More is not necessarily better

Modern materialistic society has ingrained many beliefs into human mind, beliefs which are typically taken for granted and thus rarely questioned. One of these beliefs is that having more of something is better than having less of it.

More information, for example, can have a positive effect of helping person reach a conclusion. But that is only true as long as person is capable of properly processing, analyzing and comparing the information. If not, thought process can be slowed down or stopped, something which, in combat, is almost invariably lethal – too much information is as bad as too little. For this reason, humans have many filters – most of them subconscious – which help them choose which information to process. This allows us to function, but also creates various different forms of bias. However, when it comes to fighting, system itself has to reduce the information flow, as pilot is too busy trying to kill the other guy and stop him from doing the same. Thus quality of presentation is far more important than amount of the information gathered. F-35s design team ignored this, resulting in pilots complaining about too much information – even in peacetime. And that is when F-35s inbuilt HAL-9000 isn’t doing its best to keep the aircraft grounded.

Above is part of a reason why large design teams on weapons project are not good. Having large teams complicates communication on a personal level, as people cannot really get to know each other. It also makes any innovative and radically different ideas less likely to be properly evaluated, let alone accepted, due to self-reinforcement effect that a large group of likeminded people invariably produces. This effect becomes obvious when comparing several projects: A-10, F-16, Rafale and Gripen were aircraft designed by relatively small companies (at least when compared to modern giants of Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Eurofighter), and perhaps more importantly, by small teams of people. Result are good, integrated designs with all the right tools for what they are supposed to be doing. On the other hand, F-35 had/has a massive design team, which complicated the design process and resulted in a bloated, underperforming design (albeit even greater problem was the perfectly illogical STOVL requirement put forward by USMC bureocracy).

This effect of design team size is one of the reasons why smaller companies tend to produce better designs; second one is that they are simply less able to afford mistakes. When designing Gripen, Saab was painfully aware of two facts: first, foreign aircraft would be evaluated as well in the process of selecting a new Swedish fighter to replace the Viggen; and second, it needed exportable fighter to guarantee survival in the reduced-threat post-Cold War world. End result is what is possibly the best fighter aircraft in the world on operational and strategic levels of war, if not on the (relatively irrelevant) tactical one.

Another consequence of the above is that aircraft’s price is perfectly unrelated to its capability. A properly designed aircraft will be both cheaper and more capable than an aircraft whose design process consisted of making a wish-list of technological capabilities. Further, an aircraft specialized for a single mission, or a single set of missions, will typically be both cheaper and better performing in said set of missions than an aircraft designed to do wildly different missions. Best example of this is comparing the A-10 to any fast jet. Due to air superiority and close air support missions having very different requirements, fast jets cannot do close air support and the A-10 cannot do air superiority missions. Both can, however, perform missions which are related to their basic design mission. While multirole jets can also drop bombs at ground targets, A-10 will always be superior in those roles due to being designed for ground attack, which results in both greater payload and greater precision (necessitating less bombs per target). Attempting to match the A-10s bomb-carrying capabilities with a jet designed for air combat results in size, complexity and cost increases which negate any theoretical advantages of using multirole fighters. Dassault Rafale is a perfect example of an air-superiority-fighter-slash-bomb-truck. Matching its air superiority capabilities with a properly designed fighter would result in a 40-50 million USD price tag, compared to Rafale’s current 90-100 million USD price tag. Current A-10 costs maybe 20 million USD. This means that for a price of one Rafale, one can have two air superiority fighters and one CAS fighter, or one air superiority fighter and two to three CAS fighters. Lesser complexity of single-role fighters would allow each aircraft to produce more sorties per day compared to Rafale. Further, designing an aircraft for a certain role means that one can immediately know what munitions aircraft will have to use (slim air-to-air missiles or big, fat air-to-ground missiles and bombs). Once that is known, aircraft can be optimized for performance with such weapons included. This approach is impossible with multirole fighters, unless one decides to optimize for one set of missions (typically air-to-air, which translates into penalties with air-to-ground payload).

