When disaster strikes in a foreign country, when troops need transport, or when the Army needs materials, the C-17 is almost always the “go to” aircraft. The 4-engine, behemoth transports 60-ton tanks, with ease, and for its size, can nearly “land on a dime”.
The Air Force has a motto, “If the Army needs it, the Air Force can get it there” and more often than not, it’s in the massive C-17 Globemaster.
Since 1993, some 223 C-17s have been added to the Air Force fleet costing somewhere over $300 million apiece, from conception and design to final production.
Discontinuing the addition of new C-17s to the workhorse fleet of the Air Force has some calling it one of the biggest non-war blunders of the military. The Air Force stopped ordering C-17s in 2006.
Last minute Congressional appropriations have kept the program viable the last few years, largely because some 30,000 supplier jobs, in nearly every state, were at stake.
Examiner’s Note: Will the last worker out of Boeing’s Long Beach plant please turn off the lights? A sad goodbye to the end of an era.
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