What Is Causing The Recent Spate Of US Military Crashes?

Authored by Duane Norman via Free Market Shooter blog,

Recently it was revealed that the US Department of Defense issued a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) regarding air transit near a Chinese airbase in the East African country of Djibouti.  The notice was issued after pilots were allegedly targeted with lasers originating from the Chinese airbase:

On May 3, 2018, Dana White, the Pentagon’s chief spokesperson, said lasers from China’s base in the East African country had harassed American aviators on between two and 10 occasions, resulting in two, unspecified minor injuries to the C-130 crew. She also indicated that there had been an increase in these activities recently, prompting American officials to make a formal complaint. The issue had prompted the U.S. military to issue a formal warning to its own aircrews in April 2018, which did not specifically name who was responsible.

“I’d have to ask you [to] ask the Chinese about the motivation,” White said. “But it’s serious, we take it seriously, and that’s why we demarched them.”

It has been previously hypothesized that Chinese “hacking” played a role in a number of US Navy crashes last year.  As a result, some has speculated that “hacking” could be to blame for a recent increase in US aviation crashes.

However, it doesn’t take much examination to come up with a far more plausible theory – lack of proper maintenance for older airframes, some of which can be attributed to the 2013 budget sequester.

For starters, let’s take a look at the list of US military aviation crashes in 2018, as per Wikipedia:

  • January 21: A U.S. Army AH-64 Apache crashed during training at the base in the Mojave Desert, California. Both pilots onboard were killed.

  • March 14: A US Navy F/A-18E/F Super Hornet crashed roughly a mile off the end of the runway at Naval Air Station Key West in Florida. Both crew members died after they ejected.

  • March 15: A US military HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter crashed in Western Iraq, killing all seven aboard.

  • April 3: A U.S. Marine Corps AV-8B Harrier crashed in Djibouti shortly after take-off.

  • April 4: A USMC CH-53E Super Stallion crashed near Naval Air Field El Centro, killing all 4 crewmen.

  • April 5: A US Air Force Flight Demonstration Team F-16 crashed in Nevada, killing the pilot.

  • April 13: A United States Air Force F-22 Raptor fighter jet was damaged when it experienced an engine malfunction during takeoff. Apparently the left engine basically stopped working on takeoff, suddenly depriving the pilot of enough thrust to continue ascent after he had already raised the landing gear, forcing for a hard, belly landing that lasted for more than a mile.

  • April 24: A United States Air Force F-16 crashed during an emergency landing. The pilot ejected safely.

  • May 2: United States Air Force Lockheed WC-130H Hercules 65-0968, of the 156th Airlift Wing of the Puerto Rico Air National Guard, crashed on Georgia State Route 21 in Port Wentworth, Georgia while on climbout from Hilton Head International Airport and caught fire, killing all nine on board. This was to be the aircraft’s last flight before retirement at the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group (AMARG) base in Arizona.

Of all of these crashes, the one that arouses the most suspicion is that of the AV-8B “Harrier” jump-jet, due to be replaced by the (troubled) F-35B in the near future…

The Harrier’s design is over 50 years old, with 172 aircraft losses listed on Wikipedia, and likely with other losses not listed on the page resulting from damaged aircraft being removed from service and/or cannibalized for parts.  While combat losses (particularly in Desert Storm) are among the Harrier losses, the majority of the jet’s losses have been due to crashes, owing to the aircraft’s design requiring a great deal of maintenance to keep it airworthy.  Additionally, the Harrier is known for having a greater degree of difficulty to operate, some of which is in part to its unique (and dated) design, as well as the aircraft’s many flight control surfaces.

Thus, even though a US aircraft crashed in close proximity to a Chinese airbase known for shooting lasers at US pilots, it is difficult at best to attribute yet another Harrier crash to hacking or external interference.

Aging airframes often require more extensive maintenance.  Unfortunately a combination of both Congressional inability to act and poor Pentagon decisions have resulted in major neglect for the airframes that need it the most, as The War Zone points out:

The continuing inability of Congress to pass a formal annual budget has only made the situation worse, making it difficult for the U.S. military to conduct serious long-term planning and properly arrange its spending priorities. U.S. government officials and lawmakers repeatedly pointed out the devastating impact this would and was having on readiness, including the safety and availability of military aircraft fleets.

To be certain, poor decision making on the part of many of the services further exacerbated these issues. New weapon systems repeatedly took precedence over readiness issues, including routine training, preventive maintenance, and supporting the logistics chain for existing equipment. By 2016, for example, this deliberate neglect prevented the Marines from flying more than 30 percent of their CH-53 heavy lift helicopters – one of which crashed earlier in April 2018, killing four Marines – at any one time.

