I saw Striker post about this a few weeks ago on telegram, and I added it to my saved messages. I think it fits quite well with the posts I’ve been doing on fighter planes.
Okay so on the left side of the image we have some Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), commonly referred to as drones. And on the right we’ve got some actual real life motorcycle infantry.
You’ll notice that the UAV image clearly states that it’s an Artist’s Concept. It looks like some weird cross between a recon UAV and a glide bomb, and I have to say, it does not fill me with confidence when the twitter thread/article starts off in such ways.
Nevertheless I generally agree with the guys argument, and I’ll let him speak for himself.
Cheap combat drones have completely transformed the modern battlefield. But there is a countermeasure… MOTORCYCLE INFANTRY! THREAD on how some armies may soon look like Mad Max.
Drones no longer are exclusively weapons of the first world. As
has pointed out, today much like the Spanish Civil War did in the 30s, far away clashes in places like Azerbaijan and Ethiopia, offer observers a sobering vision of how next gen warfare will be fought.
I’m not going to be snarky, but I could go the rest of my life without hearing someone say “next gen warfare.” He does include this snippet from some CSIS article.
In the Azerbaijan-Armenia conflict, the Azeri used Turkish and Israeli drones to dominate the skies and win. In Ethiopia last month, Middle Eastern combat drones were also credited for stopping rebels from seizing the capital.
Azerbaijan used UAV’s to dominate the ground, not the air. Nobody even pretends that these things are any good at all for tactical air superiority. It’s possible he was referring to them being used to capture Armenian Airfields, or destroy roads, starving the Armenian aircraft of fuel. That he didn’t say this makes me believe I’m being very charitable.
The value of cheap drones isn’t just shooting Hellfire missiles at people. You can now flood the skies, have excellent surveillance of enemy activity, and can direct artillery, rockets,& airstrikes at enemy positions. Now the enemy’s rear takes as much fire as the front lines.
What makes this even scarier is that no one has a truly effective countermeasure against drones. Billions are being spent worldwide, but no one knows how to reliably take these things out.
He says that “now with drones we can,” and then lists a bunch of things that were done decades ago, and better, with manned airplanes.
Here’s the Vietnam-era OV-10 Bronco. Sadly you couldn’t do Forward Air Observation in them. Oh wait, no actually, you totally could. And they did, constantly.
Here’s an entire non-fiction book written by an American Pilot, Marshall Harrison, who did exactly that in Vietnam. OV-10’s, and their pilots, would be used in conjunction with artillery and infantry, not so much bombing, and would mark areas with smoke, coordinate fire with the artillery crews, and lay down their own 20mm or rocket suppressive fire when opportunity presented itself.
They succeeded older, less rugged aircraft such as the O-1 BirdDog, which is basically just a Cessna 170 with barely any modifications.
Here we see another airplane that had a very similar role, the O-2 Skymaster. And below we see yet another plane used in a similar role, the A-1 Skyraider.
The Skyraider is a bit more of a medium bomber, being originally designed for naval strikes of surface ships, but it was used in that same Armed Air Recon/Close Air Support/Forward Air Controller role in Vietnam. They were also used for search and rescue.
The US military used to have a ton of planes that can do exactly what this twatter dude thinks we have only just now got the capability to do using UAV’s. They’re all gone now, being replaced, poorly, by the A-10, a plane that the parasitical USAF bureaucracy hates with a passion and has been trying to get rid of since before it was even put into production.
I say poorly because, while the A-10 is a great destructive airplane, with the low speed performance necessary to actually find camouflaged targets that do not wish to be found, it still consumes far too much fuel to be used puttering about coordinating artillery fire. They also use too much fuel to do constant recon patrols, or serve as a constant presence over the heads of our troops, except in the hottest areas.
