When All Marines are Mud Marines

USMC EGA eagle globe and anchorThat day is rapidly approaching when the Marines’ fabled “Every Marine a Rifleman, uh, Rifle Entity” slogan will be literally true: when the last few flyable Marine jets and helicopters join the 70% that are already down for maintenance and lack of spare parts.

In some cases, like the non-Super F/A-18s, spare airframe parts have not been made in such a long period of time that Marines have to raid museums for them.

Sometimes it takes the Marines 18 months to get parts for early model F-18 jets whose production was halted in 2001.

“We are an operational squadron. We are supposed to be flying jets, not building them,” said Lt. Col. Harry Thomas, Commanding Officer of VMFA-312.

But hey, the Marine-hating Secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus, has a plan. He’s going to replace the parts, and the 30,000 Marines that he’s dumped, who otherwise might have installed them, with genuine fabulous fairy dust, thanks to his laserlike focus on transgender toilets for all.

It’s not like cutting corners has real consequences, eh?

Lt. Col Harry Thomas, call sign “Crash,” deployed to the Pacific with 10 jets last year. Only seven made it. A fuel leak caused his F/A-18 to catch fire in Guam. Instead of ejecting, he landed safely, saving taxpayers $29 million.

You know, if Thomas flew an operational mission and lost three of his jets, Mabus would have him canned. If he loses three jets because Mabus diverted O&M funds into social engineering, well, crickets then, and how do you like your fierce new tranny cans?

But hey, that was the low point, right, 7 of 10 jets operational. Just about anywhere, 70% is passing, and Ray Mabus grades on a curve so it’s an A…

But that wasn’t the low point:

Right now only two of his 14 Hornets can fly. His Marines deploy in three months.

“We are supposed to be doing the type of maintenance like you would take your car to Jiffy Lube for replacing fluids, doing minor inspections, changing tires, things of that nature, not building airplanes from the ground up,” he added.

Marine jet pilots are down to 4 hours a month, less than Chinese or Russian peers and down from 25-30 hours in the air BM, which seems like a suitable acronym for Before Mabus.

What they’re doing with the spare time is unclear, but odds are it’s attending SHARP briefings or working on flash cards of the fifty-odd Genders-with-a-capital-G that Mabus’s Navy considers superior to the ancient Cismale Heteronormative Patriarchy.

The latest Beltway Brainstorm is just to keep flying 1980s- and 90s-vintage F/A-18s, already committed to fly 2,000 hours beyond their design life of 6,000 hours, to 10,000 hours or more.

And the Marines’ helicopters? Apart from a baker’s dozen tiltrotor squadrons, which finally allowed the retirement of the last LBJ-era CH-46s last year, they operate patched and bandaged 1970s versions of  Vietnam War types.

 

26 thoughts on “When All Marines are Mud Marines

  1. Jjak

    Warfighting isn’t a priority, hasn’t been since since January 2009. Whole world was supposed to reset to perfection due to fairy dust and rainbow unicorn crap. Reality is less happy. Budget debacles and stupid social engineer and non-strategy piled on to bad leadership.

    Ships rusing away at pierside, nukes mismanaged, nearly every procurement plan a bloated delayed failure…. What else is falling apart we don’t know of yet?

  2. Aesop

    Electing utter amoral douchebags has consequences, and minions like Mabus are simply a symptom of that disease.

    There is nothing magical in this country that prevents the thinking along the lines that perhaps a coup would be preferable to another election, and most particularly among people with command of well-armed troops.

    When you’ve spent nearly eight years underlining that it’s okay to lie to get what you want, and disregard laws as mere annoyances to hurdle, rather than as guardrails against stupidity, exactly the wrong sort of people tend to learn that lesson, take the ball and run with it, and pin it into your liver by way of a graduation present.

    Secretary Mabus had probably better start employing a food taster and private security, or he’s liable to wake up one morning in Fort Marcy Park with a revolver in his hand and seven bullets in his head, in a clear act of suicide.

    1. CJ

      There was a Duffleblog post not too long ago about Gen Mattis crossing the Potomac with 100,000 troops. Come November, he’ll be my write-in choice.

  3. DAN III

    The question in my mind is why are we continuing to expend what’s left of our blood and treasure, continuing to execute wars of imperialism in the Middle East and Africa ? What is the threat to national security ?

    Too bad the equipment is junk. But that is what you get when a nation is in perpetual warfighting since 1991.

    1. Worker

      No – not to make too fine a point on it but this is what we get when most of society is more concerned about their personal pleasure (of whatever nature), economy tanking, people struggle to make ends meet and our ‘leaders’ (an oxymoron for sure) are more concerned about PC speech/pleasing their money sources and more concerned with their own ability to reap the profits of ‘elected office’. To enhance your point, constant ‘war’ has bleed us dry to the point that most just don’t care anymore …… this is why we are screwed as a nation all the while the wolf (that would be the other powers to be) are licking their lips at our demise.

