petraeus’ strategy, our troops are routing al Qaeda in Iraq, improving security for the Iraqi people, and laying the foundation for critical political reconciliation in that country. Congress should not undermine this success and risk having al Qaeda stand back up. Instead, Members of both parties should recognize that the Petraeus plan is working, continue to solidify our troops’ gains, and work to bring them home after victory, not defeat.”

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

State Department Appeases Cowards In Their Ranks

A little over a week ago the State Department announced that they were going to send Foreign Service Officers to Iraq to fill up the various open positions. If they did not get enough volunteers they would force chosen individuals to go. I did not pay too much attention to this until the FSO had a town hall style meeting and wailed and moaned about Iraq being a death sentence, all this to fill 48 slots. Well the whiner’s and cowards seem so far to have gotten their way as it was announced today that the State Department will extend the window to try and keep from forcing unwilling candidates to go to Iraq.
An incident like this is one reason why most military members have such a low opinion of diplomats, they talk and the GI bleeds. As far as I’m concerned give the assignments if you don’t want to go resign or be fired. Can you imagine if the Armed Service’s put up with this kind of B.S? Now not all FSO’s are worthless check out the smack down article by FSO John Matel and a complete follow up and background on Michelle Malkins blog.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Great Shot from Iraq

Why do we never see pictures like this in our local fish wrappers? Thanks Blackfive for the shot


Brazil announces new oil reserves

This is great news, light crude coupled with the Brazilians expertise in deep water extraction can only help the oil futures market and hopefully start a sell off by the crazed speculators. Make you wonder how much oil is actually off our own coast that we cant touch thanks to years of interference by the liberal Democrats and their environmental wacko allies.

King Carlos of Spain Hits Nail On Head

Chavez the communist thug who has set himself up as the dictator in Venezuela (No wonder the left love him) was running his mouth at the recent Latin Summit being held in Santiago Chile. King Juan Carlos said what huge numbers of people feel. With any luck diminishing Venezuelan oil production coupled with huge borrowing and bad oil deals with China plus the recent student protests may fuel an uprising that topples this dirt bags regime and return Venezuela to a true democracy.
In this vein, Jimmy Carter (Noted Anti Semite and failed President) should hang his head in shame if that is possible for legitimizing the Chavez elections in 1998 and 2000, 2004. Carter and all other scumbag leftists that love and embrace Stalinist thug dictators around the world should all be run out of town on a rail.

ARMY Lt Awarded Distinguished Service Cross

Since the MSM won’t carry stories about American heroes I will.

Story and photo from the Army News Service:

Nov. 2, 2007: First Lt. Walter B. Jackson [Oak Harbor, Washington] became the seventh Soldier since the Vietnam War ended in 1975 to receive the Distinguished Service Cross for extraordinary heroism in action.
Secretary of the Army Pete Geren presented the DSC, which is second in precedence to only the Medal of Honor for valor in battle, at a ceremony held in the Pentagon’s Hall of Heroes this afternoon.
A second lieutenant at the time of his heroic action on Sept. 27, 2006, Lt. Jackson was cited for selfless courage under extreme enemy fire while serving as a company fire support officer with company A, Task Force 1st Battalion, 36th Infantry Regiment in Al Anbar Province, Iraq.
Lt. Jackson was engaged in combat operations with his unit against insurgents and while he attempted to recover a disabled vehicle, his unit came under heavy machine gun fire, which resulted in several Soldiers being wounded. As he applied first aid to a severely wounded comrade, he too was shot in the thigh.
Lt. Jackson’s citation in part reads: “Upon regaining consciousness after being shot, second lieutenant alternated between returning fire and administering first aid to the Soldier. Second Lt. Jackson was hit again with machine gun fire as he helped carry his wounded comrade to safety, but he never faltered in his aid. Although his own severe wounds required immediate evacuation and surgical care, 2nd Lt. Jackson refused medical assistance until his wounded comrade could be treated. Second Lt. Jackson’s selfless courage under extreme enemy fire was essential to saving another Soldier’s life and is in keeping with the finest traditions of military service…”
Before the presentation, Lt. Col. Thomas C. Graves, former Task Force commander, recounted part of that September 2006 day when he arrived at the medical aid station to see his wounded Soldiers and the first words to come from 2nd Lt. Jackson were of concern for the wounded captain he’d rescued.
“All the leadership schools, classes and years of experience never really prepare you for that moment in time when you are standing among heroes who have given their all, where their first concerns still remain with their fellow Soldiers,” he said. “It reinforces duty and commitment unlike any other experience.”
After Secretary Geren made the award presentation, 1st Lt. Jackson spoke to the packed room, humbly thanking his family, his West Point classmates and the Soldiers he’s served with in his short two-year career and saying simply, “I believe I just had to do what I had to do in that situation… I think many Soldiers would have done the same thing.”
1st Lt. Jackson has been recovering from his wounds at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, having undergone more than a dozen surgeries. While recovering at WRAMC, he volunteered as an intern with the Judge Advocate General’s office. He is awaiting orders to take over a multiple launch rocket system platoon in Korea with the 2nd Infantry Division Fires Brigade.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Happy Birthday USMC

