“Stealth technology demands significant trade-offs in range, security, weapons carriage, sortie generation, and adaptability. Stealth provides no advantage in conflicts such as those in Afghanistan or Iraq (since 2003), and (despite its obvious utility) it cannot guarantee success in future struggles with a near-peer adversary. Most importantly, the cost of F-22s and F-35s threatens to reduce the size of the Air Force’s fielded fighter fleet to dangerously small numbers, particularly in the current fiscal environment. These facts suggest that the Air Force should reconsider its long-standing position that fifth-generation fighters are the only option for recapitalizing its fighter fleet.”
Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Niemi, a test pilot and squadron commander, continues the criticism of the Air Force’s new F-22 fighter jet, which cost $358 million each and are designed to fight enemies from the Cold War. POGO has been a frequent critic of the F-22’s design, cost and oxygen-deprivation problems, and we are glad to see knowledgeable pilots like Niemi coming out against how and why this plane was procured. Read a summary of Niemi’s arguments on Battleland or the full 30-page article.