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Air Force Squanders Millions in Pilot Training Expenses With Vaccine Mandate Expulsions: Lawyer

Neil Campbell
Neil lives in Canada and writes about society and politics.
Published: April 11, 2022
Kris Kobach says the USAF is wasting tens of millions invested in pilot training expenses by almost universally denying pilots religious exemptions to COVID-19 vaccination.
Former Kansas Secretary of State and gubernatorial candidate Kris Kobach speaks at a rally with former President Donald Trump at the Kansas Expocenter on October 6, 2018 in Topeka, Kansas. Kobach, who represents 36 members of the U.S. Air Force in a lawsuit centered around a nearly universal denial of religious exemptions for COVID-19 vaccination, estimates tens of millions of dollars in invested training expenses are being squandered by the policy. (Image: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

The U.S. Air Force is squandering millions of taxpayer dollars invested in training pilots by way of a mandatory vaccination policy that almost universally denies religious exemptions, expelling non-acceptors from its ranks. 

The comments were made by Kris Kobach, a Kansas-based attorney representing 36 members of the Air Force, the Reserve, and the National Guard in a lawsuit against the Biden administration centered around the Air Force’s almost-blanket denial of religious exemptions. 

The Epoch Times reported that according to the text of pleadings in the suit, the plaintiffs state that as of March 15, the Air Force had denied 5,259 religious exemption requests, accepting just 23 or less than 1 in 200.

High cost and low supply

Kobach, former Kansas Secretary of State and current contender for the Kansas Attorney General position, told the outlet that 17 of the 36 members of his suit were pilots, representing an aggregate $93.5 million in taxpayer investment, according to estimates made in a 2019 Rand Corporation report assessing the cost-effectiveness of retaining versus replacing pilots.


The Rand report estimated the cost of “training a basic qualified fighter pilot” could range from $5.6 million for an F-16 pilot to $10.9 million for an F-22 pilot.

Those figures ranged from $7.3 to $9.7 million to train B-class bomber pilots, $5.5 million to train RC-class reconnaissance pilots, and $1.1 to $2.5 million for C-class transport pilots.

The lawsuit, filed in March, represents 36 individuals, mostly located at the Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha and the McConnell Air Force Base in Texas.

Kobach told The Epoch Times that “Most of them are very senior pilots, and the notion that we would fire these pilots that the United States has invested tens of millions of dollars in, is just outrageous.”

“There are a couple from Texas who are full-time instructor pilots and the commander at that base is complaining that we aren’t training enough pilots fast enough, yet the military is forcing the removal of highly experienced, highly trained pilots and forcing the removal of the instructors who would train new pilots,” he added. 

“It’s just nonsense to do this. The military, in the name of readiness, is destroying its own readiness.”

The Rand report noted, based on data from the USAF Military Personnel Data System from 2008 to 2017 that the median quantity of fighter pilots in its ranks was a mere 3,050.

Data also showed that the Air Force contained an average of only 815 transport pilots, 1,020 reconnaissance pilots, and 5,638 bomber pilots.

In a March 8 op-ed published in Breitbart, Kobach stated most of the 17 pilots in his lawsuit “fly the RC-135 reconnaissance aircraft out of Nebraska or the KC-135 refueling aircraft out of Kansas.”


The Epoch Times noted that plaintiffs objected to the novel Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines on the basis of their utilizing gene therapy messenger RNA technology, which they say produces doctrinal conflicts around taking substances that modify the God-given functions of the human body.

Unlike conventional inactivated virus vaccines that expose the human body to an antigen by utilizing a weakened and/or sterilized form of a virus to stimulate an immune response, both the mRNA injections by Pfizer and Moderna and the adenovirus vector offerings by Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca employ gene therapy techniques.

In mRNA vaccines, an external genetic instruction is encapsulated in a lipid nanoparticle, which is a man-made fat, and deployed to cells in the human body.

In adenovirus vector varieties, a sterilized adenovirus is genetically modified to contain a double-stranded DNA instruction deployed to human cells.

Both approaches force human cells to directly grow the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, on their surfaces.

A study published in the journal Viruses in October of 2021 by Chinese researchers employed at Sweden’s Umea University found that the full-length SARS-CoV-2 spike protein possess a characteristic causing it to amass in the cell nucleus, causing havoc with the human body’s adaptive immunity and the DNA’s V(D)J recombination repair systems. 

The researchers noted that the problem exists with exposure to the virus itself, but astutely raised concerns surrounding vaccine exposure when they stated, “Many approved SARS–CoV–2 vaccines, such as mRNA vaccines and adenovirus–COVID–19 vaccines, have been developed based on the full–length spike protein.”

A second layer of objection that Plaintiffs espouse stems from the use of aborted fetal cell lines in vaccine development. 

In the case of Pfizer-BioNTech’s offering, leaked emails obtained by investigative journalism team Project Veritas in October of 2021 from Pfizer’s Senior Director of Worldwide Research, Development and Medical Communication, Vanessa Gelman, and Philip Dormitzer, Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer of Viral Vaccines, confirmed this fact as true. 

While Gelman was advising an internal employee on how to run damage control on an external question about whether COVID vaccines were developed using aborted fetal cells, she admitted, “One or more cell lines with an origin that can be traced back to human fetal tissue has been used in laboratory tests associated with the vaccine program.”

Later in the chain, Dormitzer weighed in to confirm that “HEK293T [Human Embryonic Kidney] cells, used for the IVE assay, are ultimately derived from an aborted fetus.”

Dormitzer stated that it was okay, however, because, “On the other had, the Vatican doctrinal committee has confirmed that they consider it acceptable for Pro-Life believers to be immunized.”

First Amendment rights

Kobach told Epoch Times that, in his opinion, the First Amendment “does not allow governments to deny someone free exercise of their religious faith,” specifically “if they treat a comparable secular activity better than the religious activity.”

What Kobach refers to is that compared to the 23 religious exemptions approved by the Air Force, the pleadings in his case state that at least 3,781 administrative or medical exemptions have received approval.

Kobach went further in his Breitbart op-ed, “The military claims that near-universal vaccination is necessary for force readiness. But that too has been proven false.” 

“All of the airmen in the lawsuit have been able to continue doing their work for the past two years, using weekly testing or other means of minimizing COVID-19 risks. Indeed, two of the airmen in the suit have been deployed despite their unvaccinated status, without any impairment of their service.”