Some idle musings about planes the Baltic states might need.

The thought occurred to me, when I was discussing the HX topic in mr Varabungase’s site. Some gentlepersons felt that a strike aircraft would be a better fit for B3 states rather than say JAS-39 Gripen. This started me thinking: The plane would be type of A-4 skyhawk or A-7 Corsair II. Both carrier capable, and thus could easily cope with austere highway runways and maintenance. A-4 later variants could carry 4500kg in 5 pylons, and A-7 with 8 pylons (two for sidewinders) and 6800 kg’s worth of ordnance. So with Corsair II you could even get 300 kgs more of ordnance airborne per sortie compared to JAS-39 E.

A-7 corsairs might be had for dimes from Greece, where they were still flying 2014. some modernization, and you would have really cheap strike force with some self defense capability. This would bring the possibility of using all or practically all NATO ordnance, and get the B3 into the fight if need be. Just the top cover would have to be provided by some other, say F-15 C fighters. A-4 Skyhawks were flying in Israel just a few years back. They might be even cheaper, but they do not have provisions for AA missiles, so the need for top cover would be even greater.

Obviously the A-7 Corsairs would not be new, but you could still build a viable strike force. BUT neither of the named strikers here could in any conceivable way provide any kind of CAP for the armed forces on the ground, which, in my humble opinion, would be a selling point for brand new JAS-39 E/F/Gs for the Baltic states. Obviously there MIGHT be second hand F-18 Cs to be had for a bargain price from your friendly neighbor from the north, Flight hours pending of course. I do suspect that they might still have a few hundred hours left, and might handily be re-conditioned. This would bring B3 more Air to Air capability, but again would not be a world beater in 2025.

So HX-program is, in anyway you might think, and viable way for Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia to get into the fighter game.

But this is, of course, just my 0,05€ worth.

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About epamuodikkaitaajatuksia

Reilu nelikymppinen jannu, joka on huolissaan siitä miten maanpuolustus ja turvallisuus makaa Lapissa, Suomessa ja Euroopassa. Harrastuksina Amerikkalainen jalkapallo, ja SRA ammunta. A guy about 45, who has a "thang" for military current issues, defense and shooting. Not to forget American football.
This entry was posted in Baltic situation, Epäselvää ajatustenlentoa, HX-ohjelma, War in Baltic Region and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Some idle musings about planes the Baltic states might need.

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