Ought, there is an old joke that the U.S. Air Force is a very expensive flying club, with bombs and missiles. The joke is intended to illustrate that the Air Force exists only to fly planes, not actually take and hold ground, secure real estate or win wars. It is, admittedly, an old joke, probably dating to 1947, and certainly not as true today. In the case of the Saudi Air Force however, it is damn true. Most all Saudi pilots are Saudi Princes of one flavor or another and the very favored ones fly the coolest toys.
They fly the shit out of their jets like rich boys with fast cars, and like rich boys with fast cars, they break shit alot. They may have alot of birds on paper, but the question is how many are truly mission ready at any given time? I only question this (and truthfully, will never get a straight answer) because it is well known that the Saudi's love to do the fun stuff, as they wore the barrels out on their M1 Abrams well in advance of the expected service life because they loved shooting the big guns. Engines and tracks were hardly worn at all, but the barrels were toast. Hell, it is more fun to blow shit up than drive around the desert right?
Further, I dont much give a flip what Obama says as long as he keeps the F-15 line open and trained folks employed. Hell, he could come right out and say the obvious, we are keeping the line open and people on the job simply because the Saudi's want to spend their money. We do not have enough F-22's, and if another major dust-up jumps off, we are gonna need new Eagles to deal with it.
"When the enemy is in range, so are you!" - Murphy
كافر & Proud