Our reader forwards a blurb from the AP which reports that the Osprey has been getting into some bang bang during some of its insertions of Marines, with Cobras swooping in for the kill as RPGs and small arms zing by.
"insurgents tried but failed to bring down an Osprey aircraft with rocket-propelled grenades as Cobra attack helicopters fired missiles at enemy positions, including a machine gun bunker"I'll work to flesh this out with my sources, but it doesn't surprise me that given the combat environment in Afghanistan as opposed to Iraq when it was first deployed, the Osprey is finally proving it can handle the stress of the real thing. Critics claimed the Corps was holding back in Iraq, keeping its fragile new toy from the fray. But by the time the Osprey got to Iraq, a lot of the hardcore combat had ended, and the pricey plane was used for lots and lots of admin flights.
Afghanistan has proven completely different, with the Osprey finding itself in a pretty heated combat environment from the start.
I haven't seen any footage of Ospreys in the fight, but I'll keep my eyes open. If you all come across any, let me know on the Tip Line.