Comment (Flight International, 4-10 November) gave me a feeling of deja vu. I remember the 1950s UK minister Duncan Sandys stating that manned combat aircraft were at an end, but fortunately we ended up with the MRCA, which became the Panavia Tornado. First, missiles were to replace aeroplanes, now it is to be unmanned air vehicles.
It is up to governments to fund design projects and keep skilled design teams together. Decisions about defence should not be made largely on commercial grounds. There are serious limits to the capabilities of unmanned vehicles, especially if the datalink is broken, jammed or corrupted.
There is still room for the Mk1 eyeball in modern war.
S G Stott
Thornton Heath, Surrey, UK
Source: Flight International