Military aviation, Part II

of the planned fleet of 132 was ever built.” On 5 October 2009, Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition Ashton Carter said that the DoD was still deciding if the USAF needed a new bomber and that, if approved, the aircraft would need to handle reconnaissance as well as strike missions. In July 2010, Carter said he intended to “make affordability a requirement” for the next-generation intelligence and strike platform.

On 11 December 2009, Gates said that the QDR had shown the need for both manned and unmanned long range strike and that the 2011 budget would likely include funding for the future bomber. The USAF plans for the new bomber to be multi-role with intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities. As a bomber, the LRS-B will be under Air Force Global Strike Command, while ISR assets are managed by Air Combat Command’s 25th Air Force.

In 2010, Andrew Krepinevich, director of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, questioned a reliance on short range aircraft like the F-35 to manage China in a future conflict and promoted reducing the F-35 buy in favor of a longer range platform like the Next-Generation Bomber; then-United States Secretary of the Air Force M