Still, most important factor of using single-role fighters instead of multirole ones are pilots. Pilots of multirole jets have to acquire and maintain two very different and mutually conflicting skill sets. This results in a comparably shallow understanding of the mission and approaches. Focusing on one set of skills at the expense of another (as done in, e.g., AdlA) does not completely negate the problem, while making pilots effectively single-role (and aircraft is only as multirole as its pilot is). Single-role pilots are also unreplaceable caretakers of knowledge, as they can spend their entire time polishing and improving approaches necessary for their own mission. More complex the mission is more important this caretaking becomes, with the ultimate example of close air support which is impossible to do properly without a large basis of accumulated knowledge. This knowledge cannot be maintained, let alone improved and expanded upon, without having a cadre of pilots who specialize in the mission, as well as the appropriate platform to conduct said mission. Having aircraft in storage will not help, as even taking them out will mean little with knowledge having disappeared.

Lack of reasources often forces people to improvise and innovate, sometimes producing results that far exceed results of a classical, resource-intensive approach. Counterinsurgency warfare is a classical example. United States in Iraq and Afghanistan relied on firepower and numbers to deal with insurgents. This provided no results worth mentioning, with reliance on firepower producing more new insurgents than it killed old ones. French intervention in Mali on the other hand relied on maneuver, audacity, speed and initiative in attacking the far more powerful enemy on several key ponts of pressure. As a result, insurgents were broken and beaten back with minimum casualties and relatively low-scale involvement by the French, with reliance on African allies providing necessary legitimacy. This applies to conventional warfare as well. Germans in 1935-1940 were well aware that they were outnumbered and outgunned by Britain and France. As a result, they went back to old concepts of maneuver warfare, and newer concept of mechanized maneuver warfare (introduced by Poles in 1920). End result: only two years were needed to conquer most of the Europe, defeating almost all of its firepower-oriented militaries. Germans were only stopped once United States and Soviet Union – especially the latter – both accepted and implemented maneuver warfare against them.

From all of this, some lessons should be drawn for the future. Most important one is that not everything that can be done should be done. Before doing anything, first question that should be asked is: “Should this be done? (Is it necessary?)”, before asking “Can it be done? (Is it possible?)”. But that concept is something that modern science, and indeed the entire modern society, is seemengly very determined to ignore.

***

[P.S. Everything written above also applies to blogging. While it may seem wierd coming from me, with my tendency to write oftentimes excessively long articles, sometimes shorter articles are actually better and adress the topic more clearly (for example, this vs this). Similarly, a few comments that actually adress the topic of the article are better than hundreds of “This article is excellent!” or “This article sucks!” spam comments, and having a smaller number of readers who engage in discussion is better than a large number of readers who only – read.]

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18 replies

  1. There are other logics at play besides the prior factors. Like maintaining an industrial military complex. In the case of France, it meant maintaining an air superiority-nuclear penetration capable aircraft. But then a ground attack plane was also needed. To save money, the superiority aircraft was also made in a bomb truck, and also into a growler type air defense suppression with Thales’ Spectre device (that’s the way it was used in Libya in the first hour; Mirages 2000 dropped the bombs, Rafales knocked out the missile defense systems including missiles Libya was not supposed to have).

  2. Dassault Rafale seems to be a good exemple of why it makes the aircraft more expensive. but having no really dedicated aircraft of same era and level of technology, it makes your comparison complicated. The only aircraft of similar era wich is not optimised for air to air is the F-35 attack aircraft.

    And it must also be noted it was made for a carrier deployment. Something only the F-35 attack aircraft have in common.

    A non carrier Rafale (Mirage 4000 if made in aircraft) would have more freedom in it’s developpement.

    • Rafale’s size and weight were dictated by range and payload concerns. A dedicated air superiority fighter, that has no need to carry X kg of bombs to a target X km away, can afford to be smaller even if all air superiority requirements are equal. Bombs are heavy and draggy, more drag means higher fuel consumption – more fuel for a given range, which means larger and heavier aircraft (unless something else is sacrificed), which means more powerful engines and more thrust for a given speed, which means higher fuel consumption… end result is a larger and heavier aircraft.

      • Still an asset of the Rafale is that it is small (yet carries a lot… and supercruises, fully loaded. Anyway the Rafale is doing well in the Middle East and Africa, after being used in Afghanistan, something the Americano-Swedish Gripen can’t say…)

        • That is true… on the other hand, Rafale’s relatively higher price and operating cost hurt its export prospects. That being said, I’m not sure Rafale could have rivalled Gripen in these categories, simply due to AdlA/AN requirements.

