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Bombs got to be more and more like missiles (ie accurate, self-propelled, high weight/yeild-to-effectiveness raito). Much less need to carry 50k lbs and sprinkle it all in the general area in order to kill a target.
Targets got to be more and more like planes (ie small and close to your own dudes… “that tank”, “the guys behind that wall”). Much more need to respond and arrive *now*.
Hot shit electronics (laser targetting, radar jamming, etc) became available in pods, meaning an old platform without the space or wiring to upgrade internally can still carry it.
Suddenly an f16 is pretty well suited for the job.
For clarity’s sake, f16s did not originally have ground attack capability. They were adapted to that role over time.