Today the United States Marine Corps celebrates its 232nd birthday, on November 10, 1775; the Continental Congress passed a resolution stating, "two battalions of Marines be raised" for service as landing forces with the fleet. This established the Continental Marines and marked the birth of the United States Marine Corps. The first Marines were recruited at Tun Tavern in Philadelphia PA. I’m thankful that I had the opportunity to go through recruit training at Parris Island in 1978 and serve in the USMCR. The things I learned there and the discipline helped me throughout my twenty plus year career in the active USAF.

A special birthday congratulations to my daughters boyfriend and his fellow Marines of Delta Company “OUTLAW” 2nd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, none of these men are POGS.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Reaper drops first precision-guided bomb, protects ground forces

By Staff Sgt. Trevor Tiernan U.S. Central Command Air Forces Public Affairs 11/8/2007 -

SOUTHWEST ASIA (AFPN) -- The MQ-9A Reaper demonstrated it's unique precision strike capability as a hunter-killer attack platform by dropping its first precision-guided bomb Nov. 7. "The beauty of the MQ-9 Reaper is that we're able to synchronize and integrate unmanned aerial attack platforms over the skies of Afghanistan, allowing us to persistently and consistently track the enemy and ensure that we place the appropriate ordnance on target when required, and maintain that persistent presence after weapons release," said Lt. Gen. Gary North, U.S. Central Command Air Forces commander. The Reaper, the Air Force's unmanned aerial attack vehicle, was operating over the Sangin region of Afghanistan on the hunt for enemy activity when the crew received a request for assistance from a joint terminal attack controller on the ground. Friendly forces were taking fire from enemy combatants. The JTAC provided targeting data to the pilot and sensor operator, who fly the aircraft remotely from Creech Air Force Base, Nev. The pilot released two GBU-12 500-pound laser-guided bombs, destroying the target and eliminating the enemy fighters. The ability to carry bombs, in addition to AGM-114K Hellfire missiles, is just one of the features that set the Reaper apart from its smaller brother the MQ-1 Predator. "The MQ-9 gives us an incredible addition to the arsenal," General North said. "It's larger, carries an increased payload and is able to fly longer, higher and faster. It's an incredible addition to our attack capability in the CENTAF force lay-down." The Reaper has flown 49 combat sorties since it first began operating in Afghanistan Sept. 25. It completed its first combat strike Oct. 27, when it fired a Hellfire missile over Deh Rawod, Afghanistan, neutralizing enemy combatants.

Monday, November 5, 2007

USAF Suspends Non Critical F-15 Operations

(Update 11/07)
Kyodo News
The Japanese Air Self-Defense Force has grounded its F-15 fighter jets since Sunday following a recent crash of the same type of aircraft in the United States, Defense Minister Shigeru Ishiba said Tuesday.

Ishiba told reporters that ASDF commanders ”instructed the suspension of flights of F-15 aircraft Sunday afternoon for the time being” until the cause of the crash is determined.

(Update 11/06) It looks like the forward fuselage had a structural failure. Its hard to tell but it appears from picture on KCTV5, St Louis that the forward fuselage had separated before it hit the ground.

