Senator David Perdue Statement On Temporary Grounding Of Four JSTARS

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator David Perdue (R-GA), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement about the grounding of four Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) planes, critical surveillance assets based at Robins Air Force Base in Warner Robins, Georgia:

“JSTARS is the premier battle-management command and control asset used in theater today and for the foreseeable future. Although the safety concerns with the aircraft have been remedied, the decision by General Pawlikowski to ground these four planes is a reminder that our troops need a swift and effective recapitalization of the JSTARS fleet.

“Our JSTARS planes are over 60 years old and under the current recapitalization plan, our Combatant Commanders would face a service gap that could last anywhere between four to eight years. Soon, the fleet will not be able to properly fulfill their missions and their absence will put our women and men in uniform unnecessarily in harm’s way.

“This is yet another illustration that our national debt crisis and global security crisis are interlocked inextricably. Until we solve this national debt crisis, our military will not have the training and equipment they need to fulfill their missions and face growing threats. It’s time that Washington faces up to both crises.”

Senator Perdue is in constant communication with our military leaders and Team JSTARS about the needs of their critical missions. During debate of the Fiscal Year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), Senator Perdue and Senator Isakson offered two amendments to ensure JSTARS is maintained as a national defense priority.

Additionally, Senator Perdue and Senator Isakson published an opinion piece in Real Clear Defense to emphasize the importance of JSTARS and urge the Pentagon to fully support the fleet’s recapitalization.