POGO’s selective quoting of APA

When it comes to bashing the F-35, POGO likes to quote Air Power Australia, an Australian defense issues think-tank consisting of scientists and RAAF veterans. Air Power Australia is led by renowned scientist Dr Carlo Kopp, and includes other reputable figures such as veteran RAAF pilot Peter Goon (ret.). Most of their articles and analysis have been written by Kopp and Goon.

APA conducts rigorous, holistic technical analysis of aircraft, missiles, radar, IAD systems, and other weapon platforms to ascertain which platform is best suited to Australia’s and America’s defense needs in the threat environments of today and (projected) tomorrow. It is very friendly towards the US and wants it to have a strong, dominant military. It also speaks out against ridiculous comparisons of America’s defense budget to that of other countries.

POGO likes to quote APA only when the criticize the F-35 (which they do often and harshly). But it never makes any mention of what APA says about the Super Bug and the F-22, or the aircraft flown by America’s enemies.

That’s because quoting the APA in full (i.e. telling the whole story of what the APA says) would utterly refute and undermine POGO’s lies about the F-22 and its (temporary*) extolling of the Super Bug’s supposed virtues.

The truth is that the APA says, in short, that while the F-35 is inferior to the latest Chinese and Russian designs, the Super Bug is even more inferior and substandard, and that the F-22 is the only design capable of surviving against, and defeating, the latest Chinese and Russian aircraft. Here’s a quote straight from the horse’s mouth:

The only US design with the kinematic performance, stealth performance and sensor capability to be able to confront the J-20 [J-XX] with viable combat lethality and survivability is the F-22A Raptor, or rather, evolved and enhanced variants of the existing configuration of this aircraft. 

The US Navy F/A-18E/F Super Hornet is outclassed in every respect, and would be as ineffective against a mature J-XX [J-20] as it is against the F-22A Raptor. 

All variants of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter would be equally so outclassed, assuming this failed project even progresses to any kind of actual production. 

All US Air Force, US Navy and allied legacy fighters are outclassed in much the same manner, and are ineffective kinematically and in sensor capability against this class of threat system.

From the perspectives of both technological strategy and military grand strategy, the J-XX [J-20] is the final nail in the coffin of the utterly failed “Gates recapitalisation plan” for United States and allied tactical fighter fleets. Apologists for the “Gates fighter recapitalisation plan” will no doubt concoct a plethora of reasons as to why the J-XX [J-20] should be ignored, as they did exactly one year ago when the Russians unveiled the T-50 PAK-FA stealth fighter. 

The material reality is simple. If the United States does not reverse course in its tactical air fleet and air defence recapitalisation planning, the United States will lose the Pacific Rim to China, with all of the practical and grand strategic consequences which follow from that.

APA has established, through rigorous analysis, that the F-22 is very much needed and is far from being the white elephant that POGO hacks and other anti-defense propagandists often allege it to be. Furthermore, APA has pointed out that the F-22’s true cost is just 150 mn, and that its critics continue to concoct untrue stories about its cost, design, and performance.

And APA is right about that. Contrary to POGO’s lies, the F-22’s unit cost is just 150 mn, which is nowadays much less than the unit cost of any of the three F-35 variants (the cheapest, the F-35A Air Force variant, now costs 197 mn per copy).

I repeat: according to APA analysis, the F-35 and the Super Bug are both inferior to the latest Chinese and Russian designs, and the F-22 is the only aircraft capable of defeating them. APA’s analysis has established the need for further production of F-22 aircraft.

But of course, POGO hacks, who only want to cut America’s defense as deeply as they can, and ultimately to gut it totally, don’t want you to hear that. They want you to hear only the bad things that APA says about US fighter programs. Thus, POGO has utterly and deliberately failed to mention anything APA says about the F-22 or the Super Bug.*


*POGO extols the Super Bug’s supposed virtues only temporarily. Why? Because it’s a part of the liberal “replacement technique”, which liberals, including POGO hacks, routinely use against weapon programs. The technique works this way: liberals target a weapon system for closure, and when confronted with the question “what would the military use?”, they point to a different platform… even if it’s a completely different and disparate one. Once program A gets closed, they turn their guns against program B – the very program they claimed was the “replacement” or the “alternative” – and they target it for closure as well, even though they extolled it as the “alternative” just a few months earlier. If the F-35 were cancelled, it would not be 5 minutes before POGO and other liberal anti-defense hacks would target the Super Bug for termination.


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