Shot: USAF Dumps Airborne Training
With all the discussion we’ve just had about how the Air Force’s priorities are not National Defense priorities, let alone the priorities of the ground combat Services, we hear that the USAF has decided to save money by cutting the USAFR C-130 wing at the former Pope AFB (now Pope Army Air Field at Fort Bragg).
Soon to be a rarer sight at Bragg: SF troops doing a routine static line drop without combat equipment (“Hollywood”).
The airborne units at Bragg (82nd Airborne Division, much of 18th Corps, and various US Army Special Operations Command and Joint Special Operations Command elements) will now have to truck or bus 230 miles (3 ½ hours by charter bus, 5 hours by Army truck) to Charleston, SC, and the Air Force will condescend to fly the paratroopers back to Bragg while the trucks or buses convoy back empty. Meanwhile, a second set of trucks and buses will have to be spotted on the DZ… or maybe the guys can just walk back from the field.
What the USAF is hoping, of course, is that the paras will stop jumping so damned much. They need to use the money to pay for the cost overruns on the F-35 program, so that there will still be jobs at LockMartNorGrumBoeing for retired flag officers. For some values of the word, “job.”
The SOF guys will just contract lift, with a sigh of relief. Working with AMC’s rigid regulations and inflexible aircrews is always exasperating anyway.
The 82nd and 18th elements will jump less, sacrificing currency and proficiency to reduce the negative effect on training (and, naturally, training budgets). So we’ll wind up with more jump accidents, a dry term that often means some guy is dead on the DZ with injuries that defy description, or off to the ICU screaming, with his hipbones in his eye sockets (which is only a slight exaggeration).
The wing at Bragg, the US Air Force Reserve’s 440th Airlift Wing, is going away; the Air Force isn’t even helping the displaced reservists find new jobs. The US Air Force Reserve’s commander, Lt. General JJ Jackson, is visiting the base, but appears to be going out of his way to snub the second-class airmen of the 440th.
Jackson, the chief of the Air Force Reserve and commander of Air Force Reserve Command, will be on post to speak to Fort Bragg leaders, but he did not plan to meet with members of the 440th as of Friday afternoon, several airmen said.
“He has no intention of meeting with the airmen under his command,” one of them said. “That should tell you the level of leadership being demonstrated by him.”
Sounds like he’s enough of his weasel that his fourth star’s a lock.
The full story is here (WRAL) and here (Fayetteville Observer).
Chaser: But That’s OK Because Training is No Longer a Priority
Wait, if training isn’t a priority, what is? Well, what would you expect from a never-served politician and bozo like Ash Carter? Something like this:
The Pentagon is ordering the top brass to incorporate climate change into virtually everything they do, from testing weapons to training troops to war planning to joint exercises with allies.
A new directive’s theme: The U.S. Armed Forces must show “resilience” and beat back the threat based on “actionable science.”
It says the military will not be able to maintain effectiveness unless the directive is followed. It orders the establishment of a new layer of bureaucracy — a wide array of “climate change boards, councils and working groups” to infuse climate change into “programs, plans and policies.”
The Pentagon defines resilience to climate change as: “Ability to anticipate, prepare for, and adapt to changing conditions and withstand, respond to, and recover rapidly from disruptions.”
To four-star generals and admirals, among them the regional combatant commanders who plan and fight the nation’s wars, the directive tells them: “Incorporate climate change impacts into plans and operations and integrate DoD guidance and analysis in Combatant Command planning to address climate change-related risks and opportunities across the full range of military operations, including steady-state campaign planning and operations and contingency planning.”
The directive, “Climate Change Adaptation and Resilience,” is in line with President Obama’s view that global warming is the country’s foremost national security threat, or close to it.
We have military assistance and aid operations that are being bungled in many nations, and direct combat operations being bungled in Libya and the Iraq/Syria theater, procurement bungled nearly everywhere, and operational readiness and maintenance at Grand Duchy of Fenwick levels. And so what do the pitiful pols in the puzzle palace promote as policy?
The directive is loaded with orders to civilian leaders and officers on specifically how counter-climate change strategy is to permeate planning.
“This involves deliberate preparation, close cooperation, and coordinated planing by DoD to provide for the continuity of DoD operations, services and programs,” it states.
“The DoD must be able to adapt current and future operations to address the impacts of climate change in order to maintain an effective and efficient U.S. military,” it adds. “Mission planning and execution must include anticipating and managing any risks that develop as a result of climate change to build resilience.”
Climate change must be integrated in:
• Weapons buying and testing “across the life cycle of weapons systems, platforms and equipment.”
• Training ranges and capabilities.
• Defense intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance.
• Defense education and training.
• Combatant commander joint training with allies to “assess the risks to U.S. security interests posed by climate change.”
• Joint Chiefs of Staff collaboration “with allies and partners to optimize joint exercises and war games including factors contributing to geopolitical and socioeconomic instability.”
How’s about we “assess the risk to US security interests” posed by incompetent political hacks in policy positions, like the author of this idiotic diktat, Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Frank Kendall, the bozo that signed off on it, Deputy Defense Secretary Robert O. Work, or the stumblebum architect of the whole laughable enterprise, Defense Secretary Ash Carter.
But hey, as you read this, Frank Kendall is fapping to the news that the carbon footprint of C-130 paratroop and heavy-drop training at Fort Bragg is headed towards zero.