Strategy Page reports on the concerted effort by the Air Force to get rid of the A-10 Thunderbolt II ground support aircraft.
[The] hostile attitude by air force leadership to the A-10 is nothing new. It got so bad in 2015 that the general commanding the ACC (Air Combat Command) was fired (because of Congressional pressure) for giving a speech in which he declared that any air force personnel speaking out publicly in favor of the A-10 were guilty of treason. While ACC is in charge of most combat aircraft (fighters, bombers, recon and ground attack) ACC leadership has long believed that the A-10 has outlived its usefulness and that its ground support job could be done just as well by fighters like the F-16 and F-35. Experience in combat has shown that this is not true, but apparently to senior people in the air force backing the truth, at least when it comes to the A-10, is treasonous.
While the air force leadership officially denounced the “supporting the A-10 is treason” remarks it was recently revealed that while those apologies were being made those same air force generals were trying to sabotage the A-10 by quietly cutting major maintenance programs 40 percent. This meant that a growing number of A-10s would not be available for service because of “maintenance issues.” It is believed that such excuses would not include the fact that the maintenance problems were self-inflicted by the air force leadership and it would instead be implied that the age of the A-10s was a factor.
The air force has been trying to retire its A-10 aircraft since the 1990s and this time (since late 2014) they tried issuing studies and analyses showing that the A-10 was too specialized and too old to justify the cost of keeping it in service. This generated more opposition, and more effective opposition, than the air forces expected. This was helped by the fact that some of the “studies” were more spin than impartial analysis. All this created unwanted publicity about something the air force denies exists but is nevertheless very real; the air force has never really wanted to devote much resources to CAS (Close Air Support) for ground forces. Officially this is not true but in reality it is and the ground forces (army and marines) and historians provided plenty of evidence.
There's more at the link.
Hmmm . . . From the US Air Force Blue Book on Values:
Integrity first, Service before self, and Excellence in all we do. These are the Air Force Core Values. Study them . . . understand them . . . follow them . . . and encourage others to do the same.
Methinks some Air Force generals need to re-read those values, particularly the first one . . . those generals, that is, who aren't too far gone in lack of values, and who need to be fired pour encourager les autres (as Voltaire would put it).