Tuesday, October 30, 2007

4 Corners on Australia’s air force procurement

This post seems to have been eaten by the Spaminator at Lavvie Prodders
( Wordpress's text box also does funny things to html).
The problem of Russian weapons systems of being incompatible is being solved. The Sukhoi Su-30
"Su-30MKA Highly specialised version for Algeria is similar to the MKI, but will principally be equipped with French and Russian avionics. It will feature head-up and multifunction displays from the Thales Group and Sagem of France." Other defence forces are also changing the Su-30's avionics.
The Russians also wouldn't be the only possible source of spare parts for the Su-30.
There are a number of issues that the excellent Four Corners brought up and for some of the terms in that program see Fighter Aircraft
1. These fighters have to be considered as an overall part of our defence forces and not just as toys for the boys.( The JSF F-35 Lightning II is likely to be the last " meat in the seat" as far as the U.S. is concerned).
The key example : if in the scenario of the attack on the military communications headquarters on the outskirts of Jakarta we had used the Super Hornets against the Indonesians Su-30s then all of the Super Hornets would have been destroyed. This may be an acceptable cost for the goal achieved if we have sufficient other defence assets. However we have to go through most probable scenario analyses and I find a direct attack on the Indonesians improbable. We might plan however for an outlying territorial dispute with the Indonesians.
2. The decision to buy the JSF appears to have been made very carelessly.
3. The JSF is also a comparatively slow aircraft against the Su-30. The scenario of an interaction between the JSF and Su-30s wasn't explored on the Four Corners program.
4, The decision to buy the interim Super Hornet was hopelessly flawed.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Puck you Mr Howard

It has now become the "fashion" for some passer by to utter some profanity in Mr Howard's direction. This tendency should be discouraged as it does not reflect well upon the office of Prime Minister. If some yoof should utter some rude word directed at the P.M. and post his/her feeble attempt at protest on yoof toobs , then this should not be rewarded by payment of monies into his/ her account. This would be wrong.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Kevin Andrews Racist ?

Kevin Andrews is at the heart of the government's woes. He was responsible for WorkChoices and now problems with the Immigration department. His handling of the supposed Sudanese problem ( see ABC's Media Watch 8/10/07) has been incompetent at best. It is also clear that his brand of Christianity is a peculiar one.
In this interview Andrews says"Rudd has tried to superficially bridge this class cap by wearing his Christian soul on his sleeve. Rudd's repudiation of economic fundamentalism and heightened sense of compassion in public affairs is therefore phoney and misleading". Attempted translation of this gobbledegook :
If you don't believe in economic fundamentalism ( whatever that is) your Christianity is false.
Another logic field day. Anyway Pauline Hanson is behind the good minister and that's all that counts.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

The Beazer's Defence Farces

Lavvie Prodders has this reference to the rambling last spray to parliament by the Beazer. The Beazer had this intriguing offering "The radar of our Hornet could not identify most of the aircraft in this region as hostile—in other words, our front-line fighter could not shoot down people who would be the enemies in this region." By radar I think Beazer means the IFF ( the identify friend or foe system) which is not part of the radar system but a separate transponder. This system which is still far from perfect is probably only of use ( and then limited) in war conditions when the air space isn't as crowded. Its liberal use in peacetime is likely to get civilian aircraft shot down. ( see the Iran Air Flight 655 shoot down tho its abilities will have improved significantly since) This opens up a number of questions about this and other defence purchases ( which Wikipedia can't answer of course)
1. Was U.S. military IFF in development during the time of purchase of the Hornet?
2. What exactly was the reason for the U.S.'s failure to update the Hornet's IFF ?
The U.S. military if it is thinking clearly( contradiction?) would see that allies have compatible if detuned IFFs and perhaps that was what the delay was about : a standards committee setting that detuning.