  4. Jim

    I don’t want to live on this planet anymore…

    Sucks that in 2016 we have no functional space program, so I cant go find a different one to try. Hell, we can even afford to fly planes apparently. Guess I’ll just keep being exasperated and here.

  5. robroysimmons

    American Empire delenda est.

    That dream aside this issue is probably about shoveling money to Lockheed (ticker symbol LMT) and their fabulous new aircraft the F-35. I don’t really follow these issues all that much but I do read SNAFU.

    Way off topic give me a small nation with favorable terrain, MANPADS, good comms, Javelins/Gustavs and some really sweet small arms and you can keep your Pentagon and your world policing politics.

  6. SemperFido

    My beloved Corps has always had to make do with leftovers. Goes back to when my Uncle was a Raider fighting the Japs. Maybe before that even.
    The pointy end of the spear is rusty and blunted. The Russians and Chinese must be laughing themselves silly at our stupidity.
    And I thought things post Vietnam were bad.

    1. A.B. Prosper

      Marine aviation deserves better. In a perfect world they would be given a bigger budget and the A-10 program as well.

      Regardless aren’t going to war with China or Russia. China basically makes everything we use and Russia will use nukes if we end up on their soil . On top of that we cannot afford it, we can’t even maintain our own roads and infrastructure to a high degree.

      The US will be a third world nation with a 2nd tier economy and a 3rd world demography in a few decades in any case. It won’t matter since at best our military will be on par with Russia, maybe.

      No sense getting worked up over it, pull back cut back and live with smaller,, less intervention and a small national defense that is for defense.

  7. Bibliotheca Servare

    fan-f*cking-tastic. fantastic. “Well, yes our equipment is falling to pieces, but guess what? We have females in combat specialties, so errythings shiny dude!” (errythings = everything’s without the v or the apostrophe) “And hey, fewer operational planes means less “greenhouse gases” right? So we’re fighting *that* critical war *much* more effectively, right? Right…?” A noose is too effing good for Carter, Maybus and their fellow despicable examples of human waste. No, impalement on a rounded stake is what they deserve, if there were such a thing as justice. Sadly, there isn’t, so what they’ll *really* get is a nice, heavily padded retirement. One can pray for charges of treason to be filed, followed by a bullet after conviction, but one can pray for the ability to fly, as well. Both are highly improbable, but the “ability to fly” one has a slightly higher likelihood of actually occurring. *breathes deeply* Okay, I’m finished.

  8. Pingback: WeaponsMan: Marine Aviation Being Strangled | Western Rifle Shooters Association

  9. Jaque Bauer

    Obama an his Comrads are guilty of Treason. The closest 5 star to Obama should order his arrest and detention for crimes against the government and aiding and giving comfort to the enemies of the US in time of war.

  10. Pingback: When All Marines are Mud Marines | WeaponsMan – The Americanist

  11. Mark Dietzler

    Marine C model Hornets are not the only ones having issues with parts. The Nave ones are as well, but the Navy is gradually replacing them with new E/F models. I retired from an aircraft carrier in 2014, and the air wing attached to my old ship doesn’t have any legacy Hornets.
    http://www.cvw9.navy.mil/aircraft.html
    The Marines need to start buying Supers, in a hurry.
    As to the Super Stallion, there is a new model of that in development, the CH-53K.
    I am familiar with the concept of retrieving parts from static display aircraft, my 2003-2007 squadron tour was in Prowlers, a then 30 year old airframe, and those were only retired from Naval service this year. The Marines are, of course, still flying them.

    1. Aesop

      Sh’yeh, sure, buy Supers with all that money they saved by cutting new AAVs to replace their legacy 1970s amtracs, right?
      Oh, too late, they had to spend that cash on the F-35 Thunderjug, a plane so fabulous it’s only 20 years late and still not mission-capable, nor ever will be.

      Or, they could cancel the USMC part of the F-35 program, and let the Navy and Air Farce have the non-VTOL ones. And for a sweetener, transfer all the A-10s, parts, and trained personnel from crew dogs to pilots straight across to the USMC. All the A-10 needs to be USMC-approved is to weld a bayonet locking lug on the pitot tube, and hang a set of TruckNutz on the ventral centerline.

      1. Brad

        Admittedly some of the USMC wounds were self-inflicted, the AAV project primary among them.
        The fact is using AMTRAC of any type has been an obsolete method for transporting infantry during an amphibious assault since the adaption of turboshaft engined helicopters.

