A Different Answer

Air Force leaders told lawmakers that the outcome of the past Mobility Capabilities Studies would have called for more C-17s had the service not been forced to sustain costly and less effective older model C-5s. Air Force Secretary Michael Wynne told House appropriators Monday that the Congressional hold on retiring C-5As leaves the service “with a reasonable amount of C-17s.” And, if that weren’t clear enough, Wynne responded to continued questioning with, the service is buying “enough” C-17s, “if we can’t get rid of the C-5s.” He explained that there are 59 A model C-5s that USAF would like to retire because the C-5A “normally breaks,” making it an “expensive airplane.” (Congress has prohibited the Air Force from retiring around 340 older aircraft of varying types; read “Under Lockdown.”)