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Islamic State fight could breathe new life into the A-10

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Months after staving off a trip to the boneyard, the embattled A-10 Thunderbolt II is headed to the Middle East where it could be used to fight Islamic militants in Iraq and Syria. An Indiana Air National Guard unit that flies the Cold War-era gunships, known as Warthogs, is planning to deploy about 300 airmen and an unknown number of its aircraft to the U.S. Central Command region early next month, says a Sept. 17 news release from the unit. (www.stripes.com) עוד...

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bluethndr02
bluethndr02 8
Its just a bad ass aircraft all around. Breath In - Breath Out!
WALLACE24
WALLACE24 8
"Breathe new life into the A10". That's funny since we know who is not gonna be breathing when the A10's come to town.
preacher1
preacher1 0
preacher1
preacher1 0
Just FYI, they are figuring when I come home from the hospital in a couple of weeks that I will come home on insulin. My ATP goes out on age at end of November anyway and if I come home on insulin, that will punch my ticket then. Other than currency, I haven't done anything since last year anyway. I was probably going to just drop it down to a commercial and keep that as long as I could pass the physical, but I don't think you can fly at all having to use the needle, kinda like guys with a CDL. OH Well, lot's of good memories.LOL
AABABY
AABABY 2
Diet and excercise can work wonders. See you doctor for some ideas.
Best wishes to you.
canuck44
canuck44 1
Must be contagious but there are still ways to keep a ticket. Here is a good article on this: http://www.pilotfriend.com/aeromed/medical/diabetes.htm

Incidentally, the Dr Stanley who wrote a lot of the Aviation Medicine stuff died two weeks ago at around age 87. He was a true pioneer in bringing standards from the discipline to working pilots.
preacher1
preacher1 0
Yeah, I've been on waivers for diabetes and Afib for more years than I can remember. I don't know if I'd even want to go for a third class or not and at a quick reading on that article, special issuance 3rd class would be all I'd be eligible for and that doesn't even sound appealing. I'll worry about all that later. LOL
paultrubits
paul trubits -1
The standards are more than fair. They will keep only a few Type I diabetics from flying. Since Type I is usually diagnosed in teenage years, my guess is than learning to fly would not be a good option in life.
carlsonj
James Carlson 1
As a parent of a diabetic and a pilot, I'd definitely disagree with that. Learning to fly is a good thing! Besides the LSA route, the 3rd class medical is available for IDDM (Type 1 Diabetes). It's true that insulin use currently rules out most commercial flight, but flying for pay isn't the only reason to do it.

https://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/headquarters_offices/avs/offices/aam/ame/guide/dec_cons/disease_prot/diabetes_insulin/

There are even a few for-pay things you can do with a third class medical and an appropriate pilot certificate, flight instruction and pilot examination being two.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Very true but on pills you can fly forever, but once that needle starts, it doesn't matter what, bye bye rating. Standards are very fair but it's just that needle; they don't want anything to happen to somebody mid stream as most cases, insulin generally denotes the possibility of a coma. Sad part is, if they came up with it in pill form, they would probably waiver it. Personally, in all but the worst cases, needle is no worse than pills, as far as doses go.
paultrubits
paul trubits 1
Very short-sighted thinking. It is a drug delivery system, nothing more. People here needle and they think drug addict. Time we grew up.
jimg45
Jim Gardner 1
Not so short sighted Paul. The mental response for a patient going into DKA (Diabetic Keto-Acidosis) is much like hypoxia in that the person does not realize they are not as lucid as they should be. The pump is a great thing until it becomes disconnected. Had a very good friend die when hers was disconnected as she got into her car. A short 15 minute drive saw her go into DKA, go unconscious, her vehicle go into the lake and she drowned. It is the very real possibility of a person miscalculating a dosage or a myriad of other problems that can put both the pilot, passengers, and people on the ground at risk.
preacher1
preacher1 0
I couldn't agree more but those are the rules. Absence of pills can bring on a coma too. Old insulin shots were needed sometimes in a hurry if someone was out of whack bad and they penalized everybody for it, and especially today, when a lot of it can be done with one shot daily and done.
WALLACE24
WALLACE24 0
You have plenty to fill your time even without flying. Heck, I thought when I bought my plane I would be flying all the time but I had to go take an IPC couple weeks ago for currency. Lol.
preacher1
preacher1 0
Already getting there.LOL
paultrubits
paul trubits -1
You might be able to get one using an insulin pump(if your blood sugar is that unstable) (this is a pharmacist talking)
preacher1
preacher1 0
Blood Sugar not that unstable and doubt a pump will be recommended in lieu of a once a day shot. Either way, I don't know if all that would be worth the effort for a 3rd class anyway. Personally I have seen all around home from the air, and with the family having no interest in flying, it probably ain't gonna happen. If it ain't FL350+ in big iron, I ain't happy anyway. LOL
jimg45
Jim Gardner 2
preacher1 Have you tried Januvia? Just throwing it out there, not playing doctor by any stretch. I was on Metformin and thought it was gonna kill me and didn't work that well. Januvia works for me but everyone is different. 1 100mg tablet a day and I check level once a day. My A1C was 16 the day I was diagnosed and bs was 640 (I had been sick for a while and had lost 85 pounds. A1C stays around 6.5 and AM BS is 120-150. If you try it it takes a couple of week to stabilize and make sure it is in your insurance formulary as it is around $310.00 for a month supply.
paultrubits
paul trubits 1
Too bad. I would love to be one of your "self loading" cargo.
7765goldman
Pete Goldman 4
Perfect use, like no other.
jagerardi
jagerardi 4
Typical bonehead thinking: "We're not saying it's not needed, we're just saying we want to spend money on new, unneccessary toys more..."