We also know from public statements that the overall availability of certain types of aircraft has slipped to atrocious levels. In November 2017, the Marine Corps disclosed to Congress that the availability rate for their CH-53s was still under 40 percent. Earlier in 2017, it became public that more than 60 percent of all Navy and Marine Corps F/A-18 Hornets and Super Hornets were unusable on any given day. 

It is not a coincidence that several of the US aircraft that have crashed in 2018 are mentioned above – older airframes that have been passed over for more expensive “stealth” aircraft, which oddly enough, have higher maintenance costs, in spite of their newer age, owing to high maintenance costs for “low-observable” flight.

And even though a “newer” F-22 airframe was among the crashed aircraft, with one experiencing a hard “belly” landing this year after an engine flameout…

…a similar incident occurred in 2012 due to a mistake made by an F-22 student pilot:

On May 31st, 2012 a student pilot on his second solo flight in the F-22 didn’t apply enough power before retracting the jet’s landing gear during departure. The F-22 sunk down and careened its way across the runway on its belly before coming to a stop. The cost to repair that jet was a whopping $35M and took six years to accomplish the task.

The official details surrounding this year’s crash make the possibility of a cover-up distinctly possible, especially given the F-22’s troubled history:

Considering that the F-22 can fly with just one engine, and a similar incident was blamed on pilot error, this could be the USAF’s attempt to shift the blame for a pilot mistake onto Congress for providing a lack of maintenance funds.  Even if the incident can be attributed to an engine flameout, the F-22 has already been cancelled at 187 copies, being passed over for the poorly-designed F-35, so it is possible that aircraft maintenance dollars are being spent on the F-35, with Lockheed at risk of a reduction or cancellation of the project.

Given all of the domestic problems the US Air Force has keeping its older aircraft airborne, and the location of all of the aviation accidents, it is highly unlikely that any of these incidents can be chalked up to hacking or external interference from a peer state.  Although it is important to point out that this could be the case, and the average citizen will likely never know if aircraft losses are due to Chinese/Russian interference…

…it is far more likely that the recent crashes are due to failures by the Pentagon’s inability to compensate for Congress slightly pricking the balloon of out-of-control defense spending.  Sadly, it seems that the end result of all this will be more big-money contracts doled out to put more inferior weapons systems in the US inventory.  

Comments

JimmyJones Tue, 05/08/2018 - 13:26 Permalink

Ask Q, I believe that this Q thinks there is some type of internal Civil war going on that has involved these crashes.  There are no coincidences.  https://qanonposts.com/

Think LOGICALLY. Mass exodus in DC? Mass exodus - corporate CEOs? Why? Who has the POWER? Who has the CONTROL? If POTUS was NOT IN CONTROL would they be retreating? Who is the AG? Who MUST approve the firing/dismissal of DOJ officials? Re_read DOJ org change (open source - more in pipe) Who is the FBI director? Who MUST approve the firing/dismissal of FBI agents? Re_read FBI org change (open source - more in pipe) If SESSIONS & WRAY are DC SWAMP/DEEP STATE why are they cleaning their respective houses? Use LOGIC. Why are they slow walking unredacted data? Why are they slow walking doc disclosures? Why is the WH backing up DOJ? What if the same data is being used by other investigators? What does it mean if a grand jury is impanelled? Why are confusing questions asked as to outcome re: Mueller? What would be the purpose of creating confusion? What was Sessions' Senate confirmation vote? What was RR's Senate confirmation vote? If RR is dirty, Mueller must also be dirty. If Mueller is dirty, RR must also be dirty. Common denominator. Why did Sessions pick RR? Everyone has an opinion. Few have the facts. Few know the plan. Midterms [save & push]? Swing voters to retake House/Senate? Impeachment proceedings (open source) initiated? Power at all costs? Blue wave? Use LOGIC. Why must the DOJ & FBI be cleaned FIRST? What is the DOJ responsible for? What is the FBI responsible for? Why did HRC get a free pass? Use LOGIC. Define single shooter. Who is HUBER? Define IG. When does SESSIONS step back in? Already is? Why did SESSIONS secretly engage HUBER? Why did SESSIONS reveal HUBER? Timing is everything. Department of Justice does not discuss ongoing investigations or confirm specific matters, What about the active investigation into leaks? "Horowitz oversees a nationwide workforce of more than 450 special agents, auditors, inspectors, attorneys, and support staff whose mission is to detect and deter waste, fraud, abuse, and misconduct in DOJ programs and personnel, and to promote economy and efficiency in Department operations." Why did MP step into the C_A prior to Sec of State? They are deeply connected. Think Offshore. MIL INTEL providing support during this time? Why are select EO's aggressively being written and put into law? State/C_A next? Think logically. No outside comms. JUSTICE. Q

 

That said IMO, the F-35 is garbage compared to the F-22 (way more weapons capability)

Buckaroo Banzai Buckaroo Banzai Tue, 05/08/2018 - 13:37 Permalink

Oh yeah, back to the article itself.

