BAGHDAD - The V-22 Osprey has arrived in a combat zone for the first time.
It was an epic trip for the tilt-rotor plane, one that took more than 25 years of development and cost 30 lives and $20 billion. Even the last short hop - from an aircraft carrier into Iraq - went awry, U.S. military officials said yesterday.
A malfunction forced one of the 10 Ospreys that were deployed to land in Jordan on Thursday. The Marines flew parts to it from Iraq and repaired it. After it took off again Saturday, the problem recurred, and it had to turn back and land in Jordan a second time, said Maj. Jeff Pool, a U.S. military spokesman in western Iraq. The Osprey finally was repaired and arrived at Asad air base in western Iraq late Sunday afternoon.
Maj. Eric Dent, an Osprey spokesman at Marine headquarters in Washington, declined to identify the problem.
"The nature of the malfunction was a minor issue, but our aircrews are top-notch when it comes to safety," Dent said in an e-mail. "Rather than continue, the aircrew opted to land at a predetermined divert location and further investigate the issue." -- philly.com
Yes.... uhm... "predetermined divert location", yes, its called the ground.
When is congress going to stand up to the Pentagon and put a stop to this death trap?
How many missions will this endanger in country? You can be sure no one will want to have this aircraft provide support for their operation. You can't trust it to be able to safely extract you or your men. I wouldn't fly in the thing and our soldiers shouldn't be forced to.