It is yet another sign that the New Air Combat Capability (NACC) office, is a failure for going native to the F-35 program instead of representing the interest of Australia. The F-35 propaganda and the NACC have a lot in common. Both are a lie.
Along with that, the following comment show just how stupid Smith's advisers really are:
Mr Smith said that, putting aside concerns about delays to the JSFs, standard Super Hornets and Growlers used by the US during the campaign in Libya had demonstrated the aircraft's high-edge performance.
Yeah, sure. A broken down legacy IADS.
Part of the justification of 100 RAAF F-35s was that it was going to be the only fighter airframe. Its original goal was to replace the legacy F-18 and F-111.
The announcement of making the first batch of Super Hornets long term means that the original justification for those aircraft (a 10 year stop-gap to reduce risk for F-35 delays) is now gone.
The idea of a 4th squadron of F-35s (which would have brought the total up to 100), is now dead.
If a second batch of Super Hornets are ordered, the plan for third operational F-35 squadron is in jeopardy. Claims by the corrupt entrenched Defence bureaucracy that they are "committed" to the F-35 now mean that the RAAF will be lucky if it sees two squadrons of F-35s; or any.
With very limited money, it is unlikely that the expensive cost-per-flying-hour F-35 will fit into existing legacy F-18 operating budgets.
The Super and F-35 are not up for emerging Pacific Rim threats. For any other kind of threat, the Super will have some use.
“It’s about $37 million for the CTOL aircraft, which is the air force variant.”
- Colonel Dwyer Dennis, U.S. JSF Program Office brief to Australian journalists, 2002-