"The “World Famous Rocketeers” were flying high two months ago. The Air Force fighter squadron had returned safely with its F-15E Strike Eagles and aircraft crews from a six-month Middle East deployment, and in March the entire wing passed a readiness evaluation with an unusually high rating.
That was then. In April, the Air Force ordered the Rocketeers — more formally, the 336th Fighter Squadron — to stop flying because of the automatic budget cuts known as sequestration.
Now, the squadron’s two dozen F-15s are parked underneath canopies on the flight line, with red covers over their gaping afterburners to keep out birds and critters. Glum pilots find themselves with lots of time for softball and community projects. And the Air Force has one less fighter squadron available to fight.“I have zero readiness and zero combat capability right now,” said Lt. Col. Jim Howard, the 41-year-old squadron commander. “It’s extremely frustrating, knowing the unit that I had two months ago compared to where we are now.”
It’s a story repeated at bases across the country and the world, where the Air Force has stood down 13 combat squadrons, nearly one-third of its active-duty fighter and bomber squadrons, to meet a $600 million reduction in money available for flying and readiness dictated by the mandatory cuts."FROM:
The U.S. Congress is renowned the world over for it’s ability to do nothing. If they continue to do nothing the full brunt of Sequester will be here in 2014 to ?
“Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh III estimates that sequestration will force a 15 percent cut in flying hours, meaning that “Within three to four months, many of our flying units will be unable to maintain mission readiness.”51 Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos plans to cancel modernization and infrastructure investments, diverting funds that should be supporting long-term requirements to meet urgent needs.”
By Harry Stein November 2013