I agree, its lunacy to close down C-17 production. Current budget constraints are of course an issue but that is an immediate problem, hopefully to be cleared up in the next few years. With the total draw down of US involvement in Afghanistan at least that wont be bleeding the Pentagon dry for much longer. Looking at the development time for a new military aircraft being in the neighborhood of a decade or more AND
the recent massive cost overruns and the embarrassment of the F-22 and JSF-35 programs, you would think that keeping a very capable, modern heavy lift aircraft available to not only the US but to the world would be a no brainer. Look at how long the Airbus A400M has taken to develop, its been another debacle in itself! I also have this thought, with LGB
shut down in the future and Boeing's other production space stretched to the absolute limit with huge orders for 737MAX, next gen 777 and 787 models, where on earth would a C-17 replacement be built?
Just think, the C-17s are all delivered and the line is shut....then 5 years down the road the Pentagon realizes that it needs more of them and here we go on a decade long development program for a new heavy lifter, should be able to have a C-17 replacement in the sky in about 20 years, just ridiculous.