Following the crash of a Missouri ANG F-15C from the 131st FS last week all non-critical F-15C/D/E operations have been temporarily suspended as a precautionary measure. This is not the first time in the Eagle or for that matter any first line fighter aircraft that has either had its operations limited or even grounded until the defect was found and inspected for. In my career I saw this happen a few time and the results were usually a one time inspection of the other aircraft in the fleet to make sure they are free of whatever defect was determined to be the main contributing factor to the accident. The preliminary investigation in this case indicates a structural failure may have occurred. Here is the article from

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Blast From The Past F-104 Starfighter

I’ve always liked the F-104, my first exposure was as a small boy hearing the sonic booms of the F-104’s flying out of Hamilton AFB CA and seeing them fly over our house. The F-104 was designed by Clarence “Kelly” Johnson of the Skunk Works after input he received from pilots during the Korean War. The F-104 entered USAF service in 1957 with Air Defense Command, was surprisingly used in Vietnam and was finally retired from service with the Puerto Rico ANG in 1975. While the Starfighter was never very popular with the USAF it saw extensive service with many allied nations, to include Canada, Belgium, Netherlands, Greece, Pakistan, Turkey, Germany, Denmark, Greece, Japan, Taiwan and of course Italy.
I saved Italy for last since the Italian Air Force only retired the last of their F-104ASA aircraft in 2004 after over 40 years of service. The S stood for Sparrow was a modification to allow the Starfighter to carry the Aim-7 air-to-air radar guided missile. In the mid 80's the Italians upgraded some of their S models to the F-104ASA standard which was an avionics modification to achieve look down and shoot capability, these were the aircraft I would see periodically parked at transient alert when I was stationed at RAF Lakenheath in the late 90’s.
Length 54 Ft 8inches
Height 13 ft 6 inches
Wingspan 21 Ft 9 inches
Max Takeoff weight 29,027 pounds
Engine, General Electric J-79 afterburning turbojet, 15,600 pounds of thrust in burner
Max Speed 1328 mph
Service ceiling 50,000 Ft
Armament, 1 20mm M-61 Vulcan, 4 sidewinders (2 Sparrow F-104S) and up to 4000 pounds of other stores.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Keep the C-17 Line open

All I can say is the C-5A needs to go to the bone yard yesterday. Use the funds to re-engine the C-5B’s, upgrade the avionics and build more C-17’s. Kennedy and Biden are both tools that just happen to have C-5 units in their states. There is a great common sense op ed on the subject by Congressman Jim Saxton. Strategic airlift is what we need now not more F-22’s.
Here are links to both articles

(Photo USAF)

Westboro Baptist Church Loses Case

In what I thought was a great verdict the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka KS was found liable by a jury in Baltimore, Maryland for invading the privacy of the Snyder family at their son Marine Lance Corporal Mathew Snyders funeral. For those of you who don’t know the members of this church have been harassing family members at funerals of our fallen servicemen for years now. They hold up signs and shout slogans like “ Thank God for Dead Soldiers” and “America is Doomed”, they claim that the soldiers deaths are a result of Gods punishment for the tolerance of homosexuals in the military.
Their antics have brought about great operations like the Patriot Guard Riders who have been invited to many funerals and provide a screen against the people from Westboro Baptist. The Patriot Guard Riders try to ensure that there is respect at the funerals of our fallen hero’s and I take my hat off to them. Words cannot describe the loathing I have for the members of this so called church that show such disrespect to our hero’s.
Check the Patriot Guard Riders out at the link below and the link to the Baltimore Sun article.,0,7191706.story

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

CBS News, Unfit Again

When you read the articles and watch the hit job on Airpower used in Afghanistan on CBS news keep a few things in mind. We are at war civilian deaths are unfortunate but unavoidable. With today’s precision engagement any collateral damage in reduced significantly from any other bombing campaign. Take a look at the 20th Air Force fire raids in Tokyo in May 1945 or any of the heavy strategic bombing in Germany by the mighty 8th. Finally look how we actually took down the Taliban; it was by Airpower directed by Combat Controllers and other Special Forces units that rolled up their forces and allowed the U.S. to do in weeks what the Russians could not do in years. President Karzai would not be in power today without the reach and force that can be brought to bear with Airpower. But with CBS anything to show how evil the U.S. is par for the course.

Monday, October 29, 2007

CSAR Helicopter to be re-bid

This whole process is just dragging on and on. I always thought the initial selection of the MH-47 was a joke with its huge rotor wash and other technical issues. Hopefully the Air Force will end up with a solid modern helicopter sooner rather than later before all of the MH-53's crap out.

Fire Trucks

Some people have asked me what other items of interest are you going to post on? Well it fire trucks. I’ve been a volunteer firefighter for almost 20 years, serving communities around the country during my AF career. I’ll post some shots of the first rigs I rode up to the present day and periodically trucks that catch my eye or have unique capabilities. Today’s trucks are the first trucks I ever made calls on while still in high school. This is when I was member of the Harrods Creek Fire protections District, located in Louisville KY. The engine is unit 1233 a 1250 GPM Mack CF-600, the ladder is also a Mack CF-600 with a 100 foot ladder. I tell the new guys today about riding the tailboard back in the day and they have no idea what I’m talking about.


