Saturday, April 07, 2012

Would the proponents of the F-35...

...please explain their selection in the context of this quote from real analysts?

Russian choices have been guided by a consistent Western tactical air defense plan that has been centered on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. Delays in the JSF program have now given Russia more than 20 years to prepare for its initial operational capability date.
(for "Sukhoi" Edstock)


Edstock said...

I've said it before: a Sukhoi with Canadian engines and electronics would do just fine.

Hell, if we still had the tooling, a new series of AVRO CF-100 Canucks with 2012 electronics and turbo-fan-by-pass engines would be ideal for far north aviation. Supersonic Stealth is not a requirement, toughness is.

Robert hennecke said...

The ongoing controversy in Canada over the bureaucratic decision to procure the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, in preference to conducting an open competition to select a replacement aircraft for Canada's fleet of obsolete and worn out CF-18A Hornets, bears careful scrutiny. The parallels between the bureaucratic behaviours observed in Canada surrounding the F-35, and like behaviours in the Canberra DoD bureaucracy, are remarkable. The mismatch between the F-35 and Canada's strategic needs is fundamentally no different from the mismatch between the F-35 and Australia's strategic needs. Both nations are gravitating into a black hole which will see their respective air forces emasculated and unable to perform their primary mission of protecting national airspace from foreign air forces1.

This also means the Australian Defence Force will not meet the strategic directives of successive Australian Defence White Papers, and will not achieve air superiority in the regional environment.
The F-35 is an aircraft which was defined as a battlefield interdictor, intended to attack and destroy hostile battlefield ground forces, once opposing air defences have been stripped away by the much more capable, and now cheaper F-22 Raptor. The JSF aircraft was defined for a very narrow niche role, and its intended performance and capabilities were constrained to avoid overlapping other US Air Force capability niches, such as “deep strike” occupied by the F-15E and F-22A, and “air dominance”, occupied by the F-22A.
The actual F-35 aircraft, as it has “devolved” through a problematic and protracted development process, shows all the signs of falling well below the promised and mediocre performance targets set in the original definition document. This is largely the result of cumulative and failed efforts to control weight and unit procurement costs, and also the failed effort to achieve high commonality between variants intended for radically different deployment regimes2.

The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is now a prime example of a poorly defined design which is being poorly implemented. It remains a funded program primarily due to incessant political protection by the United States OSD (Office of the Secretary for Defense) which has for the last several years shielded the program from proper scrutiny, while systematically working to shut down production of every possible alternative design being built by US industry, including the vastly superior and far more cost effective F-22A Raptor.
The behaviour of the OSD in relation to the F-35 program is clearly irrational from the perspectives of maintaining US and Allied strategic weight in air power, and maintaining essential diversity in the industrial base. However, it is the well understood behaviour of a bureaucracy that has blundered badly and wishes to protect itself from criticism. Such is the power of Janis' Groupthink, in organisations where it is actively fostered and promoted by the leader, in this instance the Secretary himself. By all conventional measures applied in project management, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter clearly and unequivocally qualifies in all respects as a “failed project”, but survives as the political credibility of the OSD and its Secretary have been wedded by prior actions to the survival of the project.

Robert hennecke said...
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Boris said...

Mr. Hennecke,

There is no need to spam my comment sections with long pieces unattributed text about the JSF. If you have links, feel free to post and/or summarise them neatly. This is also excellent fodder for a blog of your own.

Furthermore, I know nothing of your personal dealings with Ms. Stephenson and the RCMP nor do I care to. Do not mention these here.