Finally, the extra weight in armament the USAF bureaucracy forced the A-10 to be able to carry, an absurd 18,000 lbs of munitions, ruined much of the planes maneuverability and STOL performance. Giant 1-2,000 lbs bombs simply cannot be dropped in close support of infantry without potentially killing our own infantry, since the area destroyed by the lethal shrapnel is well within the range of expected infantry combat, to say nothing of collateral damage. Even in the naval strike role, 18,000 lbs of munitions is still absurd. That would be enough to blow up an entire aircraft carrier battlegroup with one plane. And if you were actually doing an attack you’d carry much less weight in order to be faster and more maneuverable. You’d also launch far more than one plane, of course.
But the problem for the USAF bureaucracy is that it’s really hard to make money off of just the cannon shells fired by the 30mm GAU-8 cannon. Especially since a competitive buy program was instituted that forced the price from the supplier to be close to cost. So they turned the plane into a glorified bomb truck, because they can make huge profits off of these weapons, especially the “smart” ones, since the value of “smartness,” can be made arbitrary, thus allowing prices to be divorced from costs, and putting money in the pockets of the very same corporations these stunning and brave generals will be working for immediately after retirement.
It’s true that we aren’t forced to put 18,000 lbs of munitions on the plane every time we fly it. However, we still pay the structural reinforcement price of having the ability to carry all that weight on our wings and elsewhere. A 1,000 lbs bomb, at a 9G turn, is 9,000 lbs ripping itself off the wings. It is not a simple matter of adding a couple of twist ties or some duct tape to keep them on there. The A-10 is sluggish even when flying clean as a result. Being overweight also means it has a poorer climb rate and acceleration rate than it ought to.
The A-10 was forced to sacrifice actual performance so that the USAF And Friends could make some money off the plane. And yet, it’s still loved by the troops whose lives are actually at stake in the fighting. In fairness, a low flying, armoured plane with a fuck off cannon is going to be pretty effective regardless, but mostly it’s just because it’s the only real ground support aircraft left in the USAF inventory. No, the F-15C LARP Eagle does not count as CAS, being entirely unable to actually find things on the ground in the first place. Those planes are little more than the worlds shittiest and most expensive artillery.
So why is it that the parasitical USAF bureaucracy got rid of these planes? Simple, their necessarily rugged design makes it nearly impossible to make obscene profits off of them. You see, if you have a plane like the OV-10 Bronco, it’s pretty damn hard to justify a pricetag that’s an order of magnitude higher than the costs to build it. These planes need to be fairly small, so as to consume little fuel which is important strategically, but also just in terms of the practical aspect of operating them out of some mudstrip airbase. It’s hard to land a big plane in a big pile of mud and takeoff again. And it’s hard to get huge amounts of fuel to any random patch of grassland.
The slower ones, such as the O-1 BirdDog above, and frankly even the OV-10 Bronco, don’t go fast enough to justify retractable landing gear. The OV-10 Bronco actually does have retractable landing gear, but that’s basically North American Rockwell playing make belief. Retractable landing gear only starts to make sense around 300+ kmph, and even then only if the plane is designed to cruise everywhere. For these planes, which are slowly puttering about in an area doing recon, it makes even less sense. And since we need very strong landing gear, with large tires, in order to land roughly in unprepared areas, it makes even less sense.
Because the plane is not flying 60,000+ feet up in altitude, you can actually find things on the ground like camoflaged troops. You don’t need to add any long range sensors to LARP like you can find things, because you can just use the optical devices known as the pilots eyeballs. Adding a Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) camera to the plane is nice, but those are mass produced for the civilian market, and are cheap. The military ones tend to be larger, but even still, there’s a limit to the price we can invent for them.
These planes don’t need any GPS guided munitions. First, you can just aim the plane and pull the trigger, whether that trigger is attached to some .50 cals, the 30mm shells of the GAU-8, dumb rockets, or whatever else. Second, the infantry and vehicles you’re attacking don’t have any fixed GPS coordinates, so it doesn’t make any sense anyway.
