The finding of a likely cause of F-22 pilot hypoxia-like events hasn’t changed the Air Force’s conclusion that pilot error caused the fatal crash of an F-22 in Alaska in November 2010. Outgoing Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz, in a July 24 press conference, reiterated comments he made earlier this year in budget testimony that the crash, which killed Capt. Jeffrey Haney, was a “complex emergency” and “we respect [Haney’s] effort to save the aircraft.” However, Schwartz maintained, “what we do know for certain” is that the cause of the accident “was not a hypoxia event.” When a reporter pressed Schwartz as to whether the Air Force would stick to its conclusion that Haney’s crash was due to pilot error, Schwartz said—and repeated—that the reporter’s “fixation on that terminology is not fair,” and declined to comment further. (Schwartz transcript)
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.