The Navy is retiring its F-14D Tomcats in favor of the F/A-18E. Two strike fighter squadrons from NAS Oceana, Va., returned to base last week after completing a six-month deployment aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt. It was the last for the Tomcats. Navy officials said that decommissioning the Tomcats will reduce the maintenance workload for its sailors. Tomcats required about four times the man-hours per flight hour than the newer Super Hornet.
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.