10/28/2007 - SOUTHWEST ASIA (AFPN) -- Coalition airpower integrated with coalition ground forces in Iraq and the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan during operations Oct. 27, according to Combined Air and Space Operations Center officials here. In Afghanistan, the Air Force's newest unmanned aerial vehicle, the MQ-9 Reaper, conducted its first precision combat strike sortie, targeting enemy combatants in Deh Rawod with a hellfire missile. The strike was reported as successful. The Reaper's primary mission is as a persistent hunter-killer against emerging targets in support of joint force commander objectives. The MQ-9's secondary mission is to act as an intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance asset, employing sensors to provide real-time data to commanders and intelligence specialists at all levels.
(Photo USAF)

Pentagon Offers Huge Bonuses to Hold Onto Top Warriors

I really don't see what the problem here is. The DoD has offered bonuses through the years to keep hard to fill specialties full. This is just another version of this except that it targets SNCO's who are almost retirement eligible. Makes sense to me to pay these hard to replace professionals bonuses for extensions of service.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Modern American Hero LT Michael Murphy

LT Murphy a Navy SEAL gave his life trying to protect his men. Below is the citation from his Medal of Honor
" I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country"
Nathan Hale

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor to Lieutenant Michael P. Murphy, United States Navy, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life, above and beyond the call of duty, as the leader of a special reconnaissance element with Naval Special Warfare Task Unit Afghanistan on 27 and 28 June 2005.

While leading a mission to locate a high-level anti-coalition militia leader, Lieutenant Murphy demonstrated extraordinary heroism in the face of grave danger in the vicinity of Asadabad, Konar Province, Afghanistan. On 28 June 2005, operating in an extremely rugged, enemy-controlled area, Lieutenant Murphy's team was discovered by anti-coalition militia sympathizers who revealed their position to Taliban fighters. As a result, between 30 and 40 enemy fighters besieged his four-member team.

Demonstrating exceptional resolve, Lieutenant Murphy valiantly led his men in engaging the large enemy force. The ensuing fierce firefight resulted in numerous enemy casualties, as well as the wounding of all four members of his team. Ignoring his own wounds and demonstrating exceptional composure, Lieutenant Murphy continued to lead and encourage his men. When the primary communicator fell mortally wounded, Lieutenant Murphy repeatedly attempted to call for assistance for his beleaguered teammates. Realizing the impossibility of communicating in the extreme terrain and in the face of almost certain death, he fought his way into an open terrain to gain a better position to transmit a call. This deliberate heroic act deprived him of cover, exposing him to direct enemy fire. Finally achieving contact with his headquarters, Lieutenant Murphy maintained his exposed position while he provided his location and requested immediate support for his team.

In his final act of bravery, he continued to engage the enemy until he was mortally wounded, gallantly giving his life for his country and for the cause of freedom. By his selfless leadership, courageous actions, and extraordinary devotion to duty, Lieutenant Murphy reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

More Riots In Eurabia

Unknown to many Americans there has been violence and rioting in Brussels and Amsterdam-west over night since Oct 14. The trouble started when Dutch police shot and killed a 22-year-old Moroccan man who had made a knife attack against two officers. These riots are a direct result of years of appeasement by wave after wave of socialist governments. When I lived in the Netherlands in the late 80’s immigration by Muslims was just beginning to show some problems within Dutch society. Hopefully this will wake some folks up so they can deal effectively with the ongoing problems caused by lax enforcement of any immigration standards.
For more information check out the links.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Old School Hero, Col Joseph Kittinger

I read an article the other day about Michel Fournier and his attempts to break the record for highest parachute jump from a balloon. His attempt is now scheduled for August 2008 I belive he will be 65 or 66 at the time; my bet is this never happens.
Col Joseph Kittinger, USAF (Ret) holds the record he set back on August 16, 1960.
Then Captain Joseph Kittinger jumped into the record books after his dive from a height of 102,800 feet (31,334 meters). The jump set records that still stand today--the highest parachute jump, the longest freefall, and the fastest speed ever attained by a human through the atmosphere. Kittinger's was part of a USAF research program that helped study the physiological issues of high altitude flight and the ability of man to escape.