      • Unit price should drop: instead of 189 Rafale and 100 option, we now talk about 237 Rafale and 112 or 124 options… Without India and it’s 36 rafale (for 126 needed at least) and EAU (60 is the usually eard number)

  3. It’s not just volume of information – it is the information is relevant at that point in time that is also an issue.

    Modern combat aircraft seem to be so focused on volume that they don’t sit back and ask – why??

  4. @Picard : ” Pilots of multirole jets have to acquire and maintain two very different and mutually conflicting skill sets.”

    – I tend to disagree, or at least I think this is just a way of looking at things. I remember being puzzled by french habit of sending pilots from specialised air to ground squadrons to multinational air to air exercises, most often with some surprising success. I heard it was some sort of arrogance, like doing a stunt blindfolded or some puerilistic stuff like that. But now I understand they are just doing things in the right way.

    The thing is, in any war scenari, the ones whith the greatest probability of getting stuck in a disavantageous dogfight situation (and thus the ones in greatest need of good AtA defense capacity and knowleges) are paradoxally the ones piloting the attack airplanes (or doing the attack role, since we’re talking multirole). This is obvious because a loaded attack airplane going your way is a priority target compared to the air superiority one potentially escorting it.

    Whilst what you say is true, it is true also that having an “attack airplane” which is a bitch to kill even from the sky, with a pilot whom have trained against the best AtA pilots (and platforms) of the West, is a huge asset to the success probability of the said attack mission.
    Having dedicated attack airplanes, with high wing loading and optimised for subsonic to low supersonic low level penetration for exemple requires a tricky organisation to get them protected from dedicated air superiority platforms optimised for supersonic flight at medium to high altitude, and with sensors logically focused toward the sky.

    I already made my point with you in another topic, but I think your analysis that single role platforms > multirole platform is quite debatable.
    In the end, you’re right that single role platforms will lead to better cost/efficiency ratio for almost every mission you’re looking at, but you should not discount versatility as an asset, even at strategic level, for the one having “multirole” cards in his game.

    Imagine your ennemy has put a few Typhoons on standby, with AtA ordnance and pilots in a small foreign base a few hundred km away from the battlefront (let’s say to the north). Then it deploys some Tornados IDS and ECR on its main base, let’s say more than thousand km southwest, plus another short batch of Typhoons. Do you agree that in such (simplistic) situation, every ennemy movement observable on the radar gives huge hints about what the ennemy plans to do, or at least greatly reduces the possibilities? Take the same scenario but instead put same load of F16 C and i (or Rafales C), with mixed ordnance and crews, and immediately the situation becomes foggy, as aircraft launch from each base could be either perfoming attack near the battle line, intending a deep strike, doing SEAD, planning escort from a vector yet to appear, and so and so on. All very debatable I agree but use of mutirole platforms provides larger array of actions, and thus optimise capacity to surprise / reduce ennemy capacity to counter.

    Another point I’d be making, is industrial and operational risk management. You can always have a bad incident with a given aircraft, which lead to it being grounded as long as you can’t correct it on all the models. This point is harmfull for “single role” user, as it can deny him of the capacity assumed by that model of plane. Arguably it’s even worse for the “multi role” user, who’s suddenly short of all its capacities! (imagine the french in 2030 having most of their Rafales grounded… They’d be left with a very few 2000D and nothing else.
    It happened a lot those years, including to aircrafts with more than ten years of service (Indian SU-30 grounded several times. Austrian and german Typhoons too for several incidents, morrocan Mirages F1 and lets not talk about F-35 yet to reach real IOC…)

    All this leads me to think the ideal structure would be mainly composed of single role platforms, ensuring a group of roles closely related, and then I’d have at least 20% of my fleet as multirole as possible (as credible as possible for the whole spectrum- ala Rafale) -volontary leaving CAS asside as we agree on that particularity. Trying to save cost from an extreme or another is wrong (single role is less costly per plane, but intends more numbers of planes, more pilots, more parts and more crew, multirole decrease maintenance cost at fleet scale because of parts mutualisation but increase aquisition cost par plane dramatically). With my proposed structure you’ll not save as much money on paper but you’ll have greater security / deterrance.

    • “Having dedicated attack airplanes, with high wing loading and optimised for subsonic to low supersonic low level penetration for exemple requires a tricky organisation to get them protected from dedicated air superiority platforms optimised for supersonic flight at medium to high altitude, and with sensors logically focused toward the sky.”

