Air Force needs to stay prepared to battle U.S. enemies

Published: Thursday, Jul. 25, 2013 - 10:07 am

Re "Time to downsize Air Force" (Letters, July 24): The letter writer contends the U.S. Air Force has no serious adversaries anywhere in the world. That's what the isolationists were asserting before World War II. Fortunately, President Franklin D. Roosevelt had the foresight to accelerate aircraft production in 1940, nearly two years before the U.S. entered the war.

In the late 1940s when the U.S. was disarming, no one foresaw a need to build up air power because of a threat from North Korea. As a result, U.S. pilots were outclassed in their F-80s and propeller-driven P-51s by North Korean MiG-15s early on.

In 1962 we were in the midst of the Cold War, but who thought it would be brought to within 90 miles of our shores? It was the Air Force's ability to quickly deploy hundreds of bombers and fighters against Cuba that got the Soviet Union to withdraw the missiles.

Potential adversaries? Iran, North Korea, China, et al.

-- Ronald Azarcon, Fair Oaks

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