The U.S. Air Force as you know it no longer exists: beginning today, 17 combat units grounded

Apr 09 2013 - 101 Comments

According to internal documents obtained by Air Force Times, beginning on Apr. 9, 2013, the U.S. Air Force will begin grounding front line combat units as a consequence of sequestration and the need to deal with budget cuts.

Seventeen squadrons belonging to the various U.S. Air Force commands are going to be affected by the stand down order.

The grounding is aimed to save the 44,000 flying hours (worth 591 million USD) through September.

The funded 241,496 flying hours will be distributed to those squadrons that will remain combat ready or are expected to keep a reduced readiness level called “basic mission capable” until the end of the Fiscal Year 2013.

Whilst some squadron will be immediately grounded, others will be forced down as soon as they come back from their overseas deployment. Among them, the 94th Fighter Squadron from Langley, whose F-22 Raptor stealth fighters currently deployed to Kadena, Okinawa and Osan airbase amid Korean Peninsula crisis, or 354th Fighter Squadron, 12 A-10C of which are currently returning to Davis Monthan after being deployed to Afghanistan.

Raptor Langley

Other grounded units include the Thunderbirds demo team, 555th Fighter Squadron from Aviano airbase, Italy; 77th Fighter Squadron from Shaw AFB, South Carolina; 492nd and 494th Fighter Squadrons from RAF Lakenheath, UK; 18th Aggressor Squadron from Eielson AFB, Alaska; B-52 squadrons belonging to the 2nd Bomb Wing from Barksdale AFB, Louisiana, and 5th Bomb Wing from Minot AFB, North Dakota; as well as B-1 squadrons from both 2nd and 7th Bomb Wing from Dyess AFB, Texas.

F16CJ 77th FS

Anyway, here’s the detailed list of involved squadrons by airframes prepared by Air Force Times.

F-22

94th Fighter Squadron — Grounded April 9

27th Fighter Squadron — Basic mission capable through September

3rd Fighter Wing — Two squadrons combat mission ready through September

15th Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

49th Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

F-15 C/D

67th Fighter Squadron — Basic mission capable through September

44th Fighter Squadron — Basic mission capable through July, then Combat mission ready through September

48th Fighter Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

F-15E

336th Fighter Squadron — Grounded April 9

335th Fighter Squadron — Combat mission ready through September

48th Fighter Wing — Two squadrons stand down April 9

391st Fighter Squadron — Stands down April 9

F-16 C/D

8th Fighter Wing — Two squadrons combat mission ready through September

77th Fighter Squadron — Stands down April 9

55th Fighter Squadron — Combat mission ready through September

79th Fighter Squadron — Basic mission capable through July, then combat mission ready through September

555th Fighter Squadron — Stands down April 9

510th Fighter Squadron — Combat mission ready through September

13th Fighter Squadron — Combat mission ready through September

14th Fighter Squadron — Basic mission capable through September

51st Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

57th Wing — One squadron (Thunderbirds) stands down April 9

158th Fighter Wing — One squadron stands down April 9

169th Fighter Wing — One squadron stands down April 9

187th Fighter Wing — One squadron stands down April 9

354th Fighter Wing — One squadron stands down April 9

4th Fighter Squadron — Basic mission capable until redeployment

421st Fighter Squadron — Basic mission capable through September

A-10C

75th Fighter Squadron — Basic mission capable through July, then combat mission ready through September

51st Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

52nd Fighter Wing — Closing

442nd Fighter Wing — One squadron stands down April 9

917th Wing — One squadron stands down April 9

HH-60G

18th Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

48th Fighter Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

B-1B

7th Bomb Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

2nd Bomb Wing — Two squadrons stand down April 9

B-2

509th Bomb Wing — Two squadrons combat mission ready through September

B-52

2nd Bomb Wing — One squadron stand down April 9

5th Bomb Wing — Two combat squadrons combat mission ready through September

E-3B/C/G

2nd Bomb Wing — Basic mission capable through September

18th Wing — One squadron basic mission capable through September

552nd Air Control Wing — One squadron basic mission capable through September

SE-4B

55th Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

EC-130H

55 Electronic Combat Group — One squadron combat mission ready through September

OC-135B

55th Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

RC-135S

55th Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

RC-135U

55th Wing — One squadron combat mission ready through September

RC-135V/W

55th Wing — One squadron basic mission capable through September

TC-135W

55th Wing (training) — One squadron basic mission capable through September

WC-135C/W

55th Wing. — One squadron combat mission ready through September

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  • wylie123

    We have Obama and democrats who conceived sequestration and their refusal to compromise to thank for this. There is enough money to keep this from happening but Obama won’t allow it hoping to deep six the Republicans. Purely political on his part.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dkjwilson Kelly Russell Wilson

    The President warned the American people there would be consequences. The republicans said he was using scare tactics…..Someones full of shit and its not our President!

  • Arnie

    This will lead to a much weaker United States and soon someone with much more air power and manpower will invade our shores and we will be helpless!

  • http://www.facebook.com/bartt2112 Bartt Frederickson

    while he may ground these planes and troops i bet he ande his family still take ten vacations with all the hoopla he is trying to destroy this county and the sheeple only care about the kardashians

  • Adam

    Yeah that is the right thing to do – NOT. The DHS gets to order TV and TIVO. Yes, that’s right TIVO. We recently reviewed an RFP for the Border Patrol who wanted TV’s on their firing range in Texas. What a joke.

  • http://www.facebook.com/clay.wilson.944 Clay Wilson

    Blow that dictator to hell and back pilots before he completely destroys our great nation!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=714901651 Pat Sherman

    this goverment has left us open to be bombed by our enemys. god help us. this man is insane. leaving us open to attack. is what he wants.

  • Michael Harmon

    Really? You guys need to lay off the Koolaid. We spend more on the military than the next top 12 countries combined! We could ground half our air force and still shoot anything out of the sky anywhere in the world before they got anywhere near us. Attack us indeed. Nobody’s going to attack us. We’d nuke ‘em flat before our dinner cooled. You guys need to start looking at the data on the ground and stop listening to your favorite group of while corporate ideologues that tell you what to believe.

  • Caligula

    We COULD instead cut down (RIFF) the ludicrous number of non-Combat officers of O-7 rank or better. General officers with no command save that of a desk at the Pentagon. Our military has become, like failing militaries before us, a military of multiple “I was there” medals, inflated ranks, and “couldn’t cut it” officers shoved aside into dead end positions so they could fill out their time and retire with a fat pension.

    Never mind that those self same officers have NO problem cutting the number of authorized enlisted personnel when times get tough. I was in on the Great Purge of 1982 when we had within our Cavalry Squadron (983 enlisted men) the authority to re-enlist only 9 men, and the requirement to cut the bottom 2.5% of our ranks (determined by the Squadron commander based on deficits in job performance and/or being a problem causer).

    I was detailed from my tank to the Squadron Legal Clerks office just prior to that as an “attaboy” so I could see how the army worked at Field Grade level, and ended up swamped with various discharges to meet the “goal”.

  • flybum

    With congressional approval at 10% perhaps it is time to vote the bums out and put in some new people who are willing to stand up for the country, constitution and the middle class. The bums that are shipping our jobs and factories out of the country, trying to take our guns, and now trying to cripple the military have no business in congress. And yet, all of us, despite knowing all of this, continue to vote our own politicians back into office. If you want things to remain the same, keep doing what you are doing.