The Money Crunch, Again

Air Combat Command says it cannot buy more than the 51 AN/ARC-210 radios it now rotates among A-10s operating in Southwest Asia. The command planned to add the radio upgrades to all 356 aircraft in the Warthog fleet, but it needs $60 million it doesn’t have. These radios would give the average 24-year-old A-10s the very much-needed capability to provide secure, immediate, and persistent contact with ground forces. With only 51 radios for operations and another 12 used for test and the weapons school, ACC does not have enough to provide routine A-10 pilot training, says Maj. Don Henry, ACC’s A-10 program element monitor. He also says the radios themselves will wear out faster from being installed and uninstalled over and over again.