The utter incompetence of certain people in the USAF
is amazing. The entire competition seems to have been run like a dog and pony show. It seems that the Air Force bent over backward and through their legs for NG
/EADS on this one. If you remember, they actually re-drew the RFP so that NG
/EADS wouldn't pull their product entirely out of the competition!
If you think that people on this forum were confused as to how the A330 won, then you haven't read anything! You should have seen certain AF
pilot forums. Guys were just about ready to fall out of their chairs in disbelief. They knew that something fishy was going on but not to the extremes that the brass were doing. This isn't to say that the A330 tanker isn't a fine aircraft. It is just the fact that what the AF
asked for and what they purchased were almost two seperate things.
Let's hope that the 3rd time around is a charm for the USAF
and a new tanker. I really have no idea what Boeing should offer or what NG
should do. Both of their designs go about doing the same job in different manners. One has more gas, the other has a smaller foot print and the list goes on and on. An issue that has not been brought up, is the fact that the 717 design does more than serve as tankers. Their ability to fulfill many different missions has to be of importance to the AF
. Can both the 767 and A330 fit the recon/radar/universal test platform mold?
Either way, I still love seeing those KC
-135s out on the flight line in the desert. It is a testament to their design that over 40+ years after they rolled off the line, many of them are still flying, fighting and winning the battles that we throw them into. While we sit around and wait for this new tanker fiasco to be fixed, it might be worth our while to re-engine a few more KC
-135Es. Heck, while why don't we just have Boeing restart KC
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"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower