Skip to comments.One of the options for Poland is to buy F- 35
Posted on 03/06/2014 10:38:07 AM PST by lizol
Polish Defence Ministry decided recently to continue a service of 32 Su-22M4/UM3K attack aircrafts used by the 21st Tactical Air Base in Swidwin. The variant of a service longer than 3 or 10 years (until to 2025 years) is considered. This is related with the technical modernization of the Polish Air Force. The reason was a current in the fall of 2013 plan for the withdrawal of all Su-22 until 2015.
Not so long ago, in the Technical Modernisation Plan for the years 2013-2022 there was a record for the modernization of airport in Świdwin and the purchase of 16 F-16 combat aircrafts (a variant similar to the Block 52 + or more modern). The first machines were to reach Poland in 2018. On the 6th of February 2014, the Minister of Defence Tomasz Siemoniak signed the changes to the Technical Modernisation Plan. The new solutions replaced the purchase of these 16 F-16 aircrafts. A longer service of Su-22 will allow to purchase the successors for these machines. The successor will be a manned aircraft, or an armed UAV (UCAV), if the combat capabilities of UCAV will be higher than today. In the optimistic plan, the military assumes the purchase of 64 combat aircrafts of the 5th generation (4 squadrons) to the year 2030. The first funding of the program will start in 2020 (41 million euro). In the period between 2021-2022 there is a plan of 164 million euro expense. This should allow for the purchase of four new machines, probably the F -35 Lightning II. The principal payments will be after the year 2022 and the deliveries will be an average of 6-8 aircrafts per year. Other variations that the military is working on is a purchase of the 4th generation aircrafts (such as the modernized F -16) or even the UCAV.
The military services believie that an extension of a service of Su- 22 aircrafts for the next 10 years should be taken into consideration. The cost of the extension and modernisation (communication devices) of a single Su-22 aircraft will cost 1,5 million euro. All should have adequate repairs within three years. There is a suggestion that all the 32 aircrafts (2 squadrons) should be reapired. That will enable a smooth transition of a personnel from Su-22 to a new manned aircrafts or UCAV.
In the optimistic scenario, about the year 2030 Polish combat aircraft will be equipped with 3 squadrons of F-16 (48 aircrafts) and 4 squadrons of F -35 (64 aircrafts). Today Polish combat aviation is equipped with 7 squadrons and 112 combat aircrafts. In the future the numbers of squadrons and aircrafts will be saved.
The F-35 is slower, less maneuverable, more lightly armed and has a shorter range that the F-16. Its only plus is stealth. But stealth is a function of the enemy’s computing power and radar networking. Since computing and networking are going up exponentially we may find that the F-35 has a much shorter useful combat life than the F-16. True, they’ll see the F-16 coming, but then the usefulness of all combat systems is in the strategy with which they’re used. A World War 1 steam powered destroyer might still contribute to a battle if it was used within its limits and for purposes where it can do the job. Similarly, there may still be a place for propeller driven air support. But planners and politicians always try to get the most sophisticated, sexist, expensive thing they can.
We are getting rid of ours so we can sell them cheap. What they need most is a second amendment and distribute rifles to each citizen.
Sure, Poland can buy the F-35. They could only afford one.
F 16s are a cheap alternative to other planes like the Eurofighter or the F 35. Bang for the buck. The danger for poland is growing as the Russians show in the Ukraine.
There remain many things to do in Poland regarding security. BUT - The biggest problem stays the Polish (European) dependence on Russian energy and not millitary questions. First of all Tusk should convince Merkel to let remain the German nuclear power plants working (because of some imbecile green dreamwork it is planned to shut all of them down in 2022). Furthermore the EU needs a energy plan and reliable structures to get independent in case of a Russian energy embargo during Winter. This only can work, if the countries in central and west Europe work closely together. There is more than enough coal and gas in France, Poland and Germany if modern technology to tap new energy resources is used.