When it comes to roles and requirements the ‘fightiness’ diagram is useful, again.
Small, relatively low tech air forces in Africa may well require all of them but at a level significantly lower than more advanced forces.
A more detailed view of potential roles is described below;
Is the Royal Jordanian Air Force going to be conducting airborne early warning or the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (Air Component) going to be conducting deep attack, unlikely.
Both still would aspire to mobility, situational awareness, and control of the air and attack at a lower level though.
In addition, roles in the ‘safety and security’ areas would contribute significantly to security and stability, counter poaching and illegal fishing for example, both of which have major implications for national and regional stability and security.
Typical roles might include;
- Training and logistic support,
- Air transport and despatch,
- Surveillance and reconnaissance,
- Air interdiction and close air support.
I have left out missions such as airspace battle management, air superiority and counter air defence missions because of their inherent complexity. This assumes that those nations in receipt of such support from the UK would use it for counter piracy, poaching and fisheries protection, counter insurgency and humanitarian support in an environment where Mig 29’s were not the principle threat.
We have to be realistic.
Neither is this a proposal to create a neatly boxed off self-contained unit, it is about a collection of people and equipment that can be tailored for the needs of sustaining a deployed training and mentoring capability with varying levels of support, a modular capability of you will.