I call BS on General Dempsey’s statement. He is a political lackey.
Via Stars & Stripes
The time-tested A-10 “Warthog” — the aircraft that comprises the bulk of Davis-Monthan Air Force Base’s operations — was both doted on and deemed ready for discharge Wednesday in the first Senate hearing on a military budget plan that seeks to retire the aging plane.
Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey called the A-10 the “ugliest, most beautiful aircraft on the planet” during the hearing, but defended losing it among budget cuts announced last week by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel.
“I’m probably one of the few people in the room that’s actually had an A-10 come to my rescue, so you don’t have to convince me that it’s been an extraordinarily valuable tool on the battlefield,” he said. But he said that this year will be unlike previous years, when A-10 supporters were able to avoid proposed cuts.
“What’s different now is, we had some slack in our budget over the last 10 years. There’s no more slack in it. The margins are just really very tight,” he said.
As national leaders weigh the fate of the Warthog, local elected officials and advocates for the base are touting the aircraft’s strengths, and warning of the economic fall-out for Tucson if the jet is retired.