Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

11/28/2012 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

USMC has been delievered a non-combat operational aircraft.

The U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) has taken delivery of its first operational F-35B, Joint  Strike Fighter (JSF). Unfortunately, the aircraft is beset by so many troubles the Marines cannot use it for combat.

The F-35 is impressive, but the Marines need it to work and taxpayers deserve accountability from the military-industrial complex.

The F-35 is impressive, but the Marines need it to work and taxpayers deserve accountability from the military-industrial complex.

Highlights

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

11/28/2012 (1 year ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: F-35, Marines, testing, cost, delivery


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - In the early days of World War II, the German U-boat fleets suffered with defective torpedoes. U-boat aces fired salvo after salvo, only to see their well aimed torpedoes miss, or explode early, alerting allied destroyer escorts.

Arguing with his commander, U-boat captain Wolfgang Luth asked, "How can I be expected to fight a war with a wooden rifle?"

The USMC now has a wooden rifle, and a very expensive one at that. Each F-35B costs over $200 million. However, the aircraft are unsuitable for combat because of extensive technical difficulties and backlogged work.

Although delivered, the F-35 will not be combat ready until at least 2015.

For example, the aircraft is designed to pair with a special, super high-tech helmet. The helmet features a streaming video visor display that allows the pilot to see what is around the plane in all directions. Essentially, it allows him or her to see the enemy, even through the floor of the cockpit.

The problem is that the helmet display suffers from lag, which is a temporary delay in the display of the information. In a split-second decision situation, the lag could prove fatal. Lag is considered a bane in the online gaming world, causing players of video games great frustration. Imagine now, how serious lag becomes when life, death, and hundreds of millions of dollars are on the line.

Also significant, is that the software the system uses consists of some 24 million lines of code, most of which still requires checking.

The aircraft also requires extensive testing of its weapons capability. Only recently did the F-35 complete a test where it dropped a bomb for the first time. The tests matter because the plane carries its weapons inside its body, a requirement to maintain its stealthy nature. To deploy a weapon, the F-35 opens a bay door, releases its weapon, then closes the door, all within a few seconds. During the time the door is open, the aircraft is more vulnerable to radar detection. This system must work flawlessly to minimize operational risk and therefore requires much more testing.

In addition to the testing, the Navy has already spent millions on new facilities to house and maintain the aircraft. Among the procured items are two new aircraft carriers that are being designed to handle the advanced fighter.

There is little doubt the Marines need the new plane. Most of the USMC's aircraft in service are showing signs of age and the well-worn F-18s and AV8B Harriers are approaching the end of their operational lifespans. Unfortunately, there are several issues that remain to be grappled with.

First, the military-industrial complex continues to consume billions in taxpayer dollars, and is openly delivering  a non-combat serviceable platform to the USMC. In a time of growing fiscal austerity, this is not an affordable luxury.

Second, the Marines both need, and mightily deserve operational equipment that will ensure they can succeed in their missions without unduly jeopardizing their lives. They should not be handed wooden rifles. That's not what Marines are for.

The hymn, "The Halls of Montezuma" tells us the streets of heaven are guarded by United States Marines. For the work they do, they deserve better.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for August 2014
Refugees:
That refugees, forced by violence to abandon their homes, may find a generous welcome and the protection of their rights.
Oceania: That Christians in Oceania may joyfully announce the faith to all the people of that region.



Comments


More U.S.

Why I Said No to the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge: Embryonic Stem Cell Research Is Deadly Watch

Image of I was approached to take the Ice Bucket Challenge to help bring an end to ALS. I said No. I have tried to explain why I said No in this article. I hope it is a helpful contribution in our public discussion. As a Christian, it is never easy to be seen as seemingly unwilling to support a noble cause such as the eradication of a debilitating disease. However, it is vital that we stand for for the fundamental and foundational moral truth which underlies every effort to end disease, the dignity of every human person, including embryonic human persons.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

I was approached to take the Ice Bucket Challenge to help bring an end to ALS. I said No. I have tried to explain why I said No in this article. I hope it is a helpful contribution in our public discussion. As a Christian, it is never easy to be seen as seemingly ... continue reading


SHAKEN WINE: Strong earthquake jolts California's wine region Watch

Image of The weekend's temblor was felt widely throughout the region, from more than 200 miles south of Napa and as far east as the Nevada border.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A magnitude 6.0 earthquake rumbled through the early Sunday morning hours in the heart of California's wine country. The epicenter was near the city of Napa in the Golden State's north. Fires erupted in a mobile home park where four homes were destroyed and two ... continue reading


Money is NOT the Root of Evil: Living Simplicity Watch

Image of Simplicity is not about the quantity of the goods of the earth we possess. It is about our relationship to them. Jesus said - Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Matt. 6:21).

