^btw: the “purpose” of the F-22, and now F-35 is to get within 100 miles of the target aircraft, and launch a missile. The Chinese air force has enough aircraft to run ours out of missiles, and proceed, because the “engineers” say we don’t really need to install guns on “interceptor aircraft” any more.
I had a great photograph of an F-4 “old smokie” (that someone stole from my locker when I was once reported KIA) that was GREAT, as this Marine had just dropped a rack of napalm to land behind me at just the right spot, just in time. Yes, it was a viable “cross purpose” machine in the right hands. but I still see the A-10 as my favorite to support our ground pounders.