U.S. Air Force

Avoiding empty cockpits: Addressing the Air Force’s pilot shortage problem

Each year the Pentagon spends billions of dollars upgrading older aircraft, buying new ones and developing super-secret next-generation capabilities. But in the op-ed below, FDD’s Bradley Bowman and Maj. Brian Leitzke argue that more needs to be done to ensure the Air Force has a steady supply of the most critical piece of the puzzle: pilots.

Beijing demonstrated its growing military strength this month as the People’s Liberation Army conducted large-scale air and naval exercises around Taiwan and even fired missiles over the island. Eyeing a possible conflict with China in the coming years, the US Air Force is trying to field next-generation aircraft in sufficient quantities to help deter aggression and achieve victory if deterrence fails.

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