The unveiling of Britain’s future combat aircraft concept last week was driven by industrial policy as much as it was by advanced technology. Which is just as well. The industrial statements were made, implicitly. To France and Germany: the UK can do this without you. To Japan, Sweden and other nations: the UK would welcome … Continue reading TEMPEST – HURRY UP AND WAIT
Britain's fixed-price entry into the System Design and Development (SDD) for $2 billion bought significant influence and knowledge, without exposing the country to the huge increase in the cost of SDD. That good deal did not automatically entitle British companies to a defined workshare on the F-35. They earned their place by providing “best value” bids. … Continue reading F-35s FOR THE UK; SOME THINGS TO THINK ABOUT
Compare and contrast. Amnesty International said last month that the US-led coalition killed hundreds of civilians in re-taking Raqqa from Islamic State (IS), many of them in airstrikes. Air commanders in Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR) say they took the greatest care to avoid any such outcome. The UK Ministry of Defence still says that British … Continue reading URBAN CLOSE AIR SUPPORT – AN IMPOSSIBLE MISSION?
After 30 years of covering the aerospace/defense business for Aviation International News (AIN), I will be leaving on good terms in mid-2018, to focus on my other interests: I am best-known as the unofficial historian of the U-2 spyplane. I want to revise the book that I self-published in 2015, on the recent and current … Continue reading IT’S TIME TO RE-FOCUS!