What Frank Kendall Has To Say About F-35

Since Boeing’s twenty five hour flight test of certain upgrades part of the Advanced Super Hornet concept, F-35 critics have been aflutter. The commentary across the internet has been incredibly entertaining, with some believing the ASH development is a done deal, and will soon become part of a carrier air wing. Well campers, Frank Kendall, Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics had a few things to say that will put a damper on the mouthbreather driven celebration across the interwebs.

“I don’t see any indication that the Navy is going to change its plans in any fundamental way”

Considering Under Secretary Kendall is the acquisition swami within the Department of Defense, I would put stock in what he says. Simply put, the Navy isn’t abandoning the F-35C.

“The F/A-18 is a great airplane, but it’s a fourth generation fighter. The F-15 is a great airplane, the F-16 is a good airplane, but they’re fourth generational fighters, and you get a quantum improvement in capability out of the F-35, it’s why we’re buying them.”

This is the quote I expect ASH promoters to really hate, if not outright claim its propaganda. There, you have the DoD’s Acquisition and Technology chief making very clear that a fourth generation platform has a capability gap with a fifth gen. platform. At the end of the day, no matter what you slap on a fourth generation platform, think Silent Eagle or ASH, what you have is a more expensive fourth generation platform based on an aged design. This dovetails with a quote from General Welsh, Air Force Chief of Staff.

“When a fifth generation fighter meets a fourth generation fighter, the latter dies. We can’t just dress up a fourth generation fighter as a fifth generation fighter.”

Sorry campers, prospects for the ASH replacing the F-35C aren’t looking good, not that this will bring your commentary to a halt I’m sure.



~ by arcturus415 on September 5, 2013.

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