The F-22 Raptor’s Retirement: A Reflection on American Air Power and Future Wars

Upgrade for the world’s top fighter jet

The retirement of the F-22 Raptor, after less than 30 years of service, has left many American air power observers feeling disappointed. However, it is not surprising that this modern fighter has been retired, as other American fighters, such as the Lockheed Martin F-16 and Boeing F-15, have been in service for 40 years or more with upgrades.

The decision to replace the F-22 says a lot about the Air Force’s anticipation of future wars and where they will take place. Specifically, over the vast western Pacific Ocean in case of a Chinese attack on Taiwan. The Air Force is developing a new warplane to replace the F-22, with the belief that it will be better suited for potential conflicts in the future.

The development process for the new warplane began long ago with the Advanced Tactical Fighter initiative in the 1980s and culminated in production ending in 2012. Despite its advanced features and superior performance, however, the F-22’s capabilities are tailored to a different era and conflict scenario than what the Air Force anticipates in

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