The Joint Strike Fighter F-35 is not only the most expensive plane in history. It’s also one of the weirdest and least successful projects ever by the U.S. military-industrial complex.And this.
Its development cost more than $400 billion and went years over schedule. Worst of all, many doubt not only the need for it but its actual