A group of us old farts have been chatting back and forth on email about this for a couple of days…Since we’re not ‘current’ on things, lot of this is speculation, but we have all been there, launched our asses before.
Sent: Sunday, October 28, 2012 X:XX AM
Subject: Re- Contingencies and Response
Snake, your points are valid, but remember they don’t have the same capability in theater we did. Only 1-2 birds in Sig. And we’ve all stood watch in similar circumstances. 5th and 6th Flt, and both carriers would have been pulling binders as soon as the flash came in.
Tripoli DID launch a bird, they got in no problems other than transport from the airport.
Real question is who was watching the feeds, where they got dumped, and who was sitting in the Pentagon battle cab.
It’s 430 nm g/t from Sig to Benghazi, so 1+30 transit at 330kts, if they pushed it up, less. Same roughly for the Spectre.
Spectre goes with RRF, figure 1+30 to round up everybody, arm up. They get onsta 3+00 in.
So figure 2 hour alert, load two SLAMS another hour. Now we’re at 3 hours. Transit and they’re onsta 4+30 in.
It’s 1800nm from 5th Flt to Benghazi, so tanker avail would be the issue, but if they limited load to two LGBs or JSOW and external drops, they could have been there in 3 hours. That’s 8 18’s with two all up rounds, and second flight could have diverted to Sig to refuel while the first flight went direct.
SLAM/JSOW could have fired on either GPS or Laser, LGBs would have had to have Laser. And that was available until compound fell.
And we all know that would have been at min State call, and probably OO call. Question is what was Defense/CJCS doing? Panetta was lying about the fog of war bullshit, and Dempsey has drunk the koolaid based on his earlier positions. question is who actually told them to stand down and where/how was that communicated. Somebody somewhere has that info, maybe on the high side, but it has to be there. No watch officer I ever served with would have stopped preps/alert without specific record traffic to do so.
Based on what we’ve been going back and forth on, I think the bottom line is they didn’t put assets in because of the perception in ME/muslim that it would have been an INVASION of Libya
I have to agree with the last line at this point. I’m pretty much convinced the reason no response was allowed was the administration (DOS and President) didn’t want to ‘appear’ to be invading Libya… I think this is a pretty sad excuse, since almost 100 TLAMS were fired during the uprising to ‘support’ the uprising.
There is NO question in our minds a military response was possible, and could have gotten there in time. And Peter does a great job of dispelling the ‘conspiracy’ theory HERE about Gen Ham and the CSG RADM relief. That is just flat ‘noise’, and an attempt to pawn the blame off on the military.
I truly hate to think that a political decision over-rode saving American lives, but at this point I don’t know what else to think.
Comments??? Are we full of it???