US sends F-22 fighters to Middle East amid tensions with Iran

Brad Lendon – CNN June 29, 2019

F-22. Click to enlarge

The United States Air Force has dispatched top-of-the-line F-22 stealth fighters to Qatar for the first time as it beefs up its forces in the Middle East amid escalating tensions with Iran.

A statement and photos from US Air Forces Central Command said the stealth jets arrived at Al Udeid Air Base in Qatar on Thursday. The Air Force did not give the total number of F-22s deployed, but a handout picture showed at least five the warplanes over the base.

“These aircraft are deployed to Qatar for the first time in order to defend American forces and interests in the US Central Command area of responsibility,” the Air Force said.

The F-22 movement comes a week after an Iranian surface-to-air missile shot down a US drone over the Strait of Hormuz. Iran said the drone was in its airspace, but Washington claims it was over international waters.

Defense analyst Peter Layton, a former Australian Air Force officer now with the Griffith Asia Institute, says the likely mission of the F-22s in the event of full-scale hostilities with Iran would be targeting Tehran’s surface-to-air missile batteries, especially the S-300 system, its best air defense.

“The S-300 batteries would be the first target of the first wave to thereby open up airspace for following attacks” by other less stealthy US aircraft, Layton said.

In that sense, the presence of the F-22s is a strong deterrent to any further escalation in tensions by Iran, said Carl Schuster, a former director of operations at the US Pacific Command’s Joint Intelligence Center.

“It means (the US) is looking to stop something, not to initiate something,” he said.

The downing of the US drone was just the latest in a series of provocations between the US and Iran. The US has also blamed Iran for explosions on two oil tankers this month near the Strait of Hormuz, one of the world’s most vital strategic shipping routes, as well as on four commercial ships off the coast of the United Arab Emirates last month. Iran has categorically denied responsibility for the ship attacks.

Following the attacks Washington moved around 2,000 troops, an aircraft carrier strike group and B-52 bombers to the region. The F-22s are the latest additions to that buildup.

The twin-engine F-22 can be configured for air-to-air or air-to-ground missions.

In the former mode, it’s the best air-superiority fighter in the US arsenal. In the latter mode, with its speed and stealth capabilities, it becomes a prime platform for precision airstrikes on enemy targets.

“The combination of stealth, integrated avionics and supercruise drastically shrinks surface-to-air missile engagement envelopes and minimizes enemy capabilities to track and engage the F-22,” an Air Force fact sheet says.

Qatar is situated across the Persian Gulf from Iran, and the Al Udeid Air Base there is home to more than 11,000 US personnel, the largest concentration of US forces in the Middle East



2 responses to “US sends F-22 fighters to Middle East amid tensions with Iran”

  1. The F-22 Outdated And Out Costed Before It Even Flew The First Time

    This is a jet fighter that was largely designed back in the ’80s. Throughout its development and proving/testing phases, it was a reoccurring nightmare to keep it flying. Would anyone have missed the F-22 if it had never been built? No!

    If anything, Brad Lendon’s story is just propaganda for what is really known as a white elephant. The wildly known problems of the F-22, and its availability issues, have become legendary. As quoted in an National Interest article by Michel Peck, “…the problem is the Air Force practice of dividing squadrons into detachments, called Unit Type Codes, for overseas deployment. But the F-22 UTCs are not a uniform size. For example, one of the F-22’s UTCs is designed to have only 6 of a squadron’s 21 aircraft but contains almost 50 percent of the squadron’s equipment, approximately 40 percent of the squadron’s maintenance personnel and 60 percent of its operational personnel,” which leaves the remaining portion of the squadron with too few resources…”

    Yes, you read that right. Six F-22s require up to more than half of regular squadron’s (usually, 22 to 24 jets) ground support staff! That’s why in Lendon’s article he plays up the “5” F-22s. More nonsense propaganda from the warmongering billionaires!

    If there is any fighting at all with Iran, the F-22 will be more a white, check that, make that grey, elephant with a bulls-eye on its back than any potent fighter force. Since after all the Iranians can now shot down stealth like drones, you think the F-22 is any better, it is after all 1980’s based technology!

    It appears, the short-comings of the F-22 are so bad that the “mould” that was used to make these planes is no more. All because of technical and cost difficulties. Basically, the F-22 is an expensive grey elephant with serious technical and design flaws, that resulted it becoming so costly for it be fixed, that it was better to reduce the original order of 750 F-22s, to a limited order of less than 200 (depending on where you read, this figure is anywhere from 175 to 186 jets). Hence the small UTC of 6 planes, for a micro-fighter wing. Regular fighter wings of sizes around 22-24, would mean that there would be only about 7 to 8 fighter wings of this plane. So using this UTC system, you can now quadruple the “fighter squadrons” to use.

    Frankly, I have been reading about the F-22 and F-35 for years, or the The Flying Grey Elephant and The Flying Coffin, respectively. I have given up trying to understand American logic building pie-in-the-sky military hardware, that is not just fallible, but dangerous to its own user. Seriously, I sometimes wonder if the USA has some sort of “death wish.”

    And with weapons like the F-22, that’s supposed to scare the Iranians? Can you just imagine what the Iranians are thinking, considering they just shot down the most advanced drone in the world, the RQ-RA Global Hawk. Supposedly this drone can fly as high as 65,000 feet. Which is a ceiling that is higher than supposedly the F-22 can go. If Iran can shoot down something at that height, what’s the threat with the F-22? Answer, there isn’t any.

    I swear, I think most of the time, these journalist like Lendon, just start writing anything, with full moronic intention, to show how stupid they are. And the journalism industry is in demise, now you know why!

  2. US Scarecrows send CATCH-22s to Qatar

    The United States Air Farce has dispatched obsolete CATCH-22 stealth fighters to Qatar.

    The Air Farce did not give the total number of CATCH-22s deployed, but a handout picture showed five warplanes in a parking lot somewhere.

    “These aircrap are deployed to Qatar for the first time in order to ATTACK Iranian forces and interests in and around Iran”, the Air Farce did not say.

    “The CATCH-22 planes would be the first targets of the S-300 batteries followed by attacks on other less stealthy US aircraft”, Laydown could have said.”

    Thanks to the engineers at Plutonymus Maximus and their Hi-Jackit 22 air defense system, the CATCH-22′, missiles will be turned AROUND and guided to choice targets including the attackers and their military bases.

    The presence of the Hi-Jackit 22 system is a strong deterrent to any further escalation in tensions by the US and israhel, admitted Carl Shyster, a former director of terrorism at the US Pacific Command’s Joint Terrorism Center.

    “It means the US is looking to start something, but the Iranians are looking to finish something”, Shyster did not say…

    Meanwhile, back in Manitoba Canada, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers were polishing their long bombs and are expected to join their Moronican counterfarts in the Persian Gulf & Country Club, to try and look tough and ready for the cameras of Bullstream Media.

    Plutonymus Maximus Ready to Deliver Genius Bombs to Iran