The Russian Raptor

Gee, does this aircraft look, um, familiar?

Russia Unveils Its First Stealth Fighter

Russia on Tuesday unveiled its first stealth fighter to the public, lifting the curtain on a secret project designed to flood the market with cheaper versions of better-known US jets.

The Sukhoi Tu-50, being developed jointly by Russia and India, made its maiden flight at a Far East airbase in January 2010 and was rolled out for public viewing at the MAKS international airshow outside Moscow.

Two of the sleek silver prototypes are due to perform air stunts Wednesday under the watchful eye of Russia’s powerful prime minister, Vladimir Putin, in a show of Russian military confidence in the much-delayed project.

“The T-50 jet will provide the backbone not only of the Russian air force but also that of India,” said Mikhail Pogosyan, president of United Aircraft Corporation, the state aviation holding company.

See also:
T-50 Fighter to Be Unveiled at MAKS
Russian Next Generation Stealth Fighter Unveiled at Air Show
Russian stealth and euro efficiency at MAKS airshow
Russia Set To Show Off Its First Stealth Fighter
Introducing The T-50: The Russian Stealth Fighter That Will Be Unveiled This Week
Indo-Russia T-50 stealth fighter to make its international debut
Russia sees orders for fifth generation jet from 2015
Russia set to show off its first stealth fighter
What does Russia’s fighter debut mean for the U.S.?
MAKS 2011
MAKS Airshow
Sukhoi Company (JSC)
Sukhoi PAK FA

So, Russia and India are going to mass produce the Sukhoi Tu-50 and “flood the market”. Meanwhile, we/ve stopped producing the F-22 Raptor and have funneled all or resources into the technologically inferior, ridiculously expensive, cost overruns from hell, F-35 Lightning II program, a program that’s now grounded while still only in the testing phase because it sucks so bad!

/what’s wrong with this picture?

Chinese Stealth?

As usual, it appears that the Chinese have been putting their stolen Western technology secrets to good use. Check out their new J-20 “stealth” fighter, look familiar? While it may be based on stolen Western technology, there’s questions as to how “advanced” it really is. One thing’s for sure, the damn thing is huge, as fighters go!

Chinese J-20 Stealth Fighter In Taxi Tests

China’s first known stealth aircraft just emerged from a secret development program and was undergoing high-speed taxi tests late last week at Chengdu Aircraft Design Institute’s airfield. Said to be designated J-20, it is larger than most observers expected—pointing to long range and heavy weapon loads.

Its timing, Chengdu’s development record and official statements cast doubt on U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates’s 2009 prediction (in support of his decision to stop production of the Lockheed Martin F-22) that China would not have an operational stealth aircraft before 2020.

The debut of the J-20 was announced in a November 2009 interview on Chinese TV by Gen. He Weirong, deputy commander of the People’s Liberation Army Air Force. The general said a “fourth-generation” fighter (Chinese terminology for a stealth fighter) would be flown in 2010-11 and be operational in 2017-19.

The J-20 is a single-seat, twin-engine aircraft, bigger and heavier than the Sukhoi T-50 and the F-22. Comparison with ground-service vehicles points to an overall length of 75 ft. and a wingspan of 45 ft. or more, which would suggest a takeoff weight in the 75,000-80,000-lb. class with no external load. That in turn implies a generous internal fuel capacity. The overall length is close to that of the 1960s General Dynamics F-111, which carries 34,000 lb. of fuel.

See also:
China ‘leaks’ sneak peek of first stealth aircraft going for a test run
A Chinese Stealth Challenge?
China Builds J-20 Stealth Fighter Prototype
China’s stealth jet is no cause for alarm: US
Reports Of China’s Stealth Fighter Come As Pentagon Proposes Cuts
‘Stealth’ Chinese Fighter Jet Photos No Accident
China’s J-20 stealth fighter on film
J-20 Stealth Fighter Jet: 5 Facts About China’s New Stealth Plane
China Uncloaks Stealth Fighter Prototype
China’s J-20 fighter conducts taxiing test in Chengdu; photos+
Chinese Stealth Fighter: J-20 Stealth Fighter vs. F-22 Raptor in 2018?