In order to get the fuel economy that we need to be able to patrol an area for a long period of time we need a prop engine. For the really small recon planes, that means a piston prop, and we can probably get our engine for close to $100,000 US, possibly less. For the larger planes, that means something like a $1,000,000 turboprop. These engines are relatively cheap to buy, in part because they are small, but also because they exist en masse for the civilian sector, and it’s a lot harder for the MIC to bullshit about how they absolutely need to pay 10x cost for an engine that performs identically to whatever Lycoming or Pratt and Whitney’s turboprop division is making.
As we covered in the fuel part of this PSA, these prop engines are cheaper to buy, but multiple times cheaper to operate. Additionally, these planes don’t need such huge amounts of thrust, which makes them cheaper to operate. This one part is somewhat irrelevant from the perspective of the MIC, since it’s hard for them to profit off increased fuel costs, what with that being a commodity, but it’s worth mentioning in the overall picture.
Since these planes are getting riddled with bullets, you simply can’t build them out of carbon fiber composites, or any other fancy material. Carbon fiber turns into dust when punctured by bullets, as opposed to metals which retain much of their structural integrity. And since they’re going to need to be patched up, you’re probably making them out of stainless steel.
Armed Air Recon planes, Forward Air Observers, and Close Air Support aircraft, pretty much regardless of their specialization, are going to be inherently cheap. All of these design decisions that make the planes good, also make them cheap. Cheap engines, cheap fuel use, no fancy sensors required or even useable (except cheap FLIR), cheap steel airframes, cheap munitions, fixed landing gear, a thick, easy to build straight wing. The list goes on. They are nothing more than steel airframes, prop engines, and dumb munitions. They are inherently inexpensive.
But worse than that, it’s hard for the MIC to bullshit them into being expensive. While there are some things about fighter planes, like the Carbon Fiber Composite airframes, that make the planes more expensive, they could be cheap as well. It’s just that they can bloviate about “muh technology,” and then attempt to justify a pricetag for the fighter, or any individual “tech” component that has no relationship to the manufacturing cost.
The AESA program for the F-16s may cost $1.8 billion overall, as the F-16s are also to receive upgradable software to extend F-16 service life for another 20 years and to ease F-16 operations in electronic warfare-contested environments.
While the F-16 AESA upgrade was envisioned to cost $1 million per aircraft, the decline in radar competitors has meant that the cost has ballooned per plane, according to the Teal Group.
AESA radars are nice, but like most “high tech,” stuff their pricetags are utterly divorced from their costs in a way that a piston prop, steel airframe, lightly armoured, low flying, slow flying recon/attack plane simply isn’t. There’s no point to putting an AESA radar, or any radar, on a recon plane since you can’t find things that aren’t moving on the ground with radar. An exception would be for naval recon, looking for surface ships, but in that case you want an actual AWACS, which fulfills an entirely different role.
It is true that the Air Force Bureaucracy has always hated providing anything for the army, because it makes these psychopathic generals feel less important. Like they’re nothing more than the bitchboys of the US Army. Which, in a real war, they actually would be.
The reason that the Army owns helicopters is because if the Air Force owned the troop transport helis they’d be bloviating constantly about how troop transport helicopters have no survivability in the “modern integrated air defense systems battlefields of the 21st century.” These are the people who pretended that the A-10 Warthog was going to explode seconds after entering Iraqi airspace before the Gulf War. Instead they flew almost 9,000 missions with just 6 losses, and 14 damaged aircraft.
However, more important is simply that they just can’t make profits off of these planes. Like I said, they’re steel airframes, prop engines, and dumb munitions, maybe with a cheap FLIR camera. It’s not like the Army bureaucracy gives a shit about the little peasants with sticks either. If they did, they’d fight for their troops to actually get AAR and CAS. But they don’t give a shit, so they don’t. Similarly, if the USAF could make tons of profits with these planes, then they’d at least tolerate them.
