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Poland Officially Requests F-35's


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#1 Dawes

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 1900 PM

Guess everyone saw that coming:

 

https://www.dsca.mil...oland_19-49.pdf


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#2 Special-K

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 2344 PM

https://mobile.reute...p/idUSKCN1VW29R



WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. State Department said on Wednesday it had approved a proposed sale of 32 Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 fighter jets worth $6.5 billion to Poland.

In April, the Pentagon told Congress it was considering selling the jets to the European nation, a NATO member, as well as Greece, Romania, Spain and Singapore.

The sale would boost Poland's contributions to NATO and reduce the country's dependence on Russian equipment, a State Department official said in a statement. During the Cold War, Poland, which shares borders with Russia and fellow NATO member Germany, belonged to the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact.



-K
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#3 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 0219 AM

Guess thats going to be the end of the Mig29 in Polish Service. The American warbird market is going to be buzzing. :D


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#4 lastdingo

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 0724 AM

Pointless.

Pretty much the whole of Poland is in range of Kaliningrad Oblast-based Iskander missiles.

The handful high value targets would be destroyed in the first minutes of hot conflict.


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#5 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 0727 AM

Just pointing out, its not specifying what variant. I could see buying B models might be a good idea here. Its not as if there is much in the way of airbases in Northeast Poland anyway.


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#6 TTK Ciar

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 0922 AM

Pretty much the whole of Poland is in range of Kaliningrad Oblast-based Iskander missiles.
The handful high value targets would be destroyed in the first minutes of hot conflict.


The Russians will need to consider the scenario where conflict starts with those F-35s already in the air, and reposition appropriate assets accordingly.
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#7 lastdingo

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1107 AM

 

Pretty much the whole of Poland is in range of Kaliningrad Oblast-based Iskander missiles.
The handful high value targets would be destroyed in the first minutes of hot conflict.


The Russians will need to consider the scenario where conflict starts with those F-35s already in the air, and reposition appropriate assets accordingly.

 

 

 

NATO is not going to attack, so Russia gets to choose the timing of the attack.

NATO MIGHT move its high value targets in time, but then the Russians can simply delay, delay again, again, again - till NATO is desensitised and the Russians get a satisfactory strategic surprise attack chance.

 

I've repeatedly argued on my blog that high value targets are of dubious deterrence value in light of precision-guided conventional missiles with hundreds or thousands of km range.


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#8 Josh

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1139 AM

Well the alternative is to simply not buy aircraft, which seems like the wrong direction to go in.


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#9 JW Collins

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1403 PM

With Aegis ashore and multiple Patriot batteries it's going to take a whole lot of ballistic missiles to put an airfield out of action permanently. Unless you go nuclear that is.

Edited by JW Collins, 12 September 2019 - 1403 PM.

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#10 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1412 PM

One has to ask the obvious question, why would Poland leave combat aircraft in Poland in range of kalibr, when they could displace o Germany and Denmark and stage in via tanker?
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#11 Josh

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1422 PM

You're saying Poland should store its entire air force with zee Germans on a permanent basis? I can think of a couple historical reasons why they wouldn't be keen to do that. Or rely on any foreign power at all, really. But it does seem like they would benefit from a very robust hardening and decoy program along with a rapid dispersal plan in times of conflict and tension. I've never looked at their airbases but I presume they are ex Soviet era and probably came fairly hardened after the WP breakup. They also might invest in whatever the US builds to replace ATACMS. It wouldn't have the range or speed of Iskander but it would allow for a persistent mobile response to targets near their border. Both contract competitors indicate they can extend the range requirement now that INF is gone; initial testing is due I think in January.


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#12 lastdingo

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1425 PM

Well the alternative is to simply not buy aircraft, which seems like the wrong direction to go in.

 

Poland cannot defend itself against Russia all alone. It has to think of itself as a member of an alliance. Not all members of NATO are this much exposed to first hour attacks.

Miniature well-rounded militaries proved to be disasters again and again in history.

Just look at how much good having a tiny navy did to Poland in 1939.

 

With Aegis ashore and multiple Patriot batteries it's going to take a whole lot of ballistic missiles to put an airfield out of action permanently. Unless you go nuclear that is.

 

Aegis ashore is technically irrelevant against Iskanders.

Patriot batteries are hardly ever deployed, have a small protection footprint, there are few such batteries (or "firing units"), and even deployed ones won't have their radar and command center active all the time for weeks or months.

Neither Aegis ashore nor Patriot are relevant against a surprise attack for Iskander, Kalibr et al. They are targets.

 

One has to ask the obvious question, why would Poland leave combat aircraft in Poland in range of kalibr, when they could displace o Germany and Denmark and stage in via tanker?

 

Because that's how it works. To evacuate the combat aircraft to other allies where vastly bigger allied air forces are at first hint of a crisis would be an admission of the Polish air force being inappropriate. They would have to maintain the fiction of Poland defending itself from Poland out of predictable bureaucratic self-service until there's war. And then it's too late.


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#13 lastdingo

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1427 PM

You're saying (...)?

 

https://defense-and-...forces-siy.html


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#14 Chris Werb

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1432 PM

One has to ask the obvious question, why would Poland leave combat aircraft in Poland in range of kalibr, when they could displace o Germany and Denmark and stage in via tanker?

 

Forgetting other problems, both countries are well in range of Kalibr.


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#15 Nobu

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1439 PM

The purchase may be as much for prestige and Polish economic self-affirmation as it may be for fulfilling operational military needs. A we-have-arrived signal to some. A signal of another sort to others.


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#16 Olof Larsson

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1717 PM

Pointless.

Pretty much the whole of Poland is in range of Kaliningrad Oblast-based Iskander missiles.

The handful high value targets would be destroyed in the first minutes of hot conflict.

 

"A handful" of targets in this case, are hundreds of targets, at dozens of different places.

 

For instance, 10 airfields, that each would require several dozens of Iskander missiles (HAS's, hangars, run-ways, taxi-ways, underground fuel tanks, munition stores, aprons and so on.) So, Russia might not have enough Iskander missiles in all of Russia, to take out the polish air fields. Especially not, as all of Kaliningrad, can be reached by artillery from NATO territory. Furthermore, if the poles would use smoke screens at those targets, the necessary munition expense for Russia, to take out the polish air fields, would increase from hundreds of missiles, to thousands of missiles, while Russia can only deliver ~24 Iskander missiles, in the first minutes of a war.

 

What Russia can realistically achieve in the first few minutes, against those airfields, is to temporarily make the runways unusable. It wouldn't prevent the poles, from taking off from taxi-ways, or taxi by road, to the nearest road that can be used to take off from though.


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#17 lastdingo

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1749 PM

No, the handful of targets are the handful of F-35s. Those will be parked in shelters and maintenance hangars on one or two airbases. I did once count the quantity of targets on a German airbase (Nörvenich) and arrived at 30 very likely positions for combat aircraft.

 

The price for missiles to penetrate and hit these positions with each two missiles is less than for a single F-35 fly-away cost.

 

 

You're writing in total denial of what I actually wrote about: A strategic surprise attack. There's no such thing as smoke screens or artillery attacks on Iskander. I didn't discuss whether F-35s are usable in wartime. I noted that Polish F-35s would be useless because they wouldn't see more than but a few minutes of wartime.

 

A high value target-centric deterrence & defence strategy is extremely fragile in the context of PGMs with hundreds or thousands of km range.

It might even be destabilising, as it might entice to reap the benefits of a strategic surprise attack.


Edited by lastdingo, 12 September 2019 - 1751 PM.

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#18 Dawes

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 1904 PM

Just pointing out, its not specifying what variant. I could see buying B models might be a good idea here. Its not as if there is much in the way of airbases in Northeast Poland anyway.

"Poland has requested to buy thirty-two (32) F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Conventional Take Off and Landing (CTOL) Aircraft and thirty-three (33) Pratt & Whitney F-135 Engines."


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#19 JasonJ

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 2215 PM

Poland can into da club of Fthirty5s! Finland got em too :) Ally Eurobirds to be in zee Balitics. Lotsa stuff. If Russia drinken much too vodka an attack, first big concentration needs, だから Polish an allies can be in air or other 準備 stuff in time.

Edited by JasonJ, 12 September 2019 - 2216 PM.

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#20 JasonJ

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 2225 PM

Oh, me got onez more idea, Polish F-35 can also help 'Merica coalition for whateverz like help pound sand in sandbox like UKians, Frenchies, an' others somdtimes do. Somethings lik dat.
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