Well, thank God that Obama and Gates canceled the F-22 Raptor program, eh? We have less than 200 of them and we’re not making any more. Now, some may argue that the J-20 is no match for the F-22. However, as history has shown, what the Chinese lack in quality, they more than make up for in quantity.

/although the exact number of simultaneous targets that the F-22 can track is classified, it’s a large number, but it’s still a finite number, and the Chinese are well known for their indifference to casualties in order to achieve an objective

Caught Pants Down With All Our Eggs In One Basket

Remember less than a year ago when Obama and Robert Gates cancelled the F-22 Raptor progam, the world’s premier air dominance fighter, which was already in service, because it was a “waste [of] billions of taxpayers dollars”? In their infinite wisdom, the dynamic defense duo decided to gamble almost America’s entire air combat future on a single, unproven design, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, that has yet to be put into production and won’t enter service in the foreseeable future.

Well, guess what?

GAO analyst says cost overruns, delays continue to plague F-35 program

A congressional auditor said Thursday that the Joint Strike Fighter, the Pentagon’s most expensive weapons program, “continues to struggle with increased costs and slowed progress,” leading to “substantial risk” that the defense contractor will not be able to build the jet on time or deliver as many aircraft as expected.

Michael Sullivan, the U.S. Government Accountability Office’s top analyst on Lockheed Martin’s jet fighter, also known as the F-35 Lightning II, told the Senate Armed Services Committee in a hearing that the cost of the program has increased substantially and that development is 2 1/2 years behind schedule.

The United States plans to buy about 2,400 of the fighter jets for the Air Force, the Marine Corps and the Navy. The projected cost for the program appears to have increased to $323 billion from $231 billion in 2001, when Bethesda-based Lockheed won the deal, according to Sullivan. Eight other countries — Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Turkey, Canada, Australia, Denmark and Norway — also plan to buy the jets.

The cost to build the plane is now expected to be $112 million per aircraft, according to a GAO auditor.

Sullivan said the program’s “negative outcomes” were “foreseeable as events have unfolded over several years.” He said that the cost increases are largely because Lockheed and the Pentagon are “trying to invent things and build them at the same time,” leading to costly changes in how the plane is being developed, built and tested. That continues to take “more time, money and effort than budgeted.”

He criticized the Defense Department, saying it “does not have a full, comprehensive cost estimate for completing the program,” and noted that it has “fallen short” of its expectations year after year. He said, “Constant program changes and turbulence have made it difficult to accurately and confidently measure progress and maturity of the aircraft system.”

See also:
Pentagon: F-35 fighter jet cost doubles
UPDATE 2-Price of Lockheed’s F-35 fighter soars
F-35 Fighters Now Double the Cost
Cost of F-35 Has Risen 60% to 90%, Military Says
Pentagon tells Senate panel that F-35 is more than 50 percent over cost
DoD: F-35 costs rise at least 50 percent
Joint Fighter Faces Critical Period
Donley: No JSF Alternatives Exist
Air Force: F-35 jet delayed by 2 years
Air Force: F-35 will be delayed, to cost significantly more
Joint Strike Fighter
F-35 Lightning II | Lockheed Martin
F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) Lightning II
F-35 Lightning II
Joint Strike Fighter Program

It continues to amaze me as to how they fit all those government clowns into such a tiny car.

/as far as birds go, it’s quite clear now that one F-22 Raptor, already in the hand, is worth way more than two F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, still in the bush

Obama Does A Happy Dance On The Raptor’s Grave

    Did Obama really say that a measly $1.75 billion to build seven more F-22 Raptors, the world’s premier air dominance fighter, was wasteful and that we couldn’t afford it? How wasteful is a $1 trillion “stimulus” fiasco that can’t be shown to have “created or saved” one job and spends money on ridiculous nonsense like $1.191 million for sliced frozen ham , $1.5 million on mozzarella cheese, and almost $17 million on canned pork? Or how about another trillion dollars for socialized healthcare that will degrade the overall level of medical care in this country and which the Congressional Budget Office has calculated will only increase our already unsustainable budget deficits and national debt, can we afford that?