We saw with the A-10, where, if forced to have it, the USAF bureaucracy will insist upon loading it up with ultra high profit margin GPS guided “smart” munitions so they can extract those juicy profits from the plane and then get rewarded for their service with seven figure “consultant,” gigs with the very same corporations they made rich during their time “in service to their country.”
They’ve been trying to cancel the A-10 since its inception, and this flared up again from about 2015-2020. The massive pushback forced them to settle for an “upgrade package,” that does absolutely nothing for the plane but put money in the pockets of contractors, and doesn’t solve any fundamental issues with the plane, like the fact that it is massively overweight as a result of the USAF bureaucracy crippling it late in development. They tried the same thing with the OV-10 “Combat Dragon,” around 2013, but it didn’t stick because they couldn’t make enough money off it.
But ultimately, the army wants something in the skies to find shit for them, for the same reason that the police use helicopters to find alleged “bad guys”, and news stations use helicopters to make traffic reports. As anyone who has ever done any civilian flying or used the short range Line of Sight UAV’s on the civilian market will tell you 100-1,000 feet altitude gives you an amazing view of your surroundings. A view that rapidly diminishes in practicality as you go up further, since it’s harder to make out anything you’re looking at. If you’re looking for aircraft carriers, fine, go up to 10,000 ft. If you’re looking for camoflauged troops, fly as low and slow as possible.
But our rich, oppressed bureaucrats and Military Corporations can’t make any money off these planes, for the reasons mentioned earlier. They are inherently cheap, and it’s hard to justify any “high tech,” stuff that can be bullshitted to ultra high profit margins. But what if we had some type of plane that we could call super high tech, with super high tech “sensor systems,” that provided “situational awareness,” and “ninth generation stealth surveillance,” and “ISR” and “distributed lethality,” and “swarm tactics,” and other buzzwords?
DRONES TO THE RESCUE
Take a look at the shitty plane you see above you. Imagine there was a cockpit at the front. How much do you think you could justify for this small, straight wing plane? I want you to come up with a number. For bonus points, just know that the Cessna 170 that the O1 BirdDog was based off of costs about $30,000 on the market.
If you think this is an unfair comparison, being a used plane, then fine. Below we see the Cessna 208 Caravan. A much larger turboprop airplane that is capable of transporting over 10 passengers. It has very similar takeoff and landing weight, and about 80% the engine horsepower.
Unlike a UAV, this plane needs to have a cockpit, and in fact, seating for the passengers. It also needs to have an instrument panel, with the modern computer systems being far from cheap. Its cruise speed is just few kmph slower, and neither plane is good for aerobatics. The MQ-9, being chock full of fuel and having close to glider wings, has more endurance.
It is difficult to find exact comparisons, since the MQ-9 exists as a sort of sensor-truck. Its purpose is to fly around for a long time while looking at buildings, as sort of like an in-atmosphere spy satellite. You would think that this would be an extremely cheap aircraft. It literally just needs to putter about for a long time at relatively low speeds while there is a camera attached to it.
It’s operated remotely by a pilot and a sensor operator and costs $64.2 million per unit, which includes four aircraft, according to its fact sheet.
16+ million per drone. All that for a camera with wings attached to it. Six. Teen. Million. Dollars. For. A. Camera. With. Wings. Attached. To. It.
The problem is the price. In 2008 they were $14 million apiece, but the Air Force’s latest budget figures shows each new Reaper costs $32 million. That makes them even more expensive than the pricey, top-end AH-64E Apache attack helicopter. It is a lot for what is, at heart, supposed to be an expendable drone.
“Hey, General Atomics, can I have some shitty little plane with a turboprop that I can attach a camera to so it just flies around for a while?”
“No problem. That’ll be $32 million please. Thanks.”
Thirty. Two. Million. For. A. Shitty. Plane. With. A. Camera. Attached.