"However, it doesn’t take much examination to come up with a far more plausible theory – lack of proper maintenance for older airframes, some of which can be attributed to the 2013 budget sequester."

Older airframes can be kept airworthy for a long, long, long time, as long as they are maintained on a timely basis, with quality parts, by fully qualified personnel.

Take a look at the demographics of the US Armed Forces in the Current Year-- especially in the non-combat roles. Women, blehcks, and hispanics as far as the eye can see. An endless parade of diversity hires.

This isn't hard to figure out.

 

In reply to by Buckaroo Banzai

MoreSun Ahmeexnal Tue, 05/08/2018 - 13:45 Permalink

While the jew supremacist led & financed (coerced U.S. taxpayer) military industrial complex jets fall from the sky, the most important battle in history is being fought by three aging ladies against the Anti Freedom of Speech jew supremacist terrorists of the world:

Why don't some MEN step up and fight for their release. There are Attorneys, Senators, Congressmen, Judges, Media Moguls, Billionaires, & Heads of State that could wield some benevolent powers to bring about their release and freedom.  

But these men are either COWARDS or they have been bought off, or Coerced by the same jew supremacists that have imprisoned these upstanding ladies in the first place.

Dear God please effect the release of these women: Ursula Haverbeck, Monika Schaefer, Sylvia Stoltz from their jew supremacist terrorist oppressors !

http://tomatobubble.com/haverbeck_schaefer.html

In reply to by Ahmeexnal

thatthingcanfly Buckaroo Banzai Tue, 05/08/2018 - 13:58 Permalink

I can speak to the H-53E problems.

I was flying these birds 15 years ago; they were tired airframes even then. Each aircraft has a total lifetime hours limit. But when that limit is reached, the DoN can elect to "SLEP" them. That's Service Life Extension Program - meaning they let the Navy/Marine Corps keep flying them for another 5000 hours.

There are, of course, a lot of parts on a helicopter than are "wear parts" that are supposed to be changed out every so often. But the chassis wears out too; and then all the bearings, driveshafts, gearboxes, rotor blades, and engines that produce vibrations at myriad frequencies start interacting in ways not originally intended. Hard to describe, but the birds "feel" like they're tired. Just plain tired. Can't really teach that feeling in pilot training - it's something we drivers learned by getting familiar with the aircraft over time.

I'm glad to see Sikorski's CH-53K program coming along nicely. They've delivered the first handful to the Marines already. Very impressive bird; and not a day too soon either. The heavy-lift capability has been in serious need of an upgrade for at least 15 years.

In reply to by Buckaroo Banzai

thatthingcanfly Scaliger Tue, 05/08/2018 - 17:20 Permalink

Scalinger, you obviously don't know a thing about helicopters if you think how HIGH they can fly is an important design characteristic.

Maybe if you were worried about losing tail rotor authority on an Alpine rescue or something; but that's definitely NOT a mission for which heavy-lift birds are designed.

I will give you credit for dividing 87.5 by 35 and getting 2.5 though. Good job there.

In reply to by Scaliger

CRM114 thatthingcanfly Tue, 05/08/2018 - 19:20 Permalink

I can speak to the Harrier crash.

There are more ways to kill yourself in a single Harrier sortie than most people will experience in a lifetime. Wait for the accident report.

As to military flight safety in general, where I also have experience, there are always 'spates' of accidents. It's due to how the statistics of exceptional events works. However, the corresponding 'spate' of few accidents doesn't get reported.

However, I do agree that Air Forces in general are short of experienced personnel, both technical and aircrew, and they are also not getting enough flying hours or leave. You can't run an Air Force on the cheap.

 

p.s. How is this actually an article? It's just a disjointed ramble with specious comments.

In reply to by thatthingcanfly

Saucy-Jack Buckaroo Banzai Tue, 05/08/2018 - 15:30 Permalink

Q may or may not be disinfo.

However, dismissing him with innuendo is weak and lazy.

Discredit his words and theories with better words and theories and you have something.

