Am I missing something here?
A recent news piece on an Internet news site indicated the Pentagon must re-compete a proposal for a close air support aircraft intended for the Afghan Air Force, and our Air Force later. The plan is to buy (manufacture and supply) this aircraft at the current projected cost of $18 million per plane.
Where is the money for this purchase coming from?
The American taxpayer.
The Pentagon wants the taxpayer to provide a combat aircraft to an air force which is apparently, at best, marginally functional, flies no combat missions and is currently under investigation for smuggling drugs and weapons on training flights.
Given our popularity over there and the high level of efficiency of the Afghan military/security forces, do we really want to provide this type weapon system for probable use against us and others in the region in the future?
I’m no military or political expert, but this does not sound like the best idea that has come along recently, even if it means impact to jobs in Kansas and Nevada — the locations of the primary manufacturers if a U.S. company wins the proposal and fly-off. Can you imagine what a disgruntled Afghan pilot could do before he could be shot down?
This sounds like a boondoggle by the Pentagon and probably some of the folks in Congress wanting to help, especially their constituents and bank account.