    Are you [expletive deleted] kidding me, we can borrow trillions of dollars to fund every Democrat and left wing pet project ever conceived, trillions it’ll take a miracle for us to ever hope to repay, and yet we can’t spend a comparative drop in the bucket $1.75 billion to defend ourselves against the Chinese and Russians, because it’s wasteful and we can’t afford it? We can’t spend $1.75 billion to save tens of thousands of highly skilled F-22 Raptor design and manufacturing jobs, because it’s wasteful and we can’t afford it, but we can spend more than $50 billion to bail out inept car companies to save Obama’s UAW buddies and their gold plated pensions?

    Obama and the Democrats’ spending policies and priorities are not only depraved and thoroughly disgusting, they border on psychopathy and criminal insanity.

    Shooting Down The Raptor

    Defense Spending: The TARP bailout may hit $24 trillion, but the Senate says the F-22 is too expensive to build and maintain. So why are the Japanese so desperate to buy this “unnecessary” Cold War weapon?

    By a vote of 58-40, the Senate on Tuesday voted to remove $1.75 billion set aside in a defense bill to build seven more F-22 Raptors, adding to the 187 stealth technology fighters already in the pipeline.

    After some hope the production lines would be kept open, the Senate succumbed to arguments by the administration and others that the fighter was too expensive, too hard to maintain and not built for the wars America is fighting these days.

    President Obama welcomed the Senate vote, saying he rejected the notion that the country has to “waste billions of taxpayers dollars” on outdated defense projects.

    Well, the inspector general in charge of overseeing the Treasury Department’s bank-bailout program now says the massive endeavor could end up costing taxpayers almost $24 trillion in a worst-case scenario. Yet we can’t afford to build just seven more F-22s?

    Keeping the F-22 production lines open would be a real stimulus saving real jobs. Lockheed Martin, the main contractor, says 25,000 people are directly employed in building the plane, and another 70,000 have indirect links, particularly in Georgia, Texas and California. Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., a supporter of the program, says there are 1,000 suppliers in 44 states. That’s wasteful?

    Speaking to the Economic Club of Chicago last Friday, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates repeated his assertion that “the F-22 is clearly a capability we do need — a niche, silver-bullet solution for one or two potential scenarios — specifically the defeat of a highly advanced enemy fighter fleet.”

    But the “F-22, to be blunt, does not make much sense anyplace else in the spectrum of conflict,” he added.

    Air dominance is not a “niche scenario,” and while we’re lucky the Taliban does not have an Air Force, other potential opponents do. It would prove quite useful over the skies of North Korea, if necessary, or in thwarting a Chinese threat in the Taiwan Straits. Gates forgets that it was high-tech “Cold War” weapons such as the stealthy F-111A that shattered Saddam Hussein’s air defenses and infrastructure and controlled the skies during Operation Desert Storm in Iraq.

    Retired Lt. Gen. Michael M. Dunn, chief executive of the Air Force Association, notes that in last year’s conflict in Georgia, the Raptor was the only aircraft in our inventory that could have penetrated the defended airspace and had a chance of surviving.

    The F-22 Raptor is also perhaps the only plane that could evade the sophisticated S-300 surface-to-air missile defense system Russia has contracted to sell Iran. Russia’s S-300 system is “one of the most lethal, if not the most lethal, all-altitude area defense” systems, according to the International Strategy and Assessment Service, a Virginia-based think tank.

    Gates and the Pentagon prefer the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. But many believe its lesser abilities have been further compromised by making it a one-size-fits-all aircraft for all services in all conflicts.

    Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., in whose state final assembly occurs, says, “The F-35 was designed to operate after F-22s secure the airspace and does not have the inherent altitude and speed advantages to survive every time against peers with counter-electronic measures.”

    In an interview with Human Events, Japanese ambassador Ichiro Fujisaki said Tokyo wants F-22s to replace its aging F-4s and F-15s. Japan is facing an increasingly capable and unstable North Korea armed with nuclear weapons and the weapons to carry them. It also confronts a future superpower in China, with which it has territorial disputes.

    Japan wants the F-22 to deal with both threats. It will soon have to deal with fifth-generation Chinese fighter aircraft and aircraft carriers to carry them. Japan is wise to prefer the F-22, which can fly 300 to 400 mph faster and two miles higher than the F-35.

    We would be too.

    See also:
    Obama victory: Senate votes to kill additional F-22 funding
    Obama Praises F-22 Funding Shut-off; Sen. Chris Dodd Upset
    Senate Votes Against Funding For New F-22s
    Senate kills production of F-22 Raptor
    Senate votes against F-22 Raptor
    Senate strips extra F-22 funding from defense bill
    Senate Votes To Halt Production Of F-22 Fighter Jet
    Governor Rell blasts U.S. Senate vote to strip F-22 Raptor funding
    We Cannot Afford to Lose the F-22
    Obama Plucks The Raptor
    The Air Force Association (AFA)
    International Assessment and Strategy Center
    S-300 (missile)
    S-300PMU
    S-300PMU (SA-10) Air Defence Missile System
    Israel’s Red Line: The S-300 Missile System

    Well, hey, that’s another $1.75 billion that Obama can now spend on ham and cheese.

    /for the first time in my adult life, I’m not proud of my country

Spending Priorities

Remember two weeks ago when Robert Gates announced major cuts to the U.S. defense budget, including canceling the F-22 Raptor program and slashing the spending for ballistic missile defense?

See also:
Obama Plucks The Raptor
Disarming America

Well, well, well, we can’t afford national defense but look at what Obama and Congress saw fit to spend $5.7 billion on.

Obama signs service bill, says volunteers needed

Calling on Americans to volunteer, President Barack Obama signed a 5.7 billion US dollar national service bill yesterday that triples the size of the AmeriCorps service program over the next eight years and expands ways for students to earn money for college.

“We need your service, right now, in this moment in history. … I’m asking you to stand up and play your part,” said Obama, a former community organizer in Chicago. “I’m asking you to help change history’s course.”

Joining Obama was Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, who has been battling brain cancer. Kennedy championed the legislation with Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, and the bill was named in honor of the Massachusetts Democrat.

Kennedy told the audience that included former President Bill Clinton, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former first lady Rosalyn Carter that Obama’s efforts echoed that of his late brother, former President John F. Kennedy.

Obama signs national service legislation

President Obama signed into law Tuesday a measure designed to strengthen national community service efforts by boosting federal funding for thousands of volunteers in fields ranging from clean energy to health care and education.

The Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, recently renamed to honor the Massachusetts senator’s sponsorship of the measure, will more than triple the number of positions in the AmeriCorps program, from 75,000 to 250,000, by 2017.

“Our government can help to rebuild our economy … [but] we need Americans willing to mentor our eager young children, or care for the sick, or ease the strains of deployment on our military families,” Obama said.

“All that’s required on your part is a willingness to make a difference. And that is, after all, the beauty of service. Anybody can do it.”

Kennedy, his niece Caroline Kennedy, former President Bill Clinton, and former first lady Rosalynn Carter were in attendance when Obama signed the measure into law at a Washington-area school that encourages volunteerism as part of its curriculum.

The law creates four national service corps and launches several other initiatives, including, among other things, a “Summer of Service” program to spur greater community outreach by middle- and high-school students.

Older Americans will also be encouraged to volunteer more through the creation of a “Silver Scholars” program, under which individuals 55 and older who perform 350 hours of service receive a $1,000 award.

