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F-35 deployment to Ukraine?

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Vanir Ausf B,

I didn't say they needed to do this now. Rather, I was talking about such a deployment in the context of a crisis. Then, it could not only be a military move, but if publicly stated or deliberately leaked, would constitute a unmistakable demonstration of US resolve and support for Ukraine, not to mention a real attention-getter of a diplomatic message to Putin.

Regards,

John Kettler 

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12 minutes ago, John Kettler said:

it could not only be a military move, but if publicly stated or deliberately leaked, would constitute a unmistakable demonstration of US resolve and support for Ukraine, not to mention a real attention-getter of a diplomatic message to Putin.

In the statement I quoted you were talking about penetration of AD bubbles and knocking out SAM sites. That goes well beyond showing resolve and is not something the F-35 is ready for right now.

Edited by Vanir Ausf B

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Vanir Ausf B,

We seem to be having a major communication breakdown. In the first part of that post I referred to how the deployment of the F-35 to Ukraine, in light of Russian acute concerns over the Pershing 2 and GLCM during the Cold War, expressed as a flat out demand for banning both, especially the Pershing 2, under INF, would be viewed by the Kremlin. Were we to actually send F-35s in, I expect they would go after the long range SAMs and the Iskanders. Without long range SAMs, the AD bubble pretty much collapses, allowing US and other NATO aircraft to operate without the constraints imposed by those SAMs, and destroying the treble threat (conventional, chemical and nuclear) Iskanders would put a crimp in Russian military capabilities and options. As noted, there are real escalation risks. Putin isn't stupid, and Russia is highly responsive to demonstrations of strength. As long as the Bear has existed, so has it been. The Bear is opportunistic and cunning, but it has no death wish. Without the AD bubble to hamstring enemy air operations on the one hand and Iskanders to hold not just Ukraine but Poland and part of Germany at risk, then Putin's ability to shape matters to suit him are drastically curtailed. He knows full well what kind of havoc enemy airpower can inflict on his ground forces and will therefore act accordingly. Russian strategic doctrine does provided for limited use of nukes to restore the status quo, which is a favorable correlation of forces for Russia, and this has to be factored in. Putin understands full well that should an ICBM or SLBM be launched, all bets are off, and the Russians got religion on nuclear winter (thought to be Western propaganda but confirmed by Russia's own scientists) so thoroughly back in the mid-1980s that during a strategic exercise involving simulated nuclear release, Brezhnev had to be repeatedly assured the nuclear release device wasn't going to actually launch the missiles. 

Regards,

John kettler

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3 minutes ago, John Kettler said:

Were we to actually send F-35s in, I expect they would go after the long range SAMs and the Iskanders.

In 2020 maybe, not 2017.

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On March 4, 2017 at 9:31 AM, HerrTom said:

As far as I know, pretty much every project on F-35 is way over budget and behind schedule.  This may be a trend for big military contracts for shiny new toys, but doesn't that say that there's something wrong with the contract and procurement process?

Let me share a secret about defense procurement. The contractor submits a bid that he hopes will win the contract. Now, he knows he can't build X at that price and stay in the black, but it's enough to get development underway. Once the project is up and going and the taxpayer has already committed billions to it, and there isn't anything else around that can do the job at a competitive cost, the bad news starts arriving. "Ooops, those plasma shields are a little trickier than we had any reason to expect. Another hundred billion please." And so it goes. The guys with chickens and stars on their shoulders know that this goes on, but they want these toys so bad and they know that this is the only way they are going to get them, so they play along. As the taxpayer who is the ultimate beneficiary (or not) of this game, you must decide for yourself if you approve of it continuing.

Michael

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...well, it's a summary. There are some assumptions and conclusions in there that are erroneous. Obviously, the F35 being declared operational is NOT the same as "fully" operational. Kind of like giving all the infantry in a battalion their bayonets and declaring the battalion ready for battle...and planning on getting the rifles, support weapons, etc., later.

The F35 should be considered to still be in the developmental phase, while concurrently being able to field limited combat capacity.

No time at the moment to go through it point by point.

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The issue here is concurrency. The F-35 is no more in development at the moment than any previous jet to have been declared IOC. The difference is the perception due to the concurrency method of procurement and the fact that this airplane is the first one subject to this kind of internet scrutiny. All you have to do is go back and look at the development of the F-15, 16, etc AFTER they were declared IOC to see that this is the case. The number of issues that got work through were rather large, but no one talks about them due to the fact that google didn't exist in 1980. And if you want a real eye opener, read about the development troubles of the Mig-29 or Su-27. 

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BTW, possible first combat use of F-35.

"During the same attack, the Israeli Air Force (IAF) also reportedly destroyed an S-300 SAM battery deployed near the Syrian presidential palace, on Mount Qassioun. According to the same unnamed French intelligence source quoted by Malbrunot, the F-35 aircraft finally overflew the palace of Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad, before returning to Israel" 

http://www.airforcesmonthly.com/2017/03/07/have-israels-new-f-35s-seen-combat/

I don't know if it's true but I like how it sounds :)

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The reporter who wrote that piece is a rather interesting character.  ;)

No idea if it's true or not, but frankly I'm not sure the US (or Lockheed Martin) would want Israel to put it's priceless new toy in serious harms way this early in its (not entirely complete) development.....Consequently I'm rather sceptical about this one.  :mellow:

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Agree with SS.  Remember when the Bosnians or Serbs shot down a super secret (at the time) F117 stealth aircraft during their
troubles".  Parts found their way to the Chinese embassy, and we had to accidentally bomb it to dust "due to inaccurate maps provided by the CIA" etc.

