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August 17, 2006

H&I* Fires 17 Aug 2006

Open post for those with something to share, updated through the day. New, complete posts come in below this one. Note: If trackbacking, please acknowledge this post in your post. That's only polite. You're advertising here, we should get an ad at your place...


This will send a chill down the spine of scarf-wearers everywhere...

WARPLANES: The Pilotless F-35 Project August 17, 2006: In an attempt to gain an edge in the coming unmanned combat aircraft market, a pilotless F-35 has been designed. Manufacturer Lockheed-Martin is currently devoting about a third of research and development money to unmanned vehicles, and the pilotless F-35 is a small part of it. This F-35 project has been underway for about two years now, and is a private effort, not part of any government contract. While the F-35U (for UAV) would weigh less (no cockpit or life-support equipment) and carry lower tech sensors (instead of the expensive AESA radar), it is expected to cost the same as a manned version. In other words, about $40 million. But the lower weight would enable it to carry more weapons (perhaps up to ten tons).

Creating the F-35U is made easier by the fact that all the controls are already electronic, and contain a lot of automatic (robotic) flight control software. Engineers probably noted how close, in design and purpose, the innards of an F-35 were to the various combat UAV designs going around. A robotic F-35 is envisioned as an unmanned bomb carrier, although there is nothing to prevent the F-35U from being able to fight other aircraft. For this, it would either need the high-performance AESA radar, or be able to use radar data from a piloted F-35 (or other aircraft.) This sort of "networked" air battle is already a hot topic in the U.S. Navy and Air Force. It would also be pretty easy to create an F-22U. Both the F-35U and F-22U would have a major advantage over manned fighters, in that a robotic aircraft could perform rapid maneuvers that the human body could not tolerate.

H/t, Strategy Page.

Now this is simply hilarious! The funniest thing I've seen in a while... The Purpose of the Internet - Girl vs Boy View - over at Cotillionite Stacy's place. H/t, SWWBO. -the Armorer


Leave no man behind. Hoo-ah, Sarn't Major! -the Armorer



NICOLE Kidman has made a public stand against terrorism.

The actress, joined by 84 other high-profile Hollywood stars, directors, studio bosses and media moguls, has taken out a powerfully-worded full page advertisement in today's Los Angeles Times newspaper.

Read the list of names here. -the Armorer


More from the "Heh" file...

Mishaps commonly occur as officers chase suspects or clean their guns. However, over the years, some accidental gunshots have been highly unusual.

One off-duty officer shot himself in a leg as he sat behind his desk and, according to department records, contemplated "a complex mathematical problem." Another officer inadvertently pulled the trigger when his African gray parrot flew into his face.

One officer accidentally shot his girlfriend in a leg while trying to retrieve a cartridge from his handgun as a "memento" of their date. Yet another officer admitted that he accidentally fired his gun because he was startled by a woman holding a teddy bear. Two officers accidentally discharged their weapons as they handled them at home while watching themselves in mirrors.

Shakes head. Damn teddy bears. I always knew they were dangerous. You ever notice how they just stare at you? Read the rest here. -the Armorer


Now – Now, That wuz a great B-Day Bash. I gots me myself some loot! Boy-o-boy Those were soooome loh-ockee Dolphins; they are sure to make the Moat Beastie GoneWild. And oooo, love that filter tip on The Cigarette; talk about a racy crew. On the next Castle Party, any back-blasted denizen that goes down to the drink, will be glad to be rescued by The Cigarette and her winsome crew. Hencefourth, The Moat Fleet is performing SAR Missions GoneWild.

And thanks Trias and Neff. The Castle can now have its very own 1st Annual Rubber Duckie Moat Shootout. Ah, to blast away them rubber beasties on the Coastie Patrol Craft. I can just hear myself sing: Rubber duckie, you’re the one, Ba-BANG-BANG… Quack-quack!

And speaking of Ducks, that Gruman Duck, will make for a great shuttle between Lake Powell and The Moat. I know of a great Lick’r Store up in Bullfrog…. And yes Neff, you can drive her on beer runs. Just don’t take André. I have yet to Scotchguard the seats.

Oh Cricket, your timing as always, impeccable. I can just smell them sweetness of your scallops wafting from your kitchen. I’m hungry, and all I’ve got for lunch is reheated chicken. And did you know that The Battle of Santiago, is somewhat personal to my family? My great-granddaddy (my father’s mother’s father) was destined to slogg it at San Juan Hill. If it weren’t for his creative horse trading, I wouldn’t have been born. I did send Massa John a write-up detailing the whole affair a while back.

Thank’s y’all - BOQ


*A term of art from the artillery. Harassment and Interdiction Fires.

Back in the day, when you could just kill people and break things without a note from a lawyer, they were pre-planned, but to the enemy, random, fires at known gathering points, road junctions, Main Supply Routes, assembly areas, etc - to keep the bad guy nervous that the world around him might start exploding at any minute.

Not really relevant to today's operating environment, right? But, it *is*

The UAVs we fly over Afghanistan and Pakistan looking for targets of opportunity are a form of H&I fires, if you really want to parse it finely. We just have better sensors and fire control now.

I call the post that because it's random things posted by me and people I've given posting privileges to that particular topic. It's also an open trackback, so if (Don Surber uses it this way a lot) someone has a post they're proud of, but it really isn't either Castle kind of stuff, or topical to a particular post, I've basically given blanket permission to use that post for that purpose. Another term of art that might be appropriate is "Free Fire Zone".

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