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

Learning to live in evangelical Simplicity strips away what impedes love. In finding our proper relationship to the goods of the earth- not rejecting them, craving them, or turning them into an idol- we can learn true freedom. Our eyes are opened and everything begins ... continue reading


Is Transgenderism a Mental Disorder or a Right? Watch

Image of Pope Emeritus Benedict was absolutely correct when he said, - the profound falsehood of this theory and of the anthropological revolution contained within it is obvious. - Gender is a gift. It is also a given. The dangers of the Gender Identity Movement are becoming increasingly clear.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

In a culture where freedom has been redefined as a right to choose anything and liberty has degenerated into license, the newspeak of the age has declared the instrumental use of the body of another to be sexual freedom. It is not freedom. It turns people into ... continue reading


WORST YET TO COME? Islamic State threat 'beyond anything we've seen,' Pentagon says Watch

Image of IS is

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online has been keeping very close watch on the atrocities being committed by Islamic State in both Iraq and Syria, and according to a top government official - the worst is yet to come. According to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, the sophistication, ... continue reading


Lawsuit dropped against devil worshiper in Oklahoma Watch

Image of Lawyers representing Archbishop Paul Coakley had earlier demanded the return of a communion wafer obtained by the group.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The leader of a satanic group in Oklahoma City had threatened that he and his followers would defile a consecrated communion wafer as an offering to Satan as a carnal sacrifice at a "Black Mass" ceremony inside Oklahoma City's Civic Center Music Hall. The ... continue reading


Should Americans have job preference over unskilled-illegal immigrants? President Obama doesn't think so Watch

Image of New polls are showing that Americans are tired of illegal immigrants getting benefits at the expense of citizens and legal immigrants.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

According to the Associated Press: "one of the more popular requests among business and family groups is a change in the way green cards are counted," which would "essentially free up some 800,000 additional visas the first year." LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading


Caught in the act! This brutal video shows a CHP officer beating a woman on the side of the freeway Watch

Image of 51-year-old Marlene Pinnock is suing the California Highway Patrol after she was brutally assaulted by a patrolman on July 1.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A viral video has landed a California Highway Patrol officer in huge trouble after it was posted on YouTube. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The California Highway Patrol has announced that it has suspended officer Daniel Andrew after a video was posted online that ... continue reading


What Pope Francis said to make millions think about Abortion Watch

Image of On Saturday, August 16, 2014, during the apostolic visit to Korea, Pope Francis made a loud statement. However, he did not use words. He did not have to. His prophetic action brought to mind a saying attributed to his namesake, Francis of Asisi - I preach the Gospel at all times, but sometimes I use words.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

When Francis began his service from the chair of Peter, much hoopla filled the media about some alleged softening in the opposition of the Catholic Church to what are dismissively referred to as complicated "moral issues" such as abortion. Sadly, even some in the ... continue reading


Supreme Court Stays Redefinition of Marriage in Virginia Watch

Image of The U.S. Supreme Court overturned a U.S. Circuit court ruling, redefining the institution of marriage.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to delay the implementation of an appeals court ruling which struck down the expressed will of the voters of the State of Virginia that marriage is capable only between one man and one woman. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Corinthians 1:1-9
1 Paul, called by the will of God to be an apostle of ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 145:2-3, 4-5, 6-7
2 Day after day I shall bless you, I shall praise ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 24:42-51
42 'So stay awake, because you do not know the day ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for August 28th, 2014 Image

St. Augustine of Hippo
August 28: St. Augustine of Hippo is the patron of brewers because of his ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter