F-35B in the ME for first time

Discuss the F-35 Lightning II
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SpudmanWP

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 00:27

The Marine Corps’ F-35 combat debut was flown in honor of a fallen hero

In the dead of night in September 2012, a U.S. Marine Corps outpost in Afghanistan awoke to the sound of gunfire and explosions. Taliban fighters had infiltrated Camp Bastion and were destroying high-value AV-8B Harrier Jump Jets sitting on the tarmac. The squadron commander of Marine Attack Squadron 211, deployed to Bastion in support of ground operations in Afghanistan, ran towards the sounds of chaos with only a pistol, organizing Marines to repel the attack before he was fatally wounded.

Six years later, that commander's legacy was honored when a Marine Corps F-35B Lightning II from VFMA-211 carried out the first U.S. F-35 combat strike ever against a fixed Taliban target in Afghanistasn with his name inscribed on the fuselage.


More at the jump
https://www.businessinsider.com/marine- ... ?r=UK&IR=T
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weasel1962

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 00:57

Looks like a combat sortie of more than 300nm combat radius.
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squirrelshoes

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 01:39

Yep, AV-8B isn't flying a combat mission from amphib to Afghanistan without coordinating a refuel via USAF or assets from larger carrier.

F-35B puts a significant southern part of the country within sortie distance.
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spazsinbad

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 08:19

BrakeDaFence - I luv 'em dearly but I don't think they should write about aviation - sometimes one just has to ROFL a lot.
F-35’s First Combat Strike Won’t End Debate
27 Sep 2018 Sydney J. Freedberg Jr.

"...the F-35B used today appears to have had some kind of pod or extra fuel tank hanging from its belly, breaking its clean radar-deflecting lines and compromising stealth...."

Graphic: https://breakingdefense.com/wp-content/ ... 0aed22.png

Source: https://breakingdefense.com/2018/09/f-3 ... nd-debate/
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marsavian

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 09:38

The Israelis are using them against SAM protected sites as intended so they are just wrongly repeating the same decades old tripe even linking to Sprey. Who cares what these idiots think, the proof is in the pudding of new overwhelming air superiority being established far and wide with its introduction.

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weasel1962

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 09:57

Syria and Afghanistan aren't exactly the kinds of test that would confirm "air superiority". There are other earlier gen aircraft operating in those theaters in the same effect. imho, the current F-35 use is merely exactly what the original design was intended to do. Deliver munitions on designated targets.

What may differentiate this mission is that its from an LHD in the Indian Ocean. The question is whether AV-8s used to do this? I always thought AV-8s would have to be deployed to land base due to range constraints.
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sferrin

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 11:43

weasel1962 wrote:Syria and Afghanistan aren't exactly the kinds of test that would confirm "air superiority".


Syria has Su-35s and S-400s. They might be operated by Russians but they're there.
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hythelday

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 12:00

sferrin wrote:
weasel1962 wrote:Syria and Afghanistan aren't exactly the kinds of test that would confirm "air superiority".


Syria has Su-35s and S-400s. They might be operated by Russians but they're there.


Russian SAMs and aircraft in Syria aren't actively opposing coalition aircraft there, let alone Afghanistan - the only real challenge is sticking to EMCON plan so as not give away too much. I believe weasel meant that only after F-35s conduct OCA/DEAD against at least some sort of credible ADS we can throw around words like "test" and "combat proven".
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sferrin

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 13:14

hythelday wrote:
sferrin wrote:
weasel1962 wrote:Syria and Afghanistan aren't exactly the kinds of test that would confirm "air superiority".


Syria has Su-35s and S-400s. They might be operated by Russians but they're there.


Russian SAMs and aircraft in Syria aren't actively opposing coalition aircraft there, let alone Afghanistan - the only real challenge is sticking to EMCON plan so as not give away too much. I believe weasel meant that only after F-35s conduct OCA/DEAD against at least some sort of credible ADS we can throw around words like "test" and "combat proven".


Dassault trotted out "combat proven" the first time a Rafale dropped a bomb on a camel in Afghanistan.
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marsavian

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 13:17

The Syrians have S-200 and soon S-300. It's a non permissive environment.
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hythelday

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 13:41

sferrin wrote:
Dassault trotted out "combat proven" the first time a Rafale dropped a bomb on a camel in Afghanistan.


And everyone on this forum made fun of them, much like Gripen's recce flights over Lybia.

marsavian wrote:The Syrians have S-200 and soon S-300. It's a non permissive environment.


Syrians aren't shooting at American jets either (also see weasel's original post about 4th gens doing the same). Israelis probably flew over Syria already, maybe even expended some ordnance, but they aren't keen on telling about it.

I am not trying to incite a argument or detract anything from Marines who made this all happen, but I prefer to be "technically correct" in details. So far US F-35 did not fly a high-end mission that it was designed to outperform 4th gens in. Yet.
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sferrin

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 13:46

hythelday wrote:
sferrin wrote:
Dassault trotted out "combat proven" the first time a Rafale dropped a bomb on a camel in Afghanistan.


And everyone on this forum made fun of them, much like Gripen's recce flights over Lybia.


Myself included. IMO it's more PR than anything. That said, the S-400s and Su-35s in Syria can't be ignored.
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ricnunes

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 14:18

hythelday wrote:
sferrin wrote:
Dassault trotted out "combat proven" the first time a Rafale dropped a bomb on a camel in Afghanistan.


And everyone on this forum made fun of them, much like Gripen's recce flights over Lybia.


Believe me that "everyone on this forum" are the "vast minority" regarding the (civilian) people discussing these matters over the web (and not only).

This being said, here I agree with sferrin's posts namely that's a bit of a "ridiculous double standards" that when a Rafale bombed "a camel" for the first time in Afghanistan and when it attacked conventional targets over Libya over a friendly/permissive territory (remember Benghazi was the bastion and occupied by Anti-Gaddafi forces at that time) "everyone" on the vast majority of other sites/forums claimed to the four winds that the Rafale was fully proven in combat while at the same time the F-35B performed a raid/attack in Afghanistan from a LHD stationed on the Indian Sea (something that apparently the AV-8B isn't capable of) and Israeli forces used their F-35A against a force (Syrians) much, much better equipped than the Libyans but at the same time this "doesn't prove" that the F-35 is combat proven.
Again double standards IMO...
A 4th/4.5th gen fighter aircraft stands about as much chance against a F-35 as a guns-only Sabre has against a Viper.
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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 14:44

I’m a little slow on the uptake this morning. Who, specifically, in the USG is claiming F-35 now “combat proven.”

The only remarks I’ve seen from the USG are that the jet was used on a combat strike in support of ground activity in Afghanistan.
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steve2267

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Unread post28 Sep 2018, 16:10

[quote="hythelday"
I am not trying to incite a argument or detract anything from Marines who made this all happen, but I prefer to be "technically correct" in details. So far US F-35 did not fly a high-end mission that it was designed to outperform 4th gens in. Yet.[/quote]

Red Flag 17-1, and other flags?

Being "technically correct", these exercises were NOT combat. On the other hand, all the quotes I have ever read from combat pilots who had flown in a Red Flag and also actual combat has, to a man, stated that the "combat was easier than Red Flag."
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, dollop of F-117, gob of F-22, dash of F/A-18, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well + bake. Whaddya get? F-35.
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