“Our aviation readiness is really my No. 1 concern,” he said. “We don’t have enough airplanes that we would call ‘ready basic aircraft.’ That means we’re not getting enough flight hours.”Then this.
The readiness issues that Marine Corps aviation units have been caused by a variety of factors, so there is no single solution, Neller told reporters after Tuesday’s briefing.
“We’ve been an operating at a high rate,” Neller said. “Sequestration affected the work force at some of the fleet readiness centers. There are some parts issues with new airplanes. We’re in the middle of fielding brand new model type series for every plane right now except for CH-53s. We left our airplanes overseas — particularly our rotary wing — probably longer than we should have, looking back it.”
Neller also stressed that the Marine Corps needs to get new aircraft, such as the MV-22B Osprey and F-35B.When the Marine Corps decided to totally ignore conventional combat and to turn into a Seagoing 101st optimized to fight terrorism/support SOCOM, the problems started.
“We’re — I think — 281 of 360 on Ospreys and we’re still at the beginning of the F-35 that is going to replace three airframes,” he said. “We’re in pretty good shape on the Hueys and we’re a little bit slower on the Cobras.”
Did no one crunch the numbers on this new aviation centric Marine Corps? Did no one do an analysis of pushing out SPMAGTF-CR's and what it would do not only to dwell time for our Marines but also to maintenance requirements?
I KEEP SAYING IT BUT NO ONE IS LISTENING! WE NEED A PAUSE TO GET OUR DOCTRINE/CONCEPT HOUSE IN ORDER! The sands have shifted and its obvious to all (except for HQMC) that the premise on which we're building the Corps (started during the Amos era to promote the fiction that we did not have forces available to respond to the Libyan incident) to fight terrorism as it existed in 2006 timeframe and that this fight would last for the next 50 years is no longer valid.
We're wearing out Marines and airframes on flights of fancy to fulfill a forward presence mindset that is not based on reality, common sense or need. Instead we have Combatant Commanders that are demanding forces so that they have play toys to move around the globe. Ops Tempo hasn't increased because the world is a more dangerous place...its increased to satisfy the desire of CC's to play God!
Additionally we need a Commandant that has a bird's eye view of the Marine Corps and will act in its best interests...not two Deputy Commandant's for Aviation that's pushing agendas.