Wednesday, April 23, 2014

WATCH: USAF Chief of Staff Explains Decision To Eliminate A-10 Fleet In 6 1/2 Minutes; "Least Operationally Impactful"

U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff General Mark Welsh took to the National Press Club this morning to explain the logic behind the Air Force decision to eliminate the A-10 fleet of attack planes.

He suggested the decision to eliminate a fleet was made because the FY15 budget for the Air Force is approximately $20B smaller than it had been projected to be just three years ago, and that "trimming around the edges" was not an option.

In 6 1/2 minutes, he goes through the options they considered in arriving at the decision. "It's not emotional.  It's logical. It's analytical. It makes eminent sense from a military perspective IF you have to make these kinds of cuts. Nobody likes it. I don't like it."

(article continues below video)

The USAF decision is drawing particular attention in Arizona, where the A-10 "Warthog" has long been a key component of Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson.

It has become a hot-button issue in the re-election campaign of Rep. Ron Barber (D-CD2), as apparent Republican opponent - and, retired AF Colonel - Martha McSally accuses the incumbent of not doing enough to prevent the decision.  A bi-partisan group in Congress is promising to block the fleet elimination.

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