Trump Cancels Airstrike Due to Equipment Malfunctions

That’s my take on it. Trump gave the order to attack Iran and some piece of equipment necessary for the mission failed or was not ready for the job.

The US armed forces have a bad track record when it comes to military action against Iran. You can go back to the aborted hostage rescue attempt under the Carter Administration. This cluster f**** of an operation killed a bunch of good men in a mission that was doomed to failure. Carter and company wanted every branch of the military to have a part in the mission which was flown at night. People that had not trained together were thrust into a dangerous operation in an environment hostile to both men and equipment.

Operation Eagle Claw … was a United States Armed Forces operation ordered by U.S. President Jimmy Carter to attempt to end the Iran hostage crisis by rescuing 52 embassy staff held captive at the Embassy of the United States, Tehran on 24 April 1980. Its failure, and the humiliating public debacle that ensued, damaged U.S. prestige worldwide. Carter blamed his loss in the 1980 U.S. presidential election mainly on his failure to secure the release of the hostages

Operation Eagle Claw

Fast forward to today. President Trump has inherited a sketchy military that is highly reliant on untested systems. My use of the word “untested” is a charitable term.

As documented previously on this blog, Navy’s 13 Billion Dollar Cruise Ship, we have aircraft carriers that can’t arm planes, launch them or land them because their systems don’t work. The Navy also has weapon systems that they can’t test fire because it costs too much money to test them ($1 million per shot).

The Navy is scrapping production of rounds for its newest warship, citing costs of nearly $1 million per unit.

The move comes just two weeks after the Navy commissioned the U.S.S. Zumwalt, the next generation of the Navy’s guided missile destroyer program. The scrapped Long Range Land-Attack Projectile (LRLAP) fired from the Zumwalt would be capable of hitting targets up to 80 miles away. Lockheed Martin claims the rounds are so accurate they can “defeat targets in the urban canyons of coastal cities with minimal collateral damage.”

The Zumwalt is equipped with two large guns which are only capable of firing LRLAP rounds. The guns are still slated to be mounted on two upcoming Zumwalt class ships, and are the largest weapons to be designed for a warship since World War 2.

Navy’s Fancy New Gun Can’t Be Fired Because Rounds Are $1 Million Each

Every branch of the military has similar stories of equipment issues.

The U.S. military, government agencies and other purchasers bought more than $20 million worth of Chinese-made counterfeit goods designed to look like domestically produced gear from a company that defrauded the government and helped to orchestrate the counterfeiting process between January 2013 and October 2018, Justice Department officials said last week.

The counterfeit gear included 200 specialized parkas designed to counter night vision goggles that would have been used by U.S. Air Force personnel stationed in Afghanistan.

But the Multicam APECS Parkas sold to an unnamed U.S. Air Force base supply center didn’t actually do that, which could have put troops’ lives at risk.

Those types of parkas use a near-infrared technology woven into the fabric that is designed to make the wearer more difficult for enemy forces to detect with equipment such as night-vision goggles, justice officials said. The counterfeit versions, however, lacked the near-infrared technology, unbeknownst to the wearer.

The sales were in violation of the Berry Amendment and the Trade Agreements Act, which require goods sold to the military and certain government buyers to be manufactured in either the United States or select countries.

DoD bought phony military gear made in China, including counter-night vision clothing that didn’t actually work

In the case of Trump aborting the attack on Iran, I think the likely culprit is the F-35.

The F-35 program began in 1992. The idea was that all branches of the military would use the same aircraft thus saving that taxpayers money. The program was known as the Joint Strike Fighter. However, like the proverbial horse created by a committee, every part of the military had their own ideas about what this aircraft should do and what type of weapon systems it should have. By 2017, the commonality of function between the services was measured at 20 percent.

Further reading: Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II

The F-35 in my opinion is a failure as a replacement for the F-16. It is incapable of winning a dogfight with an F-16, it cannot maintain supersonic speed without compromising its structure, and requires pristine flight conditions to operate.

I think the carrier aircraft were not up to the task of doing the mission due to an equipment readiness issue and Trump remembering the Carter fiasco, aborted the mission. It was not a last minute breakthrough of diplomacy.

That’s my read on it but we will learn soon enough because nothing stays secret in Washington for very long.