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28 minutes ago, Erwin said:

Agree with SS.  Remember when the Bosnians or Serbs shot down a super secret (at the time) F117 stealth aircraft during their
troubles".  Parts found their way to the Chinese embassy, and we had to accidentally bomb it to dust "due to inaccurate maps provided by the CIA" etc.

That's news to me. Do yo have some sources for that? All I can find is a story in an UK tabloid that reference a book written by a Chinese official. Seems thin to totally bogus. But I could have missed some credible articles or books I guess...

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800px-Serbian_poster_%22Sorry_we_didn%27

 

The core facts are correct: 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1999_F-117A_shootdown

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_bombing_of_the_Chinese_embassy_in_Belgrade

Proving the link between the two might be problematical though.  ;)

The Serbs were very far from the first to see through stealth:

http://articles.latimes.com/1991-05-01/local/me-787_1_gulf-war

None of which bodes at all well for the F-35.....The ability to network & process radar returns has in all likelihood advanced at a massively faster rate than stealth technology, just think about the computer you had on your desktop in the nineties, then look at what you are using now.  :mellow:

Edited by Sgt.Squarehead

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3 hours ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

Proving the link between the two might be problematical though.  ;)

 LOL it's the link that seems a bit off.

 

3 hours ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

The Serbs were very far from the first to see through stealth:

Indeed. Lower Radar signature never meant none. Even if some poor citizens were fooled by not paying attention.

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Where to begin? Had no idea Israel was getting, still less had the F-35. Wow! Am unaware of any causal relationship between the shootdown (not three as in the graphic, one), Chinese recovery of debris (news to me, but not exactly surprising) and the bombing of their embassy by the US. The Aviationist is a highly credible and widely cited site. The article mentions parts of the downed bird being sent to Russia for study aka technical exploitation. There is no mention of China. But the comments say otherwise, and there is a great deal of new information from both our end and the Serbian side. Some of the people were deeply involved in aircraft operations, one was a Serb combat pilot, etc. Taking the article's revelations and some real shockers from comments, it appears the OPSEC and COMSEC regarding F-117 ops were nothing short of terrible, with a catalog of not mere failures, but gross ones. Worse, there appears to have been a Serbian spy in play, too.

https://theaviationist.com/2014/03/27/vega-31-shot-down/

Defence Aviation has a different take. Again, the comments are useful, I think, but I can't read some, for they're in Serbian and I just don't have the energy to go do the Google Translate function presently.

http://www.defenceaviation.com/2007/02/how-was-f-117-shot-down-part-1.html

CounterPunch has an in-depth story of the bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade. I'd characterize it, from my perspective at least, of being awash in revelations from a slew of what would appear to be credible sources in the US, NATO and maybe even China from a survivor of the strike. That man wrote a book about it. The two principal scenarios are: The Chinese embassy had special radios and was broadcasting Yugoslav military communications from sanctuary, as it were, OR the Chinese got Stealth Fighter parts by purchase or providing help, and the CIA bypassed NATO altogether and ran a US strike directly targeting the Chinese Embassy specifically to destroy the recovered Stealth material--which is specified. Believe it would be reasonable to consider a third scenario, BOTH. Not entirely sure on the legal niceties, but I'm pretty sure conducting direct military communications on behalf of another power would at least potentially put that embassy into a category not found in most, and if Stealth Fighter parts are in the basement, then that might be the impetus to finally get the ball rolling. Unfortunately, there are strong indications it didn't work and that China got around a 20-year Stealth technology jump!

http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/05/25/the-bombing-of-the-chinese-embassy-in-belgrade-in-1999-reconsidered/

Taken in aggregate, what I've read made my head swim.

Regards,

John Kettler

Edited by John Kettler

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The F117 shootdown in Serbia was possible through a compounded series of USAF errors which primarily occurred through arrogance, ignorance, and complacency. The Serbs deserve credit, as well, for their exploitation of the above.

Without getting into Stealth characteristics, the main endeavor of the shaping is to DIRECT the returns of energy FROM specific directions TOWARDS a different direction. Absorption and mitigation of the radar energy is important, as well.

The USAF followed the SAME ingress and egress paths and altitudes for several weeks. How friggin' stupid can you be??? Admittedly, this was somewhat restricted due to the beautiful ROE. When is a war not a war? This allowed the Serbs an opportunity to reposition some radars for maximum effectiveness. Then, their work was rewarded: they had an opportunity and they capitalized on it.

This was VERY similar to the B-52 routings used during the bombings of North Vietnam. Same time, same altitude, same route. At least there's consistency in using bad tactics.

That, at least, is the thumbnail sketch of it.