      Correct, but it all depends on a mission. And such attack aircraft typically can protect themselves (e.g. Tornado, F-35), so it is not really hopeless, but a fighter screen is always necessary – single role or multirole, fighter with bombs is a sitting duck unless pilot drops bombs, in which case it is a mission kill (except for the A-10, which has a big gun and a pilot who knows how to use it). However, whenever you use multirole aircraft, you always sacrifice something – sortie rate, cost per aircraft, cost per sortie, pilot proficiency, logistical footprint, or most typically, everything listed.

      “In the end, you’re right that single role platforms will lead to better cost/efficiency ratio for almost every mission you’re looking at, but you should not discount versatility as an asset, even at strategic level, for the one having “multirole” cards in his game.”

      I actually had an idea for a multirole FLX (see my air superiority fighter proposal 6 for a singlerole version). It would be a twin-seater variant of a basic FLX, with stronger airframe and ability to carry air-to-ground munitions. Main roles would be SEAD, DEAD and anti-shipping, but also other air-to-air and air-to-ground roles as necessary. However, a cadre of dedicated single-role pilots is necessary, especially in close air support, for developing and preserving tactics, strategies and other know-how – which they can then transfer to multirole community as needed.

      “Do you agree that in such (simplistic) situation, every ennemy movement observable on the radar gives huge hints about what the ennemy plans to do, or at least greatly reduces the possibilities?”

      This assumes that I can actually differentiate between various types in a jammed environment. Differentiation based on speed and altitude may be possible (and even that depends on type of jamming), but escort fighters will typically fly at same speed and altitude as bombers (or zig-zag, which does allow identification) while bombers will – during the last stage of flight – drop below radar horizon before making an attack run. Of course, once they do so, they give away their role, but this is no different from multirole fighters carrying bombs vs multirole fighters running escort. Without jamming, things are easier for the defenders, but basic problems still remain.

      “Take the same scenario but instead put same load of F16 C and i (or Rafales C), with mixed ordnance and crews, ”

      But different loads will mean different flying properties, which will still result in the situation similar to what you described with single-role fighters – with difference that multiroles are better able to defend themselves if jumped.

      “All this leads me to think the ideal structure would be mainly composed of single role platforms, ensuring a group of roles closely related, and then I’d have at least 20% of my fleet as multirole as possible (as credible as possible for the whole spectrum- ala Rafale) -volontary leaving CAS asside as we agree on that particularity.”

      That is, funny enough, similar to what I envisioned with my fighter designs later on. You can see them here:
      https://defenseissues.wordpress.com/2014/08/02/air-superiority-fighter-proposal-6/
      https://defenseissues.wordpress.com/2013/12/28/close-air-support-fighter-proposal-3/
      https://defenseissues.wordpress.com/2014/08/16/forward-air-controller-aircraft-proposal-revised/

      Basically, the idea was:
      FLX single seater: air superiority, combat air patrol, bomber interception, escort
      FLX twin seater: flight training, supression/destruction of enemy air defenses, low-altitude strike, maritime strike, reconnaissance
      ALX: close air support, battlefield interdiction, reconnaissance, airborne forward air control, maritime patrol, maritime strike, anti-submarine warfare, combat search and rescue
      OLX: airborne forward air control, counterinsurgency operations, reconnaissance, close air support, battlefield interdiction, combat search and rescue

      Unfortunately, I never got around to designing a twin-seater FLX (or rather I did, but didn’t manage to catch time to finish it beyond the basic layout).

      • “This assumes that I can actually differentiate between various types in a jammed environment.”

        -Well, this mostly assume that you can pinpoint the provenance of a detected vector. My exemple makes it quite easy (huge distance between only two airbases, ennemy won’t make its planes from base A fly ultra low level more than 1000km just to trick you into believing they’re taking off from base B), obviously in real world it might become increasingly difficult to assess correctly, depending of your intel capacity and whole geographic context etc. But the point of the exemple was more general (I could try and propose very different exemples where versatility of prepositioned platforms increase potential of surprise / saturate ennemy capacity to anticipate.) I think you got it. I’m not advocating multirole past this point, I’m just saying this point is a huge one (enough to weight at strategic level).

        “But different loads will mean different flying properties, which will still result in the situation similar to what you described with single-role fighters – with difference that multiroles are better able to defend themselves if jumped.”