And make no mistake, that’s all these planes can actually do, surveillance of a building. Sure, you can load some missiles/bombs onto them, and use them as armament trucks, but you don’t need the fucking plane for that. Short range cruise missiles will do that job just fine. And even still, you could have done the exact same thing in a plane that, you know, had a guy inside. Only they couldn’t have bullshitted about “muh sensor technology,” and then charged $32 million per.
The field of view that is obtained from the tiny little camera, especially when zoomed in far enough to, maybe, possibly, actually see something of interest on the ground to any level of detail, is positively tiny. It’s the same problem that spy satellites have. When you zoom in 10x, you see a 10x smaller area. When you zoom in 100x, you see a 100x smaller area.
The vision that these high flying UAV’s provide is equivalent to putting up a straw to your eyeball, and closing your other eye. Go ahead and do that, then spin around a few times and see how utterly disorientated you are. Except don’t actually do that because you’ll probably hurt yourself.
The recon they give you is literally shittier than the O1 BirdDog from the 50’s, because those had guys in them who could use their eyeballs, not a glorified telescope to see jack squat from 60,000 ft up. Even if they flew them low to the ground, what would be the point? There’s just the one camera on the bottom of the plane. So sure, you could zoom out and see more, but still quite a bit less than a guy being able to look in arbitrary directions with his head and neck. The only way to give truly comparable image quality would be if you installed a whole bunch of cameras at every angle around the plane.
Sort of like the above, except with high quality cameras.
Except the cameras would all need to have infinite depth of field, or you’ll get a situation like this where it’s not focused on the right things.
Can you see the camoflauged troops in the background? Trick question, because there aren’t any. But if there were some then no, you would most definitely not be able to see them.
And good luck if you’re relying on the cameras autofocus to pick up on camoflauged troops, or other secretive items that don’t want to be seen. There is literally no way it can do this.
Even if you got the best cameras in the entire world, and even if the turbulence in the air didn’t make them shaky beyond usability, and even if they had infinitely deep depth of fields, and magically autofocused on the exact right areas, somehow, and even if other problems I didn’t even think of were solved, you’d still need the operator in the cuck shed halfway around the world to be surrounded with curved monitors that wrap around him just like a cockpit. And you’d need to be broadcasting ultra high resolution imagery from all these cameras at the same time, all relayed back to cuck command with satellites. Satellites that the MIC claims can be blown up with the anti-Satellite missiles multiple countries have.
Now I’m not going to go ahead and say “look, we’ve got anti-satellite missiles, you can’t use satellites in WW3.” For all I know, these basically don’t work at all, and the US, Russia, China, and India are just full of shit when they claim otherwise. But I mean, all four countries have made at least one successful shot against their own satellites with these missiles, and it’s not exactly a civilizational achievement on par with the moon landing to hit a satellite with a missile.
CONTRADICTORY BULLSHIT OF THE MILITARY INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX
- Unmanned Aerial Vehicles which require satellites to communicate with are the bleeding edge of the future of warfare.
- We’ve got these missiles that make blowing up satellites as easy as pressing a button. So I mean anything requiring satellites is junk in WW3.
I can’t tell you which is bullshit, although I lean towards the former. But even if it were true that we could use UAV’s, what would be the point? Our military is not limited by meatbags, but by fuel.
Look, having some pilots die is a tragedy. Losing a nuclear war is a bigger tragedy. If we are using a plane like the MQ-9 Reaper, with its 4,000 lbs of onboard fuel, we better be getting our fuels worth out of that thing because that’s what actually limits our military. It might sound cruel, but it’s not like the infantry they’re supporting are invincible either. The purpose of the military is not to have people not die in the military, the purpose is to win wars.
For an extreme example, let’s pretend we’ve got fighter planes defending an attack against an aircraft carriers. Then some dipshit replaces our manned fighters, which are good, with unmanned fighters, which gargle balls. If our manned fighters could have repelled the attack, at the cost of three pilots lives, versus the drones utterly failing, but not having any pilots die by definition, that doesn’t really do us any good if our aircraft carrier is now sinking to the bottom of the ocean, now does it?
