70% of Marine Aircraft Can’t Fly

Only one in three can fly.
Only one in three can fly.

The Marines are the most prestigious of the services and the oldest and proudest which may be why they are the main target of Barack Obama. Since 1775, the U.S. Marine Corps has prided itself on being “The Few” and “The Proud,” but now they are decimated. In the least, it makes no strategic sense.

Seventy percent of the Marine aircraft can’t fly, that’s not even one in three. Decisions to cut are made based on budget not threat assessments.

This comes as Russians come within 30 feet of a US Navy ship and do barrel rolls over it, the Military Times reports.

In one of the most aggressive actions in recent memory, Russian warplanes conducted “simulated attacks” on the a U.S. Navy vessel in the Baltic Sea on Tuesday, repeatedly flying within 30 feet of the ship, according to a defense official.

They created wakes in the sea because they were that close and it’s becoming more and more frequent but we get crickets from DC outside of some minion saying it’s “unprofessional” even though it likely violates a 1973 treaty.

The Baltic States should be very concerned.

Jennifer Griffin, a reporter for Fox News, and Pentagon Chief for Fox, Lucas Tomlinson, found that the vast majority of Marine Corps aircraft can’t fly. Budget cuts preclude the purchase of the parts needed to fix an aging fleet. Only 30% are ready to fly, aircraft are being pushed to their limits and maintenance have been forced to cannibalize museum aircraft or use hand-me-downs from the Army and Navy.

OV-10 Bronco being taken out of museums for use in the fight against ISIS.
OV-10 Bronco is being taken out of museums for use in the fight against ISIS.

General Amos is trimming the Marine Corps from 202,000 Marines to at least 182,100 due to budget cuts, Military1 reports. They’re likely not done. Amos wants another nearly 10,000, reducing the Marines to the fundamental unit of the corps.

Amos is accused of deliberately bringing down morale and the quality of life for Marines while making re-enlistment unappealing. It’s referred to as Amos’s Reawakening.

The budget cuts and General Amos’ Reawakening will, within a matter of a few years, utterly wipe out that institutional knowledge and the force will be back to being made up of combat virgins.

A majority of Marine Corps aircraft can’t fly, prompting Marine officials to warn that the aviation corps is reaching a “breaking point,” Fox News reported. White House press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters he doesn’t know the state of the aircraft but the cuts are Republicans’ fault. Republicans agreed to the Sequestration but Obama has also made his own cuts.

Marines forced to raid a museum for aircraft parts.
Marines forced to raid a museum for aircraft parts.

The state of the aircraft:

  • Out of 276 F/A-18 Hornet strike fighters in the Marine Corps inventory, only about 30% are ready to fly, according to statistics provided by the Corps. Similarly, only 42 of 147 heavy-lift CH-53E Super Stallion helicopters are airworthy.
  • There are 30,000 fewer Marines and there aren’t enough to do the added work needed.
  • Cannibalization, or taking parts from one multi-million dollar aircraft to get other multi-million dollar aicraft airborne, has become the norm.
  • To get one Hornet flying again, Marines at Beaufort stripped a landing gear door off a mothballed museum jet. The door, found on the flight deck of the World War II-era USS Yorktown, was last manufactured over a decade ago.
  • 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, a Marine Corps F/A-18 squadron based at Beaufort.
  • “This last 30 days our average flight time per pilot was just over 4 hours,” said Thomas. Ten years ago, Marine Corps pilots averaged between 25 and 30 hours in the air each month, according to one pilot. “This is the worst I’ve seen it.”
  • Planes that are supposed to last 6 years are being pushed to 10.

They obviously aren’t ready for combat or even capable of training flights.

Lt. Col. Thomas told Fox News that he deployed last year to the Pacific there was a fuel leak causing his Hornet to catch fire in a training exercise over Guam, he could have legitimately ejected. Instead, the Teufelhunden chose to gamble on landing his stricken aircraft. Which he did, and also saved the American taxpayers $29 million worth of jet.

He risked his life to save the plane.

Fox News 6 is reporting that in yet another Obama cost cutting move, the Pentagon is calling back to service the 50-year old retired OV-10 Bronco turbo-prop for service against the ISIS Islamic Jihadists in Syria and Iraq.

While Republicans agreed to the Sequestration which Obama forced through along with his own massive cuts. Another $1.2 trillion in military cuts will take place over the next ten years unless we get a president who understands the need to have a strong military to avoid wars.