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"The Inside Story On How The U.K. Airforce Eliminated Their" Topic


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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP In the TMP Dawghouse03 Aug 2020 1:05 p.m. PST

…Entire Harrier Fleet In Two Months.

"Retired Air-Vice Marshal Gary Waterfall was one of the Royal Air Force's most senior and experienced Harrier pilots when he was selected to become the figurehead of the United Kingdom's Joint Force Harrier from September 2009. It was the start of a historic and deeply emotional rollercoaster journey that ultimately culminated in him having to personally oversee a highly controversial decision to completely shut down British Harrier operations over a short, two month period.

"I took charge of Joint Force Harrier as it came out of five years dedicated to operations in Afghanistan, with the view of getting it reconstituted, regenerated, and ready for small focused interventions from land or sea," Waterfall told the War Zone…"
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Amicalement
Armand

skipper John Supporting Member of TMP03 Aug 2020 1:14 p.m. PST

Where did they all go?

"72 Harriers were sold to the U.S. Marine Corps…" But where are the rest?

Thresher01 Supporting Member of TMP03 Aug 2020 1:56 p.m. PST

Don't know, but I'll be they'll wish they had them if Falklands II occurs, since the sabre rattling has begun again down south.

David Hangerson03 Aug 2020 9:24 p.m. PST

I am not sure, but I am pretty certain that Argentina has an even more mothballed fleet, airforce and army than England….

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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP In the TMP Dawghouse03 Aug 2020 10:43 p.m. PST

Be sure my friend… be sure… (smile)

By the way…all those missing Harriers were purchased by triangulation from us and they are hidden in a secret base in the Patagonia … (smile)

Amicalement
Armand

Thresher01 Supporting Member of TMP04 Aug 2020 7:07 a.m. PST

Yep, but they're a lot closer to the islands too.

newarch04 Aug 2020 9:57 a.m. PST

Even closer than the British garrison of the Falklands?

Back on topic, yes it was sad when the Harrier went, it was one of those really iconic British military aircraft like the Lancaster and the Spitfire, but presumably they didn't see a use for the type in future conflicts.

I suppose it gets to the point when you can't keep upgrading something indefinitely or the cost of doing so becomes prohibitive. I expect the airframes had become pretty clapped out too.

David Hangerson05 Aug 2020 6:56 p.m. PST

There is an excellent video about WHY the Brits never did a follow on to the Harrier here: YouTube link

Short version: the U.S. swiped technology from Russia to make the F-35, which was going to be a much better plane, so the .brits decided to go with that.

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