..Joe
makunic
Melvin Kunicki 4
They keep trying but it ain't dying. A10 is the perfect ground support asset. The "if it works, don't fix it" adage really applies to this plane.
AABABY
AABABY 1
Does B-52 ring a bell?
AZAFVET
Wayne Fox 1
That was my thought also. I have been waiting for them to deploy the A10 for weeks. When I see lines of ISIS vehicles (former US/Iraq ) tanks etc. I could just imagine a few A10's swooping down, gun blazing and dropping some bombs for good measure and all that is left is smoke and sand. A lot of ISIS fighters would be soiling their pants when the hear the sound of the Wart Hog overhead.
planeaholic
planeaholic 1
Even more, what's better for close air support than a slow, quiet plane that's built like a tank and simply looks like hell on wheels when you're staring down the barrel at 30mm of fury?
None of the newer a/c are nearly as hardy as the A-10, and the worldwide trend seems to be more of this guerilla-style warfare that will require more close air precision and anti-personnel strikes, as opposed to high altitude "fixed target" strikes against government infrastructure.
jdriskell
James Driskell 1
The Russians saw the need for a specialized ground support aircraft in WW2 so they produced the heavily armored IL-2 Stormovik which served in that role as well as a flying tank buster. The USAAF used the P-47 in much the same role. Both aircraft could get down in the mud and do the job while absorbing lots of punishment. There's a reason the the A-10 is called the Thunderbolt II because it does the same job. Too bad the AF can't see the need!
FritzSteiner
Fritz Steiner 3
Not that what I think will influence the allocation of ground support aircraft, but I've long believed that the assets that do that job should belong to the service that uses it. It works out very well for the Marines.

In this instance I believe that the Army should have its own organic fixed wing ground support. That includes every aspect associated with training, maintaining, controlling, and flying them.

The A-10 is the Air Force's red headed stepchild. The people associated with it are at the bottom of the Air Force's pecking order. They don't fit the glamorous high tech, high speed, high altitude image of the fighter pilot. Yet the Air Force jealously and stridently resists any suggestion that A-10 's be turned over to the Army. It would prefer to scrap them than turning them over.

These opinions are those of a retired Naval officer who has no skin in this inter-service squabbling game.
jdriskell
James Driskell 2
The AF had a fit when the Army started using some fixed wing aircraft for support early on. I think they felt challenged (as well they should have). The USAAF couldn't even provide adequate close air support to the Army during the Philippine campaign during WWII. However the Marine Corps could and did.
FritzSteiner
Fritz Steiner 2
During the Vietnam War the Army and Air Force FACS both flew O-1 Birddogs.

The Army version carried four HE rockets to mark targets (with special emphasis ;-) ). The Air Force version carried four smoke rockets.

I'm sure the Air Force pouted about the Army's doing this, but on the ground, Vietnam was mainly an Army show.
preacher1
preacher1 3
Although they had up to 8 grand on the main, they routinely operated off of about 5 grand when they were at KFSM. The ISIS thing is a perfect use for them, at least for the out in the open things and they don't really require anybody on the ground spotting and lasering targets. It will be interesting.
canuck44
canuck44 3
Wayne,won't it be a bitch when the Hog proves the politicians and the Army that kept her alive were right and the Air Force types that insisted on their shiny expensive F-35 toys instead were wrong. Unlike other instances of political interference this was not done to keep production lines open in their communities, but in response to perceived needs.