EXCEPT THAT’S NOT ACTUALLY THE POINT OF OUR MILITARY
Which brings us to the second “benefit,” of UAV’s. Because nobody can die in them, our MIC can justify bullshit foreign interventions on behalf of Globo Homo Schlomo. One of the things that gets the goy-peasants jimmies rustled the hardest is when we have soldiers coming home in boxes. With UAV’s, that can’t happen. So it’s all just pure profit with much less political downside.
In a real war, per plane/fuel efficacy is what we actually care about. In bullshit, unpopular wars, just not having pilots die is what they care about. What they’re trying to optimize is minimizing political fallout back home. What I’m trying to maximize is the ability for the military to actually win wars. These are two very different things.
HOW TO FIX UAV’S
But wait, I have a solution to the issues with UAV’s. This One Weird Trick that makes them absolutely amazing. You see, one of the problems with them is how little you can see with their camera, as mentioned earlier. And don’t just take my word for it.
Sensor operators here speak of 4-hour, wrist-fatiguing stretches spent aiming a UAV’s onboard infrared camera at a single vehicle around Afghanistan or Iraq. Spotting roadside bombs and identifying bombmakers are other roles well-suited to a UAV’s “persistent stare.”
But what if I told you that we could replace the horrible field of view of the sensor package on these UAV’s. Wouldn’t that be awesome? Well, we have just the thing. We have these awesome new sensors developed in secret by Lockheed Martin Skunkworks. These are dual redundant, stealth, overlapping FOV electromagnetic optical imaging devices that can even do depth perception. These things are absolutely amazing. Unlike radar, they can image what you’re looking at. Unlike infrared, the part of the electromagnetic spectrum they look for doesn’t get easily absorbed by the atmosphere. Since they’re passive, not sending out any active signal, they’re impossible to detect, and impossible to jam.
The colloquial term for them is “eyeballs,” and most people have some. But wait, these things are attached to a complicated gymbal system that allows us to see in a true spherical Field of View. This gymbal system is amazing. It allows us to control the sensor package in roll, yaw, and pitch.
The colloquial term for this is “your neck.” Although the entire bio-mechanical system involves this thing we believe to be called “the human musculo-skeletal system.” It’s all very high tech and amazing. It’s just so amazing. You can see with this baby just as well as if you were actually there in the plane!
Having takeoff and landing crews stationed closer to the front line avoids the 2-second delay associated with controlling them via satellite from halfway around the world.
Another one of the problems they have is the satellites they need to communicate with. These can be jammed or potentially blown up, and even in the best case scenarios force 2 second latencies between operator and aircraft. But we have this amazing new piece of tech that doesn’t just cut the latency by 10%, or even 50%, but down to zero. Literally zero nanoseconds of latency between the operators perception, reaction, and implementation of said reaction on the aircraft.
This is something called a cockpit. What you see before you is called a “replicant.” This is a creature that, for all intents and purposes, is just like a human being. But trust me, it’s not actually one, it just acts entirely like one. It’s really a robot.
These replicants might not be hyper intelligent, but they’re as smart as the typical human, sometimes smarter, and can intelligently work with ground forces, making sense of complicated battlezones using their 720* Dual Redundant Stealth Electromagnetic Optical Imaging Depth Perceiving sensor package that goes by the acronym E.Y.E.B.A.L.L.S. to those in the know. This provides them with the excellent Situational Awareness that is necessary to survive in seventh generation warfare.
Now you might be saying.
Isn’t that just a guy in a plane.
Absolutely not. The idea that the best way to improve unmanned planes would be to make them manned is absurd. Instead we make them higher tech by putting in humanlike robots with the E.Y.E.B.A.L.L.S. sensor package system, with great SA and an advanced artificial intelligence that can accurately replicate human intellect. It’s a proven, robust solution.