He is pretty thorough and much of what he says makes sense. NeonRevolt does a good job of decoding.

Use critical thinking. Think for yourself. Do your own research. But just saying something doesn't smell right is lame.

Give specific examples why Q is disinfo. Until then, praise be to the true patriots trying to undo decades of treason in this great land.

In reply to by Buckaroo Banzai

El Vaquero hedgeless_horseman Tue, 05/08/2018 - 13:33 Permalink

The thing that gets me with all of these high tech weapons platforms, given the push against Russia and even China, is in a real war against these players, they would be useful for clearing a path, so to speak, but they aren't what would win.  A few super-fighters and bombers would be great, but in the end, if you can produce 10 updated F-16s for every F-35, the F-16 is the way to go.

In reply to by hedgeless_horseman

any_mouse Buckaroo Banzai Tue, 05/08/2018 - 15:48 Permalink

And to provide post service employment for the senior officers that helped the project get approval.

What is the point of this article?

Congress needs to diligently pass ever increasing budgets for military spending in the twilight of the petrodollar empire?

Get rid of the FED and the dual citizens in government, then the need for a "ZOG" empire goes away.

Most of these concerns can be traced to a group of East European converts to a Talmudic religion, who think that they are entitled to land in the Levant, and are therefore entitled to do whatever it takes to hold on to that stolen land.

Chutzpah.

In reply to by Buckaroo Banzai

CRM114 El Vaquero Tue, 05/08/2018 - 19:28 Permalink

Much depends on the aircrew training and the technical support that keeps them serviceable. It's not as simple as a 10:1 cost ratio. The Iraqis lost 36:1 in the Gulf War air-air campaign. I've flown against 8 aircraft that cost the same as my one aircraft on an exercise. I got valid shots on 4 of them and came home without any of them even seeing me.

Don't generalize, it's invalid in air combat.

In reply to by El Vaquero

I Am Jack's Ma… JimmyJones Tue, 05/08/2018 - 13:29 Permalink

Ask a Mossad-linked limited hangout that’s reliably anti-Iran and anti-Palestinian?

Sure, I’ll ask Rita Katz about ‘ISIS’ too.

The way it’s written is designed to convey a feeling of ‘knowing’ when you don’t know a thing, and I promise you - is reliably Zionist.

In reply to by JimmyJones

I Am Jack's Ma… bowie28 Tue, 05/08/2018 - 13:33 Permalink

Of course.  What’s he gonna say, the opposite?  

And for the record, I don’t ‘hate’ Israel and certainly not Israelis as such.  Just their government’s hijacking of our foreign policy, and ongoing spying, and efforts to lie us into endless war.

 

one way or another that influence is going to end.

 

What proof is there of cash pallets and say it was cash pallets?

who’s cash was it?

What’s the Swift banking system?

who was denied access to Swift andby what country’s treasury dept

(((who))) completely ran that dept under Obama? Which ethnoreligious group controlled all top 5 T positions?

(((Who))) controls your MSM and many ostensible ‘opposition’ voices like Alex Jones, Cernovich, PJ Watson?

 

Why wouldnt Q mention Swift?

 

 

 

In reply to by bowie28

I Am Jack's Ma… bowie28 Tue, 05/08/2018 - 13:45 Permalink

hey man, I don’t know for sure, but Q fills a certain need for Team Trump all while being reliably anti-Iran, and anti-Palestinian while using Rorschach language.

 

I’m not teling you what to believe, I’m suggesting you should be suspicious whenever someone’s peddling hope but no real solid info.

 

the Iran deal isnt bad, and the smart move for us would be to gradually de-mullah them with more trade.  Blue jeans and  rock music for cheap oil.

Israel fucks that up.

 

Israel is a tiny foreign country that spies on us, steals our shit, takes our money, and lies us into wars while shooting unarmed kids and bulldozing homes with kids and old people in them.

America First means Israel can’t be.

In reply to by bowie28

TheReplacement keep the basta… Wed, 05/09/2018 - 09:24 Permalink

Sorry but I fail to see how a 159 page deal can be all that conclusive when it comes to all of the facets involved.  It is literally about 2,000 pages less than healthcare law and both were done by Oblamer Admin.  Not believable.

Be fair.  Q pointed to NK and look was has been happening there.

Q pointed at Iran with the same stick.  Perhaps the same setup (behind the facade of Great Satan vs Mullahs).

Either way, we can only watch and take notes about events as they happen.  If people can use clues Q gives and find more information and expose links in the cabal's web(s) then so much the better.

In reply to by keep the basta…