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"The Taliban hates the A-10. That’s good enough for me." -- Senator Lindsey Graham

In February of 2012, a report surfaced that said the U.S. military was looking to retire single-purpose aircraft in favor of multirole aircraft in large part due to budget cuts. One of the aircraft that was among those to be killed off was the A-10 Warthog. However, it looks as though some lawmakers want the venerable Warthog to fly for many more years.
The A-10 is a dedicated ground attack jet that has been providing close air support for decades. Senator Kelly Ayotte (R) has announced that she will push for amendments to be made to legislation that would retire the A-10 fleet.
The USAF has proposed the removal of the A-10 from its fleet by 2019 in part due to a 2011 deficit-reduction law. There are lawmakers on both sides of the isle that want to keep the A-10 flying, but they will have to find cuts in the budget elsewhere to make that happen.

The USAF maintains that by cutting the A-10 from the fleet it will save $3.5 billion over several years.
Senator Lindsey Graham (R) says that he has "been in theater enough to know what the troops say about the A-10." Graham added, "The Taliban hates the A-10. That’s good enough for me."
According to reports, many senior Army leaders, special operations troops, and soldiers in the field oppose the retirement of the fleet. Army Chief of Staff General Raymond Oiderno recently stated, "Obviously, we prefer the A-10. [Soldiers] can see it, they can hear it, they have confidence in it."

Source: Defense News

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By corduroygt on 4/14/2014 12:03:58 PM , Rating: 0
What good is being able to "visually acquire" if the guns and missiles are still radar guided?
In either case, I'm sure sending 3 UAV's is cheaper than a single A-10 and doesn't put a pilot at risk for the type of mission you've described.

By Bad-Karma on 4/14/2014 1:08:05 PM , Rating: 4
If they can visually acquire you then they can visually guide their weapon against you. Most AAA and TAC SAMS, as well as some of the newer MANPADs, have that capability.

In fact the ability to use optical guidance has never really gone away, it has just been eclipsed over the years by automated systems.

By Bad-Karma on 4/14/2014 1:12:27 PM , Rating: 2
If I remember my training (From way back in the days) many STRAT SAMs like the Sa-2/3 have optical guidance. It prove quite effective in Vietnam when their radars were taken out.

In fact the Vietnamese would optically launch a missile and guide it most of the way to the target and switch on the radars for the final intercept. That way the AC's crew had very little warning time in which to respond. Proved very effective against the slow lumbering B-52s. This gave rise to rapid developments in the weasel programs.

By Jeffk464 on 4/14/2014 1:15:22 PM , Rating: 2
Just remember one of the key reasons that russia lost in Afghanistan is they were unwilling to put their SU 25's at risk when they needed to. Why did we loose again. :) eh oh yeah the enemy refuses to acknowledge that they lost.

By AntDX316 on 4/14/2014 11:53:20 PM , Rating: 2
cause the UAVs... do the same amount of dmg with less upkeep

By JediJeb on 4/23/2014 6:03:10 PM , Rating: 2
I have yet to see a UAV that carries that massive Gatling gun that the A-10 carrier. The amount of damage it does I just don't see UAVs doing.

By Hammer1024 on 4/14/2014 2:32:53 PM , Rating: 4
Folks... Let's get a bit... ok A LOT, more educated on what UAVs can and cannot do!

UAVs are missile magnets: THEY DO NOT DODGE!

They fly programmed way point flight paths: THEY DO NOT DODGE!

They do not take on targets of opportunity!

The only UAVs that DO NOT use way point flight are hand held squad and platoon units.

Of these, the only lethal one is a switchblade with a combat radius of a few miles and in direct line of sight of the operator.

The Predator uses a loiter scheme to hit it's targets.

UAVs are NOT piloted by some guy with a joystick sitting in a room thousands of miles away; the communications delay is a killer (22,000 up from the ground station to a satellite, 22,000 miles to another satellite, then 22,000miles down to the UAV, return path the same). By the time the information is encrypted, sent out and the UAV responded, it's 10's of seconds LATER!

GET OVER THIS UAV obsession please. You have no idea what you're talking about.

By corduroygt on 4/14/2014 3:30:16 PM , Rating: 2
You are grossly misinformed about all of that.

By Reclaimer77 on 4/14/2014 5:44:16 PM , Rating: 2
Fact is anyone saying a UAV can do the job of the A-10 is a certifiable retard.

Get over this UAV obsession please. They are NOT combat aircraft. Yeah they're pretty good at lobbing a missile into some guys undefended cave or shack, but that's about it.

By Strunf on 4/15/2014 7:50:46 AM , Rating: 2
That's an ad... the communications lag is a real barrier for real-time movements, however one could easily see the operator sending instructions, target this, go there etc then the UAV would follow the instructions by itself.

If you play computer games you would know lag is a huge handicap and most people play using wired connections that are much faster and with a lower ping than anything a satellite can provide.

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