Friday, October 19, 2007

More USAF planes to carry small bomb

This headline caught my eye on the USAF AIM point site. The only question I have is how much will this modification cost to get what the last Chief of Staff called the F/A-22?
I still get a laugh over all the cheerleading and money that was poured down the F-22 black hole. While the Raptor will probably be a great fighter plane, unless we actually build another 180 or so jets we will have effectively disarmed ourselves. With a squadron of say 20 jets you always end up with at least one down for phase, one hard broke and a rotating hanger queen. In the event of the balloon going up on the Far East (the only real adversary to think about) you suddenly have 34 jets in PACAF to deploy with. I don’t care what the cheerleaders say the kind of sortie count that can be generated will help but not be earth shattering. Makes you wonder why we didn’t build the F-15X, which as proposed would have been a new build Eagle incorporating many new avionics systems, new wing, engines and offering up to 90% of the ATF spec at the then claimed fly away costs of under 75 million
The original concept of the then ATF was to build 700 or so silver bullets for use against the Warsaw Pact. Well the wall came down the Pact dissolved and suddenly the F-22 was the answer to a question no one was asking. The Air Staff still wanted it’s new toy so development continued but weight was gained, prices kept going up, and some testing is alleged to be incomplete or insufficient based on the original spec. While all this was going on budget fights persisted. I saw many viable airframes sent to the bone yard with either no replacement or at best a stop gap fill in just to keep F-22 funding intact. A partial list includes the F-4G Wild Weasel, EF-111 Raven, continued flying of ancient C-130E, and KC-135E, delays in acquisition of a new CSAR helicopter, and many more programs for new hardware on the existing fighter and transport/tanker fleet, all this to get us 180 new jets. I say that the fighter mafia at ACC sacrificed the force for their new plane.
As an old maintainer I would like to see the actual FMC (Fully Mission Capable) stats now on the F-22 and see were we are 3-4 years down the road. One of the items touted is how much less in needs maintenance hours wise compared to the Eagle. Shoot it’s brand new everything should work great for the first 500 hours or so, having said this I would like to look at MBTF on the radar ad ECM because without these systems fully functional the jet is like any other expensive flying club airplane. With its incredible long journey in development I would also be curious to parts obsolescence in the avionics systems.
If the goal is to build more Raptors then do it and build more E models now and start updating the radar and ECM on existing airframes because we still will need real fighter bombers that can deliver the big boys (GBU10/28, AGM- 30) when required. The answers to these points will be well down the rode. I just hope all the hype about the Raptor is true. If it is the F-22 will stand out as the first jet fighter in history to meet its expectations. The article is below.

BY: GAYLE S. PUTRICH , Defense News, 10/19/2007

The U.S. Air Force is slowly expanding the slate of planes that carry the small-diameter bomb (SDB), starting with the F-22 Raptor.
A Raptor test-dropped an SDB in late September at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. Another flight test is expected by month’s end, according to Air Force sources.
“Current planning is for basic SDB F-22 capability in the 2014 time frame,” said a service representative via e-mail.
The SDB, a 250-pound guided weapon designed to strike fixed targets from standoff range while causing little collateral damage, has been in use since November. It is only carried on the F-15E Strike Eagle.
Adding the SDB to the Raptor’s arsenal is more complex than other aircraft because the stealthy fifth-generation fighter carries weapons in an internal bay rather than on external pylons.

(Photo USAF)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Local 72 Year Old Takes Down Suicide Bomber

Great story on how a local man takes down a bomber. I wonder if it will make any MSM broadcast?

2nd BCT, 3rd Inf. Div.Multi-National Division – Center PAOFORWARD OPERATING BASE KALSU, Iraq – A 72-year-old man stopped a suspected suicide bomber from detonating himself at a checkpoint in Arab Jabour Oct. 14. The man approached a checkpoint where Mudhehr Fayadh Baresh was standing guard, but did not make it very far.
Baresh, a tribal commissioner and member of the Arab Jabour Concerned Citizens program, said he ordered the man to lift his shirt - using training received from Coalition Forces - when he did not recognize him as a local villager.
The suspect refused to lift his shirt. Baresh repeated the command again, and the suspect exposed his suicide vest, running toward the checkpoint.
Baresh opened fire which caused the vest to detonate, killing the suspect.
“I did it for the honor of my family and the honor of my country,” said Baresh, when he met with Col. Terry Ferrell, commander of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division.
Lt. Col. Kenneth Adgie, commander of the 1st Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment presented Mudher with a battalion coin for his valor Oct. 16.