        What the USMC has really needed for decades for amphibious assault is a true amphibious tank (and the AAV is a pretty awful tank), a need even more dire with the boneheaded Clinton administration elimination of the all the LST ships.

        So I googled amphibious tank and found this article…

        http://www.gizmag.com/darpa-fang-winner/27213/

      2. bloke_from_ohio

        A sneaky supersonic VTOL jet is an exercise in satisficing that should have never been embarked upon.

        The Marine version of the F35’s is a nearly completely self inflicted wound. And the USMC’s obsession with VTOL inflicted that wound on the USAF and USN. The appeal of VTOL and the doctrinal push for the Corps to handle not just its own air support but also air defense are understandable. And on paper the F-35 is the perfect platform for that purpose when you consider the Marines are always chasing a capability to fight from tiny airfields or HLZ’s. Reality will likely not bear that out.

        The USAF and USN variants share the fuselage shape from the Marine model. The wide profile of the fuselage violates the area rule of aerodynamics. The body is built as wide as it is to make space for the lift fan that is needed to accomplish VTOL. This makes the plane turn like a barge. It makes it impossible for the pilot to look behind himself. And lastly it eats up space that should be used to carry weapons. I don’t know what the USAF and USN put in that space, but it is not bombs.

        The other challenge the USMC requirements force on the other services is weight. The need to lighten the bird for use in VTOL probably forces some less than stellar design choices when it comes cutting gear dedicated to redundancy. The weight restriction of the VTOL capability also forces the designers to forgo a second engine. This eliminates redundancy and puts more stress on the single engine it has. This is especially true since that single engine has to play helicopter without the benefit of rotor blades while also being able of pushing the jet to supersonic speeds. Make no mistake the Lightning’s engine produces a ludicrous amount of thrust, but putting two slightly less powerful engines together would lead to better overall performance and redundancy.

        In short the Marines made a bad choice and the other services are stuck with it. That does not absolve the USAF or USN from their own poor requirements choices, but the USMC hosed up the fuselage design and not much can be done to fix it.

        1. Aesop

          Let’s be fair: the Marines never asked for a single multi-service airframe. That choice was foisted upon them by Clinton SecDef idiot-savant Les Assholepin, last seen telling the Army and Delta that they didn’t need AC-130s or armor support in Mogadishu in September 1993, just before his far-too-late-to-do-any-good resignation and subsequent richly-deserved death.

          Blaming the F-35 on the Marines is about like blaming the Hindenburg on the Wright Brothers.

          All you’ve actually done is catalogue all the reasons not to make that decision that Assholepin ignored before his fiat decision to overrule the laws of physics, aerodynamics, and common sense, in a move that should have gotten him the MacNamara Medal with F-111 clusters, and burial at Arlington National Cemetery, just underneath the men’s urinals.

      3. bloke_from_ohio

        I wonder if a Warthog could handle CATOBAR operations. The catapult would not be kind to the nose gear. Mind you the A-10 can land wheels up and fly again with little effect since the wheels protrude even when stowed. And the whole plane is overbuilt to a point just shy of comedy. I just don’t know if the landing gear was designed to CATOBAR specs. Anything with a tail hook can probably land on a carrier a few times but the controlled crash that the Navy calls a landing is hell on the landing gear and related equipment.

  12. Buckaroo

    You have to give Obama credit. It’s hard to imagine that he could undermine our border security and military readiness any more thoroughly, while simultaneously keeping it off the radar screen of 99% of the population. A true genius at subversion. I personally think he has had outside help, as nobody is this good on his own.

    1. Aesop

      That “help” would be the mainstream media, helpfully and deliberately oblivious since the Spring of 2008 on his behalf.

  13. Joe

    The takeover of what was once These United States has long since been completed. The Communist Revolutionaries
    (see the current puppets err administration),
    that accomplished it are simply bleeding the Counter- Revolutionaries (that would be us the liberty lovers) by a death by a thousand cuts methodology. And guess what? It’s working. Working well. The Elections, polls, money, sweat, political yard signs, 3rd party candidates, NRA, RNC, Trump, Cruz, A new SECDEF, SECNAV, POTUS, or a booming economy isn’t going to fix it.

    Only this will.

    When my people which are called by my name will humble themselves and pray, I will hear them and heal their land.

    1. Grandpa

      ….the part about turning from their sin, before the “humble themselves…” is a key component, not to be left out.

  14. Keith

    Book recommendations, both by Tom Kratman who sometimes posts here; “State of Disobedience” and “Caliphate” both published by Baen.

    This country used to be a God fearing nation and was blessed accordingly. Not anymore IMHO. Also I see a lot of this being the ultimate expression of the post Cold War “peace dividend” movement.

Comments are closed.