        -It’s true but even if you can correctly classify airborne threat (which as you just reminded ain’t that easy) and assume its possible mission profiles from analysing its current fly enveloppe, then you’re probably out of time to react optimally. My precedent argument is a bit clumsy but I think it’s more because of me struggling to explain it, as it is quite straitforward in that caricatural exemple. (point being that single role makes you predictable, unless you’re able to deploy several types in every location, which is a logistical struggle and might even be impossible for small and rudimentary forward airbases.) Plus as you said multiroles are much more capables to defend themselves, and an attempt to mission-kill them can fail if only portion of the attackers (say two out of five- attack missions are always planned whith a margin) are forced to jettison and sudenly becomes pure fighters (although if the initial attack profile was low level then they’re in bad shape for the merge obviously.)

        “Basically, the idea was:
        FLX single seater: air superiority, combat air patrol, bomber interception, escort
        FLX twin seater: flight training, supression/destruction of enemy air defenses, low-altitude strike, maritime strike, reconnaissance
        ALX: close air support, battlefield interdiction, reconnaissance, airborne forward air control, maritime patrol, maritime strike, anti-submarine warfare, combat search and rescue
        OLX: airborne forward air control, counterinsurgency operations, reconnaissance, close air support, battlefield interdiction, combat search and rescue

        Unfortunately, I never got around to designing a twin-seater FLX (or rather I did, but didn’t manage to catch time to finish it beyond the basic layout).”

        -Yes, it looks good. However I’m uncomfortable with trusting you designs for the reason they don’t exist. We’re already playing quite wild whith all our assumptions based on estimations of existing platforms. Whilst all your designs share the strong point of avoiding over-complexity, and thus are more credibles than other utopies, that is no proof they’ll be working as planned. Look at the indian Tejas, as a development program it is a real pain in the ass, proportionaly not so far of the F-35 in terms of delays, budget control, respect of bill of specification… Yet as a proposed platform it was a very sane basis IMO (single seat light air superiority aircraft -FLX like if I may-). Desire of indigenous engine might have been an error, but the Kaveri struggles are not explaining the whole mess with that program. I really think the initial project was reasonable in terms of risk management, yet it turned to fiasco because of other factors, political, industrial (mainly), economical, human (always).

        About the twin-seater FLX, does it retain the gun? Have you got into enough details of the single seat one to know what you’ll have to move/compromise to make it a tandem seat? IMO if it does keep the gun it’s still eligible for air superiority missions (whith a light handicap in term of fuel). Can still do air policing, point defence etc at least.

        • “(point being that single role makes you predictable, unless you’re able to deploy several types in every location, which is a logistical struggle and might even be impossible for small and rudimentary forward airbases.)”

          Multirole fighters may not even be able to deploy from rudimentary air bases at all due to increased weight and complexity necessary to perform multiple missions. And those that do will still be constrained in terms of combat ability, range, sortie rate and missions compared to their single-role counterparts.

          “-Yes, it looks good. However I’m uncomfortable with trusting you designs for the reason they don’t exist.”

          Neither does the F-35-as-envisioned, neither do the air superiority UCAV that USAF is hoping will avert self-imposed death spiral… but what matters here are concepts, I’m just using my designs to illustrate concepts they represent.

          “We’re already playing quite wild whith all our assumptions based on estimations of existing platforms. Whilst all your designs share the strong point of avoiding over-complexity, and thus are more credibles than other utopies, that is no proof they’ll be working as planned.”

          Agreed, a lot depends on the design process, politics and so on. Even the best concept can be brought down by incompetent management, although there are ways to avoid that. If you haven’t, I suggest you read the interview Harry Hillaker gave for Code One magazine – there is a link to it on this site.

          “About the twin-seater FLX, does it retain the gun? Have you got into enough details of the single seat one to know what you’ll have to move/compromise to make it a tandem seat?”

          Twin seater will likely have to have somewhat longer forebody (which will make it more stable due to C(g) shift relative to C(l) – ideal for ground attack platform, not so for an air superiority fighter), but seeing how gun is positioned very far aft, I don’t think it will be necessary to remove it. It will also have to have reinforced airframe and consequently higher empty weight, unless bombs are either very lightweight or carried on three “wet” points avaliable. An additional hardpoint(s) for targeting pod(s) may be necessary, but if so, they can be placed under air intakes.