The Air Force says they are getting too expensive to maintain. 3D printing may soon make that argument passé.
preacher1
preacher1 3
I just wish it had been done before they tore up the 188th at KFSM and replaced them with drones. Of course, not my worry anymore but the Ft Smith area has just took a good licking over the past few years, economic wise, and didn't need that added to it.
sgbelverta
sharon bias 2
I love Warthogs. They used to come into McClellan AFB all the time for repair. Their engines sounds are so unique. They're so sturdy. They'll get the job done.
patpylot
patrick baker 2
none of this gradual ramping of of air power. Let's see several hundred apache, cobra,A-10 warthogs along with Spectre c-130 gunships go to war as fast as they can be brought into the theater, and tell them to bet busy, very busy. ISIS has no counter to these proven weapon systems, which are capable of loitering, hovering, massing and attacking, and erasing the pick-up truck 8th century warriors. There were designated kill zones in the first Iraq war- time to draw up some new ones and squish the bad guys. We got the numbers- we are overdue getting them back to work. We are going to have to do something like this eventually, so cut the silliness and get to it.
kgorey
Kevin Gorey 2
Last I heard we were planning on mothballing the A-10. Still true? Ridiculous if so. Once again the lowly Warthog proves its worth. Not flashy but effective. Some of the $66B F-22 fleet made a beauty appearance to demonstrate air superiority over ISIS and we haven't heard much from them since.
LordLayton
Leighton Elliott 2
Congress wouldn't approve the new budget without the A-10 in it. (SMART MOVE!) There are no F-35s on duty yet and even if there were, they are not suited to this mission. I'm wondering what took so long for them to be there, considering they are the next best thing to that staggeringly stupid "no boots on the ground" ideology, I can't wait to see the mini-gun make a pink mist out of those ISIS bastards! If they were used along the Turkish border also, it would surgically cut off all the ISIS ties to Turkey and would embolden Turkey to join the fight without them feeling threatened. The A-10 should be in Afghanistan too. Why not?
4U85771
FRANCISCO MIRABENT 2
There we go using one of the bestTechnology out of NY and safe heaven for our pilots.
GO GET THEM GENTLEMEN! THANKS FOR YOUR SERVICE..
mpradel
Marcus Pradel 1
Heck, just deploy a few F-35 into the ground combat role and see what happens.. that's what the Brass wanted to prove anyway!
CaptainFreedom
CaptainFreedom 4
The F-35s are designed to fight an enemy that themselves have fairly sophisticated armaments. I'm not sure you need them against guys riding around on pickup trucks with machine guns mounted in the truck bed.
ebgarcia
ebgarcia 5
I think you just made Marcus's point. F-35 can't replace the A-10 for this kind of situation.
LITTLEDOLORES
ALLAN WISE 1
Saw an A10 fly over my Ranch in Mesa County, Colorado a few days ago at 3-4ooo feet agl probably headed to KGJT. Brought back great memories of Tucson decades ago.

Use to see them by the dozens there---always a thrill!
tufiremn
Jonathan Brandt 1
On the subject of diabetics, there are now interstitial blood glucose monitoring devices out there that continually monitor blood sugar levels, and will alert you when the levels are out of range. Some systems can even communicate with and insulin pump to deliver insulin as needed.
carlsonj
James Carlson 1
Yep. CGM systems are getting better with time. Right now, at least with the ones we've tried, they're mostly useful for trend monitoring -- knowing early when things might go out of line, and thus serving as a "check now" alert -- and not quite accurate enough for actual treatment. But it won't be long until they're improved to the point of being quite valuable.
jimmymac5000
Jamie Matthews 1
The NY Air National Guard used to fly them out of Syracuse, New York. Amazing to see in the air. I know it must have been an optical illusion but I used to watch them slow down while practicing to a point where I thought they were standing still in mid-air. Would not want that 30mm flying cannon chasing me around a desert.
vulcancruiser
Larry Loffelmacher 1
any pilot thats watched a demo knows this plane kicks butt.......it will be around a long time from here...........
AABABY
AABABY 1
The ancestor of the A-10 was the OV-1 Mohawk. Tht little airplane was amazing! I watched it approch a demonstration area and even then I couldn't hear it until it was only a couple of hundred yards away. If the A-10 is that stealthy, It's a game changer.
lionguy
Jack Renton 1
The A-10 is a really bad ass aircraft. The perfect platform to take out the trucks and provide air support. Too bad they aren't already there!!
JOHNDELLINGER
JOHN DELLINGER 1
Good news for the troops on and not on the ground. :-)
patpylot
patrick baker 1
what is needed at once, now, today, without delay, is to ship apache, cobra, every airworthy warthog a-10 , spectre gunships, and enough control aircraft to control and organize their most effective use. We will have to do this eventually, so, let us get to it. ISIS lacks effective counters to these proven weapons in sufficient numbers to slow us down. Let them begin at once attacking these 8th century truck-mounted barbarians, These aircraft can loiter, hover, mass and attack,and we can recreate kill boxes as we had in Iraq. If it moves and it isn't ours, we shoot and destroy. Otherwise, why do we have them in inventory?
blueashflyer
blueashflyer 1
I say roll in with snake and nape. set up some kill boxes and repeatedly go to work on them.
distar97
Dennis Harper 1
Long ago I got my PPL as a teen. I wanted a flying career. I paid the extra fee for a first class medical just to be sure it wouldn't be a problem later on. Then out of nowhere, at age 21, I found myself on insulin and my plans for a flying career came to a sudden end. In fact all flying for me came to a full stop with no exceptions possible.