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c3k,

You make some very good points, many of which are familiar to me from having worked on several Stealth projects and being familiar with others. Speaking of Stealth, did you know TACIT BLUE, the Flying Technology Testbed for the curved RAM later incorporated into the B-2, is in the Air Force Museum at Wright-Patterson AFB? I clean forgot to list the point you made about running on the same course and altitude night after night, and my mind went immediately to ROLLING THUNDER II, where it cost us, I believe, 3 x B-52 before a near mutiny forced changes.

Regards,

John Kettler

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On 3/9/2017 at 1:34 PM, c3k said:

Without getting into Stealth characteristics, the main endeavor of the shaping is to DIRECT the returns of energy FROM specific directions TOWARDS a different direction. Absorption and mitigation of the radar energy is important, as well.

We know how backscatter works :D Especially what to do with bistatic with well-known routes and sharp-angled stealth forms :)

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Yeah it's difficult to make it stealthy in all wavelengths :) Bomb bay opening time is just to launch and hit. They knew where it was approximately before.

PS Since they used radio-command guided Neva they might have even launched several missiles in advance with intervals between launches :)

Edited by IMHO

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7 hours ago, IMHO said:

Yeah it's difficult to make it stealthy in all wavelengths :) Bomb bay opening time is just to launch and hit. They knew where it was approximately before.

PS Since they used radio-command guided Neva they might have even launched several missiles in advance with intervals between launches :)

It is also considerably less necessary to be as stealthy in other wavelengths, due to the inherent problems that make said wavelengths less useful for practical use in the first place. It is also for this reason that any additional stealth in lower frequencies exacerbates the difficulties of using said frequencies 

Edited by shift8

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c3k,

Oh for the memory I once had (but am gradually getting back)!  I made a gross error and should have written "LINEBACKER II" where I wrote: "ROLLING THUNDER II."

Guys,

As for Stealth, the core idea is to be able to so compress the other side's detection envelope that it creates large exploitable holes in previously complete surveillance radar coverage, thus permitting evasive routing, hugely complicating air defense based on GCI and, if attacking into a defended area, dramatically reduces where first detection occurs, thus reducing the reaction time for the defense, consequently, it's effectiveness. Even crude Stealth can work wonders. When a full-scale model of the Ho-229 model was built and analyzed using the same RATSCAT (Radar Test And Scattering) facilities evaluations used on the Stealth Bomber, it was found the Ho-229 could fly almost with impunity through the CHAIN HOME radar network, for the detection range was reduced to almost nothing, relatively speaking. My recollection is that it was pretty much a point defense, in fact, leaving the UK practically naked in terms of radar coverage.

Regards,

John Kettler

 

 

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5 hours ago, shift8 said:

It is also considerably less necessary to be as stealthy in other wavelengths, due to the inherent problems that make said wavelengths less useful for practical use in the first place. It is also for this reason that any additional stealth in lower frequencies exacerbates the difficulties of using said frequencies 

MIMO+DSP+Many intelligent things? Good enough? :)

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IMHO, 

The stuff of which time, please? We have at least three generations of Stealth aircraft being discussed here. If I don't know which one, then I can't respond appropriately. "MIMO" was an acronym I never encountered before, but I see what you mean now, and I understand what DSP is, but what are you trying to say with the last part of that sentence. Whatever it is, you seem to be having fun with it. That's one emoji I instantly understand. As for multipath, the phenomenon was recognized and analyzed during and shortly after WW II. If you're talking about multipath as it applies to Stealth, then that's something else altogether.  It was a visiting Russian scientist, Petr Ufimstev, who figured out the theory which resulted in the radical (and many thought foredoomed as unflyable, hence the moniker "Hopeless Diamond") HAVE BLUE. The way I got the story from that guy with the conduit into the CIA, he put up the equations on a blackboard during a scientific meeting, then left the room. One of our people realized the significance of what he'd written, whereupon the blackboard was classified and quietly secured by armed guards forthwith. The reason HAVE BLUE and the F-117 were faceted is because we lacked the computational power then to figure out this stuff. Later, we did have the computer power to deal with the super complex calculations for the B-2, but looks good in the computer and in small models is one thing, but trying it out for real (without having to first build the B-2) is something else again, thus TACIT BLUE as a flyable concept demonstrator to show smoothly curved Stealth would work. I've seen TACIT BLUE from close enough to touch the wingtip, and it's the weirdest aircraft I've ever seen. It looks less like a plane than some weird amalgam of a a tram car or school bus molded into a minimally arced hull bottom--with chines. Wouldn't be at all surprised to learn its nickname had "platypus" in there somewhere. If they hadn't parked the thing under the left wingtip of a B-36, I might've gotten a look at the intakes, too. Frustrated me no end! On a Stealth bomber aside, one of our NASP guys had previously worked on the some aspect of the B-2 and reported being mystified on his arrival over a flat prohibition against  having any calendar, photo or model of Jack Northrop's YB-49 in his office. Much later, he found out why!

TACIT BLUE

Northrop_Tacit_Blue_Whale.jpg

Image Credit: USAF via Wikimadia Commons.

Regards,

John Kettler

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