An interview with War is Boring’s David Axe
What is ‘War is Boring’?War Is Boring is a collective of journalists writing about war. I launched War Is Boring as a WordPress blog in 2007. In 2013 we moved to a new platform — Medium.com.
WiB seems to have a critical, and independent, voice on military aviation subjects- how do you maintain this seeming impartiality?
We do not serve advertisers in the defense industry, and we also have imaginations and integrity. We know who we work for — our readers, not the government. Not the arms industry.
F-35: what should happen?
Should: cancel it. The Air Force should reopen the F-22 line and rebuild A-10s, F-15s and F-16s while doubling down on long-range drones. The Marines should buy F/A-18E/Fs and replace Harriers with helicopters. The Navy should buy more F/A-18s until it can develop a new fighter. Foreign customers should switch to other, less costly planes.
What do you see as the most important trends in military aviation technology at the moment?
Drones, drones, drones and drones.
Which airframe or systems are most over-rated, and which are the most under-rated?
Overrated — the V-22. Too complex, can’t lift enough. Underrated — the A-10. Flexible, survivable and very cost-effective.
What are the most common misconceptions about aerial warfare?
The most common misconception about aerial warfare is that “stealth” is actually one thing and that it always works. Stealth is actually a range of technologies, design principles and operational methods that have serious limitations and can be countered cheaply by an imaginative enemy.
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How do you feel about the status of USAF A-10s?
Congress is doing the right thing in keeping them. The Air Force should be ashamed of itself for the lies, excuses and propaganda it’s promulgated in trying to retire the plane.
Which of your articles has generated the most audience feedback?
By far our coverage of the F-35 is our most popular. See here:
“The Air Force should reopen the F-22 line and rebuild A-10s, F-15s and F-16s while doubling down on long-range drones.”
Great – re-opening the F-22 line should have happened years ago, but the rest of this strategy is balderdash! The USAF would relying on outdated types that no longer cut it in near-peer warfare (and that would be embarrassed by modern Flanker variants, let alone by Typhoons, Rafales, Gripens, etc.) and on untried and untested long range UCAVs whose utility and effectiveness is entirely unproved.
Haha David Axe fails to consider international F-35 participation and what would happen if it was cancelled. Many of his ‘criticisms’ are sound bites rather that factual criticisms of the F-35.