These are some of the coolest A-10 Warthog air-to-air, in action photos ever

Nov 23 2013 - 5 Comments

Even if the fleet of 350 “Boars” is essential to conduct Close Air Support (CAS) missions in Afghanistan and in any other low intensity conflict the U.S. may be called to fight in the future, the Air Force has a plan to prematurely retire all its A-10 Warthog aircraft between 2015 and 2018.

While some senators and congressmen are fighting back against this decision, the future of the American troops in theater will be tied to the effectiveness, reliability and capabilities of the F-35, that is going to replace the A-10 in the air-to-surface, Troops-In-Contact (TIC) role.

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In the meanwhile, Warthog aircrews continue to train, even though the training pipeline for pilots destined to this type of aircraft has already been scaled back.

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The images in this post, taken by Jim Haseltine and made available by the Air Force, show A-10C Thunderbolt II “Warthogs” with the 188th Fighter Wing, Arkansas Air National Guard conduct close-air support training near Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona.

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The A-10 can carry AGM-65 Maverick missiles, Snakeye bombs, Paveway LGB (Laser Guided Bombs) but their main weapon is the GAU-8 Avenger, a 30 mm rotary cannon, the heaviest such cannon mounted on a fast jet.

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How many aircraft can fly low and hit hard employing such variety of guided and unguided weapons?

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Image credit: USAF / Jim Haseltine

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  • Chris Muncy

    The A-10′s pictured landing in the Azores are the ones that my son works on, maintaining the egress systems (aka ejection seats and canopy explosives). He came back from Bagram directly to Moody AFB instead of following the Flying Tigers back in.

  • marcusjd

    Phase them out of USAF inventory and let the Army take them into their fixed wing aviation inventory. They belong in contact with ground pounders anyway!

    • VFA41_Lion

      Give half to the army and half to the USMC. Problem solved.

    • Heinleinslostson

      The AF fighter mafia was never happy with the A10. When the F15 was being designed the motto was “not one pound for air to ground”. Of course to be relevant in today’s theater of operations they had to extend the A10 career a couple of times. The US Army has always hungered to get the A10, because its sole mission is to support the front line grunt. The Air Pukes would rather get rid of this proven war fighter then let the Army have its own fixed wing.

  • FoilHatWearer

    Love it, good pic!