Pakistan plans all-out war on militants

If this article is on the money we may finally find out what happened to that scumbag
Osama Bi Laden. I personally don’t think he is alive, either dead by his ailments or buried in a cave in Tora Bora. If the Pakistanis are serious they can be the hammer and we will be the anvil that the Taliban are beat on.
A little iron rain on Taliban positions.
(USAF Photo)

F-16 At Sunset

A 148th Fighter Wing F-16 Fighting Falcon from the Minnesota Air National Guard . (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Donald

Monday, October 15, 2007


The USAF newest UAV the MQ-9 Reaper has now flown over a dozen sorties in Afghanistan. The Reaper is much larger than the Predator, has nine time the range, carries a much larger munitions load and can fly twice high

General Characteristics Primary Function: Unmanned hunter/killer weapon system Contractor: General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc.
Power Plant: Honeywell TPE331-10GD turboprop engineThrust: 900 shaft horsepower
Wingspan: 66 feet (20.1 meters)Length: 36 feet (11 meters) Height: 12.5 feet (3.8 meters) Weight: 4,900 pounds (2,223 kilograms) empty
Maximum takeoff weight: 10,500 pounds (4,760 kilograms)
Fuel Capacity: 4,000 pounds (602 gallons)
Payload: 3,750 pounds (1,701 kilograms)
Speed: cruise speed around 230 miles per hour, (200 knots)
Range: 3,682 miles (3,200 nautical miles)
Ceiling: up to 50,000 feet (15,240 meters)
Armament: Combination of AGM-114 Hellfire missiles, GBU-12 Paveway II and GBU-38 Joint Direct Attack Munitions
Crew (remote): Two (pilot and sensor operator)
(Photo and Stats USAF)

Sunday, October 14, 2007

60th Anniversary Of Chuck Yeager Breaking The Sound Barrier

Today is the 60th anniversary of Chuck Yeager’s flight in the Bell X-1 rocket plane in which he broke the sound barrier. He was able to reach 670-mph or Mach 1.015 at Muroc Dry Lake, California, after being air launched from a B-29.
Back on Sept 21, Gen Yeager celebrated the 60th anniversary by breaking the sound barrier again in an F-16 over Edwards AFB.CA

Friday, October 12, 2007


The F-100 was the first of a long line of the century series fighters. It was developed in the early 50’s as a supersonic day fighter and entered service with the USAF in November 1954. The Hun was built in 4 different variations culminating with the single seat D and two seat F. The Hun was used in Vietnam primarily as a ground attack jet. In Vietnam the Hun F model was also used as Fast FAC (Forward Air Controller) and a highly modified F was used as the first Wild Weasel that dueled with SAM sites using the AGM-45 Shrike missile. One interesting fact on Hun crew, Col. George (Bud) Day who is the Air Force most decorated pilot flew F-100’s in Vietnam. Other users included Taiwan, Denmark, Turkey, and France. The last use in USAF Service was as drones (QF-100) primarily at Tyndall AFB FL.

F-100D Specs
Crew 1
Length 50 Ft
Wingspan 38 ft 9 inches
Height 16 Ft 2 3/4/ inches
Empty Weight 21,000 Lbs
Max Takeoff Weight 34, 382 lbs
Power plant P&W J-57 16,00 lbs max thrust in afterburner
4 x 20 MM cannon
4 AIM-9 Sidewinders
up to 7040 lbs of bombs and other munitions.

(USAF Photo)

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Japan to deploy F-15s in Okinawa amid China concern

The Japan Air Self Defense Force will be deploying F-15J Eagles to Okinawa to replace an F-4 unit. See the article at,

Eagle On Patrol

Some nice shots from Air Force Link,
Capt. Matt Buckner, an F-15 Eagle pilot assigned to the 71st Fighter Squadron at Langley Air Force Base, Va., flies a combat air patrol mission Oct. 7 over Washington D.C. in support of Operation Nobel Eagle. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Samuel Rogers)

EL AL To Equip All Their Jets With Updated Counter Measures

In an interesting announcement today El Al the Israeli State Airline announced that it would equip all of its jets with new state of the art anti-missile counter measures. This is an upgrade to the current Flight Guard system that is flying today. The main threat comes from hand held portable missiles (manpads). These missiles include the SA-7 and SA-14 and older Stingers and the new generation SA-18. In 2002 Al Qaida-linked terrorists launched two SA-7 manpads against an Israeli charter flying out of Kenya.