It really is amazing what a difference a little marketing makes, isn’t it? Take the above cruise missile. I mean it’s good, right? It’s basically a dumb airplane that flies to a target and explodes. But what if, and hear me out, we instead gave it bigger wings so it was more maneuverable. Then we gave it a cannon, so that instead of flying to the target and exploding it could fly around and fire cannon shells at everything in the area with great precision. And what if we gave it our artificial intelligence replicant, so it was just as smart as a human being. And then we gave it a cockpit, so it could make use of the dual redundant depth perceiving stealth EM Optical Imaging True Spherical FOV devices that all of our replicants have?
And then what if we called it, like, the A-10 Warthog. Wouldn’t that be a cool thing that doesn’t currently exist?
Cruise missiles are great and have their purpose, at least assuming that the GPS satellites they rely on are not getting taken down. They are basically the only planes that shouldn’t have people inside of them. Other than that, an unmanned plane is a broken plane, and you should be putting guys in your planes all the time. It’s a really great piece of technology, the whole “put a dude in there,” tech. According to many, it is absolutely OP.
It’s half disgusting and half hilarious that with the rise of money-printing UAV’s the parasitical military industrial complex is re-inventing shit that existed at least as far back as WW2. Imagine you want to do an attack on something like an aircraft carrier. You’d send hundreds of planes right? Well you see that’s just a silly relic of old fashioned third generation warfare you luddite. It’s just not –
What if those planes didn’t have guys in them?
Oh my god! Why you’re a military genius using “swarm tactics,” and “distributed lethality.” There’s absolutely no way for our CIWS or paltry fighter plane sorties to deal with that amount of planes in the sky, each of them armed with missiles. I mean we just physically don’t have enough fighters, enough CIWS shells, enough SAMs to deal with that level –
What if the planes did have guys in them?
Absolute garbage. That’s never going to work. Just such a disgusting rel-
What if the planes had guys in them, but then they ejected over the sea, and at that point the planes flew with remote control.
Fuck me you’re a military genius. If the planes have guys in them, we magically have the numbers to (somehow) stop an attack on our AC’s with hundreds of small prop planes. But if those guys eject, the planes magically become like 1,000x more lethal and harder to hit for literally no reason at all, even if their individual performance is objectively worse.
Look, these people are just full of shit. The reason they’re pushing UAV’s, and not just rugged, simple, cheap, prop driven manned aircraft that are better in every single way that matters, is because UAV’s make them a ton of money, and lead to less political fallout since no pilots can die in them. That’s it. The only reason these twatter dipshits are bloviating about how “drones use swarm tactics to flood the skies and blah blah,” is because our parasitical air force bureaucracies have stolen this ability from us because that didn’t put the maximum dollar signs in their pockets.
You can “flood the skies,” with a shitty MQ-9 Reaper drone for 4,000 lbs of fuel. Or, for less fuel, you can “flood the skies,” with OV-10 Bronco’s that are actually fucking great at finding and destroying things in conjunction with artillery and infantry. The fact that the Azerbaijanis could get value with easily shot down UAV’s, that weren’t even shot down, just shows how easily they could have accomplished this with manned aircraft that were actually good.
If you were a soldier, would you rather have 10 shitty MQ-9 Reaper UAVs flying 60,000 ft overhead, not able to find shit, and easily blown up by your SAMs, or 10 A-10 warthogs flown 100-1,000 ft overhead, ready to pounce on you the second you show yourself?
It’s really not that complicated. Put a fucking guy in the plane.
We’ll get to the Motorcycle Infantry post next. Also known as “Infantry Mobility is good. Who knew?”
NOTE: None of the above criticism of UAVs applies to line of sight UAVs, like Quadcopters. These do not suffer from satellite lag, or rely on satellites at all. They are also truly expendable, very cheap, and fly very low to the ground, giving them decent vision. The Russians use these things for Artillery Spotting, essentially forward air control, and there’s no question that they do in fact have some small niche role here and there. It’s the long range UAVs that are the LARPers.