I agree with the comments here. These days you can fly with limitations if you are tightly controlled and can prove it. Forget commercial flying though. Like you said the memories are good. I'm real happy at least I attained my PPL before it was too late. I sure wish I could fly one of the new Piper Super Cubs. I never got to learn tail wheels.

There's a legitimate problem with insulin. Despite your best efforts, you can blackout with little warning. The worse part is often you can't see it coming and take corrective action. I wonder if I can fly as 2nd pilot if I test every 15 minutes. Glucose being a bit high, let's say up to 200 is not a problem as is being low.

One time I was at a social function talking with two doctors that specialize in diabetes. I excused myself to do a routine glucose test. I was surprised to learn I was at 31 which to me means I'm just a 5 points from blacking out. Again, I had no idea, even the docs saw nothing wrong with me. For you Preacher, your new to all this. You'll get warnings such as sweating and not feeling right long before a blackout.

After a long period of time, maybe 20 years, you'll no longer get the warnings. Your meter is your friend. Carry it with you everywhere along with some fun-size Milky Ways. They dissolve well. And carry a couple of tubes of Glucose gel for when your really low. I also carry Sunny-D juice. It needs no refrigeration and is almost as sweet as OJ. Sorry for the treatise but our friend Preacher and others similarly situated need to know this.
preacher1
preacher1 3
Well, I have been dealing with mine for about the past 10 years and pills have kept it under control for that time. I have managed to past a first class with diabetic and cardiovascular waivers. It has just progressed up on a regular basis. I think they are going to start me on the lantis as a maintenance dose once daily and we will go from there. I'm am basically retired now with my rating going away in November due to age anyway but as it stands, I figure I have made my last flight.
jimg45
Jim Gardner 1
So far Dennis I have not had a problem with it being low on Januvia even though a few weeks in it made it to 91 which was not a problem. There again, I have the benefit of 20 + years in health care and my wife was a nurse for 32 years. It is scary enough in the beginning even having the knowledge. Not knowing anything at all about it would be like a near stall on short final. I worked with a guy that had been on insulin since he was a kid. When he wouldn't answer his pages we knew to do a quick search for him. Invariably, he was down for the count!He kept the gel in his shirt pocket.
jdriskell
James Driskell 1
I thought the idiots at HQ USAF who wanted to retire the Warthog in the late 1980's would have learned a lesson about its need in the 1st Gulf War and subsequent shindigs and maybe would have written down the lessons learned. But apparently not!!! Nothing beats a flying 30mm canon with tons of loiter time, but it's not glamorous so maybe it doesn't fit into the USAF Brass's image of a fighter jock. Their problem is that they don't really understand close air support and the tools needed to give the grunt in the mud everything he needs to accomplish his mission. Maybe they should ask a Marine!
preacher1
preacher1 4
They really need to give it to the Army or Marines. I'd make it Army though cause the Marines are gonna get the F35
yonian
yonian 4
A rational defense policy would see the A-6 still in production for the Navy and A-10 production for an integrated Army close air support component. The USAF has never wanted to get into the mud with the troops. Congress and the DOD care more about funneling money into their cronies' bank accounts than they do about real project outcomes.
jdriskell
James Driskell 2
egad
James Hodges 0
Hope the shoulder fired SAMs don't get our best Tank Buster. Biggest problem is that our first known Bastard, Illegal Alien President doesn't really want to hurt his Buds. Dr. Jim. Korea and Nam Vet.
jdriskell
James Driskell 4
Keep your ultra right wind political nonsense out of this forum!
FritzSteiner
Fritz Steiner 2
James Driskell: You'd have made a point if you hadn't vociferously introduced your own politics into the forum.
jdriskell
James Driskell 0
jdriskell
James Driskell 2
Wing (but wind was probably also correct)!

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