Thursday, December 26, 2013

Fwd: One Pilot's version

Subject: One Pilot's version
This is so important, and I know in my heart that they think the "fickle public" will just forget it.  I for one cannot forget that they let our citizens, who were working for our country, plus the SEALS who rushed to defend them, our county's top decision-makers let them die without any attempt to defend them!!
This should make it very clear what happened by long-time Air Force experts who flew many a rescue in their time.  This is lengthy, but he has a lot to say, and if you want to know the "real skinny", read on….. 

One Pilot's version
An experienced pilot speaks out on the Benghazi disaster!
Begin forwarded message:
"Hands" Handley was my boss when I was on the USAF Stan Eval team
when you and I were both stationed at Ramstein in the late 70's. I
guess "outspoken" is an understatement because Phil would tell it like
it was and that is the main reason he was so well respected by all of
those who ever worked for him. As far as I know he was the only pilot
"living" to loop a C-130. His "outspokenness" did get him fired as the
F-15 wing commander at Luke. At his going away speech he was given a 45
minute (or something close to that....I wasn't there, just heard about
it) standing ovation. Phil is kind of like a George Patton in that he
needed to be wrapped up and saved for combat. He is a hell of a guy and
I would fly with him anytime.

I would say every US fighter pilot, retired or on active duty, knows
that Panetta and Dempsey both are full of crap when they said there was
no time to send help to Benghazi . They claim it was a problem of
"time/space." All my friends and I say, "Bullshit." We know they could
have gotten F-16s there from Aviano.
"Hands" Handley is a well-respected USAF fighter pilot. Here is his
short resume and what he just wrote about Benghazi below that. If
anything, Handley is pessimistic in his timeline of when F-16s could
have reached Benghazi . I think they could have been airborne even
sooner and turned quicker at Sig. The decision to not try was not based
on capability. We had the operational capability in every way.
I hope Handley's taxes are in order. His IRS audit is forthcoming.
Eagle Biography
Colonel Phil "Hands" Handley
Colonel Phil "Hands" Handley is credited with the highest speed air-
to-air gun kill in the history of aerial combat. He flew operationally
for all but 11 months of a 26-year career, in aircraft such as the F-86
Saber, F-15 Eagle, and the C-130A Hercules. Additionally, he flew 275
combat missions during two tours in Southeast Asia in the F- 4D and
F-4E. His awards include 21 Air Medals, 3 Distinguished Flying Crosses,
and the Silver Star.
Betrayal in Benghazi
Phil "Hands" Handley Colonel, USAF (Ret.)
The combat code of the US Military is that we don't abandon our dead
or wounded on the battlefield. In US Air Force lingo, fighter pilots
don't run off and leave their wingmen. If one of our own is shot down,
still alive and not yet in enemy captivity, we will either come to get
him or die trying.
Among America 's fighting forces, the calm, sure knowledge that such
an irrevocable bond exists is priceless. Along with individual faith
and personal grit, it is a sacred trust that has often sustained hope
in the face of terribly long odds.
The disgraceful abandonment of our Ambassador and those brave
ex-SEALs who fought to their deaths to save others in that compound is
nothing short of dereliction-of-duty.
Additionally, the patently absurd cover-up scenario that was
fabricated in the aftermath was an outright lie in an attempt to shield
the President and the Secretary of State from responsibility.
It has been over eight months since the attack on our compound in
Benghazi . The White House strategy, with the aid of a "lap dog" press
has been to run out the clock before the truth is forthcoming.
The recent testimonies of the three "whistle blowers" have reopened
the subject and hopefully will lead to exposure and disgrace of those
responsible for this embarrassing debacle. It would appear that the
most recent firewall which the Administration is counting on is the
contention "that there were simply no military assets that could be
brought to bear in time to make a difference" mainly due to the
unavailability of tanker support for fighter aircraft.
This is simply BS, regardless how many supposed "experts" the
Administration trot out to make such an assertion.
The bottom line is that even if the closest asset capable of
response was half-way around the world, you don't just sit on your
penguin ass and do nothing.
The fact is that the closest asset was not half-way around the
world, but as near as Aviano Air Base , Italy where two squadrons of
F-16Cs are based.
Consider the following scenario (all times Benghazi local): When
Hicks in Tripoli receives a call at 9:40 PM from Ambassador Stevens
informing him "Greg, we are under attack!" (his last words), he
immediately notifies all agencies and prepares for the immediate
initiation of an existing "Emergency Response Plan."
At AFRICON, General Carter Ham attempts to mount a rescue effort,
but is told to "stand down". By 10:30 PM an unarmed drone is overheadthe compound and streaming live feed to various "Command and Control
Agencies" and everyone watching that feed knew damn well what was going on.
At 11:30 PM Woods, Doherty and five others leave Tripoli, arriving
in Benghazi at 1:30 AM on Wednesday morning, where they hold off the
attacking mob from the roof of the compound until they are killed by a
mortar direct hit at 4:00 AM.
So nothing could have been done, eh? Nonsense. If one assumes that
tanker support really "was not available" what about this:
When at 10:00 PM AFRICON alerts the 31st TFW Command Post in Aviano
Air Base, Italy of the attack, the Wing Commander orders preparation
for the launch of two F-16s and advises the Command Post at NAS
Sigonella to prepare for hot pit refueling and quick turn of the jets.
By 11:30 PM, two F-16Cs with drop tanks and each armed with five
hundred 20 MM rounds are airborne. Flying at 0.92 mach they will cover
the 522 nautical miles directly to NAS Sigonella in 1.08 hours. While
in-route, the flight lead is informed of the tactical situation, rules
of engagement, and radio frequencies to use.
The jets depart Sigonella at 1:10 AM with full fuel load and cover
the 377 nautical miles directly to Benghazi in 0.8 hours, arriving at
1:50 AM which would be 20 minutes after the arrival of Woods, Doherty
and their team.
Providing that the two F-16s initial pass over the mob, in full
afterburner at 200 feet and 550 knots did not stop the attack in its
tracks, only a few well placed strafing runs on targets of opportunity
would assuredly do the trick.
Were the F-16s fuel state insufficient to recover at Sigonella after
jettisoning their external drop tanks, they could easily do so at
Tripoli International Airport , only one-half hour away.
As for those hand-wringing naysayers who would worry about IFR
clearances, border crossing authority, collateral damage, landing
rights, political correctness and dozens of other reasons not to act"
screw them. It is high time that our "leadership" get their priorities
straight and
put America 's interests first.
The end result would be that Woods and Doherty would be alive.
Dozens in the attacking rabble would be rendezvousing with "72 virgins"
and a clear message would have been sent to the next worthless POS
terrorist contemplating an attack on Americans that it is not really a
good idea to "tug" on Superman's cape.
Of course all this would depend upon a Commander In Chief that was
more concerned with saving the lives of those he put in harm's way than
getting his crew rested for a campaign fund raising event in Las Vegas
the next day. As well as a Secretary of State that actually understood
"What difference did it make?", or a Secretary of Defense whose
immediate response was not to the effect that "One of the military
tenants is that you don't commit assets until you fully understand the
tactical situation." Was he not watching a live feed from the unarmed
drone, and he didn't understand the tactical situation?
Ultimately it comes down to the question of who gave that order to
stand down? Whoever that coward turns out to be should be exposed,
removed from office, and face criminal charges for dereliction of duty.
The combat forces of the Untied States of America deserve leadership
that really does "have their back" when the chips are down.

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