Defense News reported on April 2 that a U.S. Air Force general in charge of the bomber criticized the Army’s new plan to establish a long-range missile base in the Pacific Ocean, calling the idea expensive, repetitive and “stupid”.
“Why accept an extremely expensive idea when we (the Department of Defense) don’t have the money to do this?” General Timothy Ray, head of the U.S. Air Force Global Strike Command, said in the Mitchell Institute’s March 31 audio-recorded Aerospace Advantage podcast.
“A few congressmen asked me about this. To be honest, I think this is stupid. I think it is a stupid idea to invest in and reinvent something that the U.S. military has mastered and is advancing. Why on earth did you do this? I try to make sure that my language is not excessive, but [the army] should stop.
Long-range precision strike firepower is currently listed as the top priority of the army’s modernization, and the service plans to deploy a ground-launched hypersonic missile system by 2023.
In March this year, the U.S. Army released a new strategy document outlining its plan to play its role as an “inside force” and deploy a number of troops and land-based missiles to destroy China’s defense system in the Pacific region.
Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville said at an event at the Brookings Institution on March 25 that developmental counterattack capabilities and hypersonic weapons are “extremely important” for the Army to suppress ships, anti-aircraft systems and defeat anti-entry/area denial capabilities, which may suppress U.S. aircraft. troops. Dynamic.
The U.S. Air Force Global Strike Command is in charge of bombers.
He said: “Look at what some of our competitors have done with anti-entry/area denial capabilities. They have built very complex anti-aircraft and missile defense systems. They have built very complex anti-ship capabilities. They are generally trying to expand their defense areas. The U.S. military should have a variety of options to fight this situation.
The Army’s position angered some air power advocates, who believed that air bombers were more effective options to penetrate enemy airspace and destroy missile defense systems. However, although Air Force leaders are worried about how the army’s plan will squeeze the defense budget owned by the Air Force, they are basically silent.
In the podcast, Ray believes that the Army has not yet proved that it can enable allies and partners in the western Pacific to sign agreements to deploy the weapon system that the army wants to develop.
“There must be a lot of countries agreeing to make the Army’s ideas work. Such allies may be found in the European theater, and in the Central Asian theater. But I don’t think the Army will soon make any promises in the Pacific region.”
Meanwhile, the Air Force regularly performs bomber task forces globally, allowing for long-range strike forces in theaters to prepare for a quick response to the crisis, Ray said. By 2022, U.S. bombers will be equipped with their first air-launched hypersonic missile.
He said: “The United States has a bird in hand, a proven ability, a team that can master it, understand how we can act quickly around the world, and know how to integrate the chain of killing. Why try to recreate this capability unless there is a narrow sectoral interest?
Whether Ray’s remarks are the first blow of the larger conflict between the army and the air force, or just his own opinion, remains to be seen.
Admiral John Hayten, vice chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff and Air Force General, has said that the concept of joint operations requires all services to be able to carry out long-range strike missions.
The U.S. Army actively promotes the development of hypersonic missiles.
According to Aviation Weekly, Haiteng said in August: “All tactics are based on the front. But in the future, there will be no concept of front, which means that the army can have its own platform, self-defense or the ability to penetrate into enemy battle areas. The Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps should all have such capabilities.”
In a joint appearance with McConville earlier this week, Air Force Chief of Staff Brown pointed out that although “there are different views on how we look at the battlefield or strategic environment”, the various services must work together.
After Ray’s podcast was released, an Air Force official said Brown and McConville talked about Ray’s remarks on April 2.
“They believe that the Air Force and Army need to continue to work together on defense and look forward to further progress in this regard,” the source said.
Brown also made his own statement.
“Each service is responsible for organizing, training and equipping the unit to harness unique capabilities to meet national security requirements and support our joint teams. I would like to emphasize that in addition to our other four core missions – Air Dominance, Rapid Global Mobility, ISR and Command Control – the U.S. Air Force provides the world’s most powerful all-weather long-range global strike capability. The Air Force will continue to serve with other services and arms to provide the military capabilities required by the United States.”