"... Nalls, who used to be a Harrier maintenance officer, knows that the Harrier won’t be as maintenance-free as his L-39, but he predicts it shouldn’t be as bad as a WWII bomber. Jet engines, he said, are simple, consisting of “a steel tube, a shaft, 10,000 razor blades all spinning in the same direction with a fire in the middle.” Not much maintenance is needed if air and fuel flows properly into the engine and no birds and debris are ingested. ..."
"For takeoff, if conditions are right, the Harrier can leap into the air vertically. But taking off horizontally is more efficient, and for every foot of roll the Harrier can carry an extra 56 pounds of fuel or payload."
Fuerza Aerea Argentina (FAA) was the country’s large, relatively modern, and capable air force, particularly when compared to the militaries of most midsized powers. The FAA possessed some frontline aircraft equal to any in the world—including Mirage III interceptors. During the previous decade, they had acquired Israeli-made Mirage 5 fighters (called Daggers), which can operate at Mach 2 and are effective in both the air-to-air and strike roles. The naval air arm was in the process of acquiring a squadron of Super Etendard fighters from France. The primary attack aircraft of both the FAA and navy were several dozen A-4 Skyhawks that had been bought as surplus from the US Navy in 1972. The A-4s were old (built in the 1960s) but still very capable. In 1982 they were still used by many air forces (including the US Marine Corps) and were appreciated for their agility, toughness, and accuracy as dive-bombers. The latter was important. Unlike their British opponents, the Argentinians had no precision-guided bomb capability and required skilled pilots and accurate aircraft to hit targets with their “dumb bombs.”4
The FAA also possessed eight old Canberra bombers, a small transport force, and several squadrons of IA-58 Pucaras. The Pucara was the pride of the Argentine aircraft industry—designed and manufactured in Argentina. It was a twin-engine turboprop attack aircraft built for counterinsurgency work. It could mount a 30 mm cannon and carry a variety of bombs. It was slow but rugged and had the advantage of being able to operate from small, rough airstrips. The naval air arm also had some Aermacchi 339 jet trainers––small aircraft that could be configured as light strike fighters. The pilots of both the FAA and naval air arm were well trained, and the two services had good base infrastructure and maintenance capabilities that could effectively repair and maintain the aircraft.5
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