End of Week – Extra Edition

Blog Post


Missile Madness

There are significant problems with the performance of Russian cruise missiles. (USNI) h/t Claudio. The Russians are lobbing a lot of ground attack missiles into Ukraine.

On 25 March, the Pentagon confirmed press reports that various Russian missiles were experiencing failure rates of 20 to 60 percent (failure was defined as the inability to launch or hit the target) with “cruise missiles, particularly air-launched cruise missiles” having the lowest kill rates. Reportedly, some missiles did not explode even when they hit their targets. Thus, in addition to the reliability and quality control problems with the missiles, they apparently have a fusing problem.

On 10 May, the Pentagon confirmed that Russia had depleted its missile inventory and that it was “running through their precision-guided missiles at a pretty fast clip” and was “running the lowest on cruise missiles, particularly air-launched cruise missiles,” but Moscow still had more than 50 percent of its prewar inventory. Since then, missile use has continued, but at much-reduced rates.

In January 2022, U.S. Army Chief of Staff General James McConville said that Russian hypersonic missiles were not a game changer because, “I have not seen them actually hit a target with that system.”


Scorpions – For Fun and Profit!

Are you ready for the Russo-Ukraine War to wind down? It might be because we have a new proxy war brewing in Africa and it could run out for decades if we play our military-industrial cards right.

The stage is set for military conflict in Africa. Following Niger’s coup d’état that ousted president Mohamed Bazoum, France and the Western community are backing the Economic Community of West African States, which issued an ultimatum to the coup junta, threatening military action as the last resort. So far, Nigeria, Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire, and Benin have confirmed their readiness to take part in the intervention.

Finally, the US Africa Command (AFRICOM) has a mission. A low-intensity conflict that can be milked for all it’s worth!  I called a friend at Sierra Nevada Corp. and the Pentagon ordered some. SNC Scorpions for immediate delivery in support of the new war. If you think. that it’s only a King Air, like a C-12, think again. There is also Textron light attack jet, also called a Scorpion,  that may be in the theater taking out targets – and that may be confusing. So many scorpions…in Africa.

The situation can be understood in the context of the fading French influence in the continent, while Russia has just concluded a summit with its many African partners, eyeing ever-growing ties in the region.


Clarkson Speaks


Another Map

How Does Your Region Rate? Or, “Are you doing your part?”


Density of Radiofrequency Antennas and Towers Across the US, 2002.



Musk on The Barbie Movie

25 thoughts on “End of Week – Extra Edition

  1. Drinking – that dark spot in south central Nebraska is probably what was once called Kearney State College(it was absorbed the university system out of Lincoln). Even when I was in high school that college was always high on the list of per capita drinking. Scorpions side note – when my son was stationed in the Middle East his unit adopted several scorpions as pets.

    1. I have one that ended up encased in clear lucite and then as a gearshift knob on my Toyota FJ (The Scorpion)

    1. Shameless name drop. Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. was started in 1979 by homebrewers Ken Grossman and Paul Camus in Chico, CA. I used to shoot on a local pistol team with Paul.

        1. I suppose if you live long enough, it’s hard not to. Bits and pieces just seem to accumulate. Back then it was all just part of the local scene in Chico.

      1. Spent 4 years at Minot AFB. The summers were no picnic, either. As hot in summer as it is cold in winter.

    1. I work remotely for a Mississippi company and one time our service tech had to go work on a machine in a small town in Nor-Dakoter in January and that Southern boy was definitely a fish out of water up there and a frozen one at that, it being well below zero at the time. He asks the waitress at the local cafe, what do you people do in the winter up here and she said “drink.”

    2. Like living inside The Fray…those desolate scenes in the beginning then the bar scene where every goofball tough guy is drinking too much looking to blow off steam. Yeah, no thanks.

      But, if I were a younger guy…could make some serious bank in 10 years if he didn’t run to town every Friday and blow it all but invested it in himself. Be worth the struggle…then buy a secluded spot on an island with a hut and skiff.

  2. I wish LL the best playing so many sides against each other in the new African war. Africa always wins; its people always lose. I do not foresee the Ukraine war winding down. Slow down due to attrition of people and supplies though not ending and no lessening of expenditures. I do not see how either administration can now forgive and forget and remain in power.

  3. Let’s see…hmmm…not sure…Oppenheimer……or……Barbie?

    Since I don’t identify as a 12 year-old girl, gotta be the former.

    Then of course with the requisite studio marketing push, headline story is how Ryan Reynolds trained to get his 6-pack abs to portray Ken..including video. Seriously, can Hollywood get any less creative and paper thin?

    Now, if the line up was Oppenheimer and M:I 7 I’d be at the theater twice in one day…later in the evening rewatch Maverick to round out the day.

  4. Spent 28 years as a nuclear weapons tech in the AF. It would have to be Oppenheimer.

    Africa. We have been going there in force for years. I guess now it has to be formalized to make it “official” so we can spend more money. Less of course the obligatory 10%.

    1. I spent 3 days in late Spring 1993 with Dr. Edward Teller. It’s a long story but oddly enough, Teller took a liking to me, and that liking elevated me to “Teller’s friend” status for the duration of the three-day thing. That’s as close as I got to a hydrogen bomb but it’s one of those moments in my life that I will never forget and remember with significant clarity.

      1. When the AF was buying the Peacekeeper I used to go to Livermore quite often for W 87 program management reviews back in the mid 80s. I got to see Dr. Teller across a room but that was about it. The meetings were an odd mixture of listening to people who were orders of magnitude smarter than I am and not having a lick of common sense. For example PHD engineer proudly telling me the electrical connector he designed has the highest pin density in the DOD thinking that was a good thing when I was thinking that some hung over Airman is going to try and connect that thing and make a total hash of it.

  5. Btw, Clarkson is spot on…re: the Prius. Symbolism over substance marketing to the willfully ignorant and boring. Besides the fact the design is uglier than hammered dog…

      1. Hybrids are kinda dumb, but orders of magnitude less dumb than electrics.


        1. People are allowed their folly; EV, Hybrid, Petrol…little runabout, sedan, SUV, or pickup…who cares. The problem is we have the moronic 2% telling the 98% that we’re the problem and should conform to their idiocy.

  6. US Africom command is in Stuttgart Germany. I never understood the logic of locating it there.

    1. There isn’t anyplace in Africa where the generals, the gilded staff, and their families feel safe. Stuttgart is a beautiful place, very civilized. Who wouldn’t want to live there. And more to the point, who would want to live in Africa.

  7. Running out of missiles, you say? Poor quality control? Doesn’t surprise me. Forensic analysis of some of the electronic hybrids modules revealed all kinds of trash sealed inside. Flakes of woman’s make-up, eyelashes, bits of skin, cigarette particles, and oyher stuff. It was just laughable.

    The Scorpion sounds like a competent, capable little airplane. We had a “Fighter Mafia” that brought us great design philosophies, maybe it’s time far an “Air-ti-Ground Mafia”?

    There’s some pretty “interesting” versions of the King Air.

    The density of RF Towers would bear a little looking into. Looks like he used just about every licensed RF emitter out there!

    Musk speaks his mind, and pulls no punches.

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