Pentagon Struggles To Keep Ships Sailing, Planes Flying As Budget Cuts Loom
The U.S. military faces a readiness crisis.
A recent Congressional hearing generated headlines about the Navy’s surface fleet falling into disrepair. But that was news four years ago. Across all the services, long-standing readiness problems are worsening; breakdowns are happening more frequently.
Several years ago, an Air Force F-15C literally broke in half during flight. Since then, two F-18s have caught fire aboard ships. Today, every single cruiser hull has cracks; A-10C Warthogs have fuselage cracks, and the UH-1N Twin Huey helicopter fleet is regularly grounded. Over half the Navy’s deployed aircraft are not ready for combat. This is just a sample of the readiness problems plaguing those who serve in uniform. U.S. forces and their military commanders are putting on a brave face. But it’s beyond irresponsible for Congress and the Obama administration to not provide the resources needed to address the problems immediately.