See also:
National service bill gets Obama’s signature
Service Bill Signing a Tribute to Kennedy
Obama Signs $5.7 Billion National Service Bill Into Law
H.R.1388
AmeriCorps

President Barak Obama Signs Historic Volunteerism Act into Law

Today, President Barack Obama signed into law the historic Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, heralding the next phase in the nation’s renewed call to service. With the signing, America’s local, regional and national service programs and nonprofit organizations are now poised to expand to further meet the nation’s most pressing challenges.

“We applaud Congress and President Obama on this important bi-partisan legislation that will change the course of history and civic responsibility in our country,” said Michelle Nunn, CEO, Points of Light Institute and co-founder of HandsOn Network, the largest volunteer management and civic engagement organization in the country. “Just as importantly, we applaud the countless volunteers and community organizers across the country that have supported the President’s call to service by advocating for this new legislation.”

Can’t you just smell ACORN? I’m all for volunteerism as long as it’s, well, voluntary. There are plenty of private organizations that do plenty of good volunteer work. Do we really need a quarter million person government “volunteer” force of “community organizers” or other make work jobs that aren’t really volunteers but paid/bribed with awards, stipends, or tuition, etc.? Just how coersive or mandatory this service is or will be in the future remains to be seen. This program is tailor made for political corruption, fraud, indoctrination, manipulation, and misuse. You need look no further than the government supported non-profit, non-partisan “community organizing” group ACORN to see where this is probably headed:

See also:
Criminals For Obama
Census Fun For Criminals
All The News That’s Fit To Hide
Rife With Bogus Idealism, Waste, AmeriCorps Doesn’t Need To Exist

I’m sure AmeriCorps has done some good work. But seriously, can you name one thing AmeriCorps has done? I can’t. So now, suddenly we need to throw $5.7 billion at a virtually unkown program and triple it’s size?

Instead of being wasted on a Democrat pet project that will inevitably be used to solidify their power base, that $5.7 billion could have purchased 32 additional F-22 Raptors, increasing the Raptor fleet by 15%, OR fully restored the $1.4 billion slashed from ballistic missile defense AND bought two dozen more Raptors! And, of course, that doesn’t even take into account the tens of thousands of high paying private sector engineering, manufacturing, etc. jobs that the F-22 and BMD programs support.

Spending priorities.

/all I can say is that, for all this wasted money, they had better be able to teach these 250,000 “community organizers” to fly so they can achieve air supremacy over the Chinese and Russians and protect American soil against Iranian Missiles and North Korean warheads

Obama Plucks The Raptor

Today is a sad day for American military superiority. In addition to cutting several major programs including cutting $1.4 billion from missile defense, Secretary of Defense Gates announced that the Obama administration is also ending the F-22 Raptor program, the world’s most advanced air superiority fighter by an order of magnitude.

F-22 Raptor axed by Pentagon

The Pentagon’s $534 billion budget request for 2009 shoots down future production of the F-22 Raptor, the stealth fighter made by Lockheed Martin Corp.’s Marietta, Ga.-based Aeronautics division.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Monday revealed the Pentagon’s plans to complete its order for 183 Raptors plus four more. But the U.S. Department of Defense will order no more after that. The Air Force had planned to order 20 Raptors in 2010 and 40 more in coming years.

See also:
Big cuts seen for F-22, other big weapon programs
F-22 Raptor to end production in favor of the F-35 JSF
Chambliss, Isakson disappointed in Raptors decision
F-22 Raptor, Seattle jobs, appear doomed
Machinists Denounce F-22 Funding Cut
US weapons cuts could put N.E. jobs in jeopardy
F-22A Raptor Home-The Site of the 21st Century Fighter
F-22 Raptor
F-22 Raptor
F-22A Raptor Advanced Tactical Fighter Aircraft US Air Force , USA
F-22 Raptor
F-22 Raptor
Disarming America

But hey, killing the F-22 frees up all that much more money for more important national defense priorities like community organizing and social welfare programs.

/R.I.P. Raptor, let’s all pray we never have to fight the Chinese or Russians during our lifetimes, because ACORN don’t fly