Thursday, December 17, 2015
An open letter to the Assistant Deputy Commandant for Aviation.
You don't know me and that's to be expected, but I know you or rather, I know your positions. I've followed your statements on the F-35 with great interest. Unfortunately we've parted ways. You along with the former Commandant (in my opinion) sold the soul of the Marine Corps for one airplane. I've watched with horror as Marines with combat experience are denied re-enlistment, extremely capable leaders are forced out and we've cased the colors on Infantry, Armor, Artillery and Engineer battalions.
I've gone from being horrified to angry. This isn't the way that the Marine Corps operates.
You say it's all worth it. You say that the F-35 will bring capabilities that we can barely imagine. You've gone so far as to say that the Ground Combat Element should be left on the beach and LHA/LHDs sail with only F-35s to serve as mini-aircraft carriers. In short I get the impression that you're ready to jettison the Ground Combat Component and make the Wing a free agent in our defense establishment.
I hope I'm wrong but its past time for a bit of clarity. We need to know the how's, the why's and the what for's when it comes to the F-35. We need to know that the sacrifice of our ground combat power is worth it.
We need you to man up and talk to us! MY e-mail is on the right, and the ACV program office has my telephone number. I can't wait to hear from you.