A-29 Super Tucano – A Force Multiplier in COIN

A-29 Super Tucano – A Force Multiplier in COIN by Daniel Gouré - Real Clear Defense

Air power cannot win wars. But without it, land forces rarely prevail. This was true for Allied forces in World War II, Korea, Vietnam and, of course, the 1991 Persian Gulf War and the 2003 invasion of Iraq. It is equally true for today’s struggle against insurgents and terrorist groups such as ISIS, al Qaeda, and Boko Haram.

Counterinsurgency warfare requires a different complement of aerial platforms than is the case for major conflicts between modern states. Coalition air forces are not required to seize control of the air in the face of hostile fighters and advanced ground-based air defenses. Thus, they can concentrate on missions that support ground operations: intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), close air support, battlefield interdiction and pilot training. Modern, high-performance aircraft such as F-15, F16 and F18 fighters, B-1 bombers, and EA-18G electronic warfare planes have performed extremely well in Iraq and Afghanistan. But so too have relatively simple platforms including unmanned aerial systems.

The explosion of jihadist insurgencies across Africa, the Middle East and Asia has created an almost insatiable demand for airborne ISR and close air support…

The A-29 first began operating in Afghanistan in 2016. Twelve aircraft have been delivered, seven are in the U.S. for training, and another six will be provided to the AAF by 2018. Over the past eighteen months, the LAS have conducted hundreds of missions across the country including at high altitudes and in regions with extreme temperatures. Afghan maintainers, trained in the U.S, have demonstrated a growing ability to support a high operational tempo. It is likely that over time additional aircraft will be bought in order to allow the AAF to provide air support throughout Afghanistan.

The capabilities the A-29 provides has drawn the attention of other nations facing similar challenges from terrorist organizations, as well as the need to surveil and secure long land borders…

Read on.

0
Your rating: None

Comments

Yawn...I wonder how much SNC and Embraer donated to the Lexington Institute for this advertisement....