          That being said, even such a redesign would require a major effort (basically, I would need to calculate everything anew – weight, fuel capacity, combat radius etc.), several weeks to several months work, so I won’t be doing it anytime soon.

          “IMO if it does keep the gun it’s still eligible for air superiority missions (whith a light handicap in term of fuel). Can still do air policing, point defence etc at least.”

          Agreed, and it could also be used as an emergency controller as well – for both single-seater FLXs and UCAVs.

  5. Oh well, I’m going to say it: This article is excellent!

    I wanted to ask you about this claim, though: “United States in Iraq and Afghanistan relied on firepower and numbers to deal with insurgents.”

    My understanding was that the number of troops assigned to the occupation of Iraq (I don’t know about Afghanistan) was about a third of what the military advisors were seeking and had calculated would be necessary to ensure order, but they were over-ruled by Cheney and Rumsfeld. This has been touted as a major reason why the insurgency was able to get so big: there weren’t enough soldiers suppressing it (not to mention that the Iraqi army had been disbanded, throwing more fuel onto the fire with many thousands of disgruntled men now out of a job but with some training in the use of firearms).

    (there are also different interpretations about why the necons chose to do what they did in the way that they did. One is that they were simply high on their own hubris and propaganda, and thus really believed that they would be hailed as liberators by the entire Iraqi population, and that their neoliberal shock therapy, of which “de-Baathification” was a component, was a safe bet. A second possibility is that these guys were seduced by technology and the elegance of their “shock and awe” doctrine and thus thought that there was no way that they could get bogged down since the population would be too intimidated and bewildered to mount a resistance. A third, and much darker, possibility is that the neocons deliberately did conducted the war in this way in order to set up an “atrocity-producing situation” in which soldiers would be consistently placed into circumstances where killing large numbers of civilians became inevitable, as a means of conducting a genocide against the Iraqi people. In this scenario, winning the war in the sense that you and I would understand “winning” wasn’t the objective; rather, fighting the war was the objective, as a fig-leaf for genocide. There’s a website called ongenocide.com which details this scenario in a number of wars, most notably Korea, Indochina and Iraq)

    On an unrelated note, have you considered writing an article about LPI radar?

    • “My understanding was that the number of troops assigned to the occupation of Iraq (I don’t know about Afghanistan) was about a third of what the military advisors were seeking and had calculated would be necessary to ensure order, but they were over-ruled by Cheney and Rumsfeld.”

      That is correct, as far as regular troops were concerned. But Cheney and Rumsfeld were neoliberal corporatists (and also capitalists who stood to gain a lot from invasion of Iraq). Using large number of government *anything* was going against their most deeply ingrained beliefs. So while number of US military troops assigned to Iraq was low, number of mercenary (a.k.a. PMC) troops was enormous – at times far larger than that of actual military forces. And it caused a lot of trouble too, I’ll just direct you to this article:
      http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2007/aug/01/military.usa

      Most of the times, their conduct was more like that of pirates or rabid dogs than that of military personnel. And Blackwater PMC is larger than Croatian military yet is, by all definitions, a criminal organization. Instead of trying to create connections with the locals – something that regular military forces tried (from time to time at least) and were partly successful at – PMCs destroyed any efforts at such connecting through their conduct. Basically, instead of bolstering the US military, they bolstered the insurgency by providing a steady stream of recruits – kinda like drone strikes.

      Lesson of the day: if you want a war properly done, do not give it to mercenaries.

      “there are also different interpretations about why the necons chose to do what they did in the way that they did.”

      Second and third ones are correct. Neocons used “shock and awe” to “shock” the Iraqi populace into submission, which they could then use to mount a crash-course privatization of Iraq. And once that was done, rising resistance movement was an excellent opportunity to get some money into private pockets – both MIC and PMC. Do you know that US private military contractors never left Iraq?

      Genocide was not an objective, it was only an accidental side-effect. Objective was profit. But part of that was culturocide: that is, destruction of the Iraqi culture. Hence why United States allowed Iraqi museums etc. to be plundered or destroyed. And why destroy the culture? To replace it with Western (American) neoliberal work-till-you-drop, fast-food culture.

      “On an unrelated note, have you considered writing an article about LPI radar?”

      Yes, but I left it for later (have an entire queue of articles waiting to be written).

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