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New Fighters Needed Sooner


August 14, 2009— As this graph from the National Guard Bureau Fiscal 2010 posture statement shows the Air Guard's fighter fleet ranges in age from 20-plus to 30-plus years, while its KC-135 tankers are more than 45 years old. The aircraft recapitalization problem facing the Air National Guard is "a little bit more acute" than the one facing the active duty Air Force, Lt. Gen. Harry Wyatt III, ANG director, told the Defense Writers Group in Washington, D.C., on July 29. Wyatt had informed Congress earlier this year that Air Guard F-16s that comprise the bulk of the homeland air sovereignty alert force will age out in eight years. The Air Guard expects to see new F-35s going to ASA units, but Wyatt said they would be "several years too late." He told the DWG he has been working with USAF to advance the timetable but had yet to see a plan.

Chart source: National Guard Bureau Fiscal 2010 Posture Statement