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Everything posted by Antonov

  1. Hey, all. I've ordered the Monogram 1/144 US/USSR Missile Set, which comes with an MX/Peacekeeper ICBM. I understand that the Orbital Sciences Minotaur rocket series (or at least, the Minotaur IV/V) is made by modifying decommissioned Peacekeepers into launch vehicles. If I wanted to convert the Monogram Peacekeeper into a Minotaur, how would I go about it? While we're at it, if I wanted to convert the kit's Titan II ICBM into a Gemini Launch Vehicle (GLV), what would I need to do for that? Thanks.
  2. Oh, come now. We both know that people who make it to the top in the military get there because they know how to play politics. And yes, I will take the word of a sergeant who actually walked the streets of Fallujah over that of a Pentagon General whose idea of a bad day is PowerPoint crashing, his golf date with the SecDef getting rained out, or the Starbucks in Georgetown running out of whipped cream. Who was responsible? Guys like John Boyd and Pierre Sprey, who made themselves very unpopular by 1) knowing what the hell they were talking about and 2) not being afraid to say so. Erm... what? That doesn't even make any sense. Yes, Generals do get the blame - and the credit. That's why they get the corner office and the big bucks. Responsibility comes with the job. Secondly, I just don't get this attitude of "We can't know with 100% certainty what the next war will look like, so let's spend astronomical sums of money preparing for one specific scenario even though we haven't fought a war that looks like that in 70 years, and there's not much reason to think that that specific scenario is a highly likely one in the future". The logic of this - especially at a time when the head of the JCS has said that the biggest threat to this country's national security is the national debt - escapes me. So this proves... what, exactly? MRAP's are wrong for Korea. And? Not every piece of equipment is right for every battlefield. Winter coats are wrong for Kuwait - does that mean that the military shouldn't have any? "Sorry, Private - I know guard duty at Elmendorf is kind of cold in February, but we didn't buy any cold weather gear because it just wouldn't make any sense at Ali al Salem". Crazy as a soup sandwich.
  3. Let's define: "military". I think that the military is full of enlisteds and NCOs and junior officers who are greatly sensible people and who have learned tremendous lessons from the last dozen years of combat. I also think that has nothing to do with the people who work in the Capitol or in the Five-Sided Wind Tunnel on the Potomac or in the management of vast defense contractor conglomerates. Who, incidentally, are the ones making the big decisions. True enough, but there's also a very wide variance in what "war" might look like. Nobody says it has to be huge nation-states sending supersonic whiz-boomers at each other. In a couple of hundred years - or less - "war" could mean here what it does in a lot of the world: teenagers with AKs riding around in the back of a Toyota Hilux with a recoilless rifle bolted to the bed, fighting over a usable water supply or the last working generator for a hundred miles. No, I'm not saying that will definitely happen (twenty years ago I would have called that idea ridiculous and impossible - now I just say it's not likely for the immediate future), but I am trying to say that the idea that wars will go away altogether in the future is a very different proposition than the idea that wars in the future might look very different from the ones we saw in the 20th century. It won't happen. It was mutually-assured suicide for two nuclear-armed nations to step off on each other 50 years ago, and it still is today. Our leadership may suffer from a severe lack of grownups, but I doubt they're so delusional that they don't understand that at least.
  4. Of course they're phasing out the A-10. The A-10, designed in the wake of the hard lessons learned in Vietnam, is a machine designed for serious combat by the serious military of a serious nation facing a serious enemy. Increasingly our military exists for show instead of combat, we are ever-more an unserious nation full of unserious people with unserious leaders, and where we have real enemies to speak of, they are largely creations of our own incomprehensible and self-defeating foreign policies. This has been the trend under the leadership of both parties for at least twenty years now. It's not the fault of the average man in uniform, but it is what it is nonetheless. Also in the article is the news that the KC-10s will be getting the ax, leaving the half-century-old KC-135s as our sole big tanker - aircraft for which there is no replacement in sight despite a decade or so of trying to make that happen. What could possibly go wrong?
  5. As my mom always says: If it was up your nose, you'd know where it was.
  6. Uhm... yeah: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/126459-US-Air-Force-Confirms-Existence-of-Brony-Squadron Not too impressed.
  7. Not exactly modeling-related, but I think we can all relate to spending a foolishly large amount of money on a hobby. Yahoo Finance has an interesting article on the Robinson family of Los Angeles, who tried cashing in on the Beanie Baby craze of the 90s by becoming huge collectors of the toys. When the Beanie Baby bubble burst, it left them bankrupt. Full story, along with a short documentary on the subject, here: http://finance.yahoo.com/news/a-family-spent--100-000-on-beanie-babies-to-put-their-kids-through-college-155053345.html
  8. The Wind Rises is the new film by Hayao Miyazaki, creator of My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki's Delivery Service Porco Rosso, Ponyo, and many others. It's based on writer Tatsuo Hori's biography of Jiro Horikoshi, designer of the A6M Zero. It follows Horikoshi's life from his childhood, through his experience in the Great Kanto Earthquake, and into his career at Mitsubishi leading up to WWII. Trailer here: The film was just released in Japan, so it might not hit America for a while, but I'll definitely be keen to see it when it does.
  9. Get the YouTube app, or better yet - ProTuber.
  10. It isn't like we were winning them 20% more before now...
  11. Looks like the budget cuts are hitting at the top, too: http://www.usnews.com/news/politics/articles/2013/07/16/hagel-top-military-brass-to-be-cut-20-percent Better that than to short-shrift Sergeants in the field.
  12. Today - a man sues Apple, claiming that the internet pr0n he was looking at on his Macintosh caused his marriage to suffer: http://ars.to/1bA5mYo
  13. They're suing Boeing, UAL, AA, Colgan Air, the Mass. Port Authority, and others: http://news.yahoo.com/judge-mull-airlines-owe-wtc-152212570.html I don't think it's being political to say that this is utter BS, and an example of everything that's wrong with the American civil law system.
  14. Yarrr, matey! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=os5TXyJlEMc
  15. Welcome to the 21st century - a passenger has already posted his status and a picture to his favorite social network: https://path.com/p/1lwrZb
  16. Aircraft crashed on landing, little else known at this time: http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_SAN_FRANCISCO_AIRLINER_CRASH?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2013-07-06-15-14-51
  17. Aaaaaaaaaaand Satan grabs for his winter jacket - I completely and wholeheartedly agree with everything that TT just said.
  18. Yeah, ain't that the truth: http://mentalfloss.com/article/51270/11-things-we-no-longer-see-airplanes Although, admittedly, #12 could be "tickets that cost $1200 (in 1970s dollars) for a coast-to-coast roundtrip in coach".
  19. The USAF is now offering a nearly quarter-million-dollar bonus for fighter pilots who decide to re-up for a nine-year commitment, half of which can be taken immediately in a lump-sum payment, says the Air Force Times: http://www.airforcetimes.com/article/20130625/CAREERS03/306250024/Air-Force-offers-fighter-pilots-225-000-stay-in Interesting. Is retention really that bad?
  20. I got 99 Ospreys and the Prez gets one.
  21. AHS, at www.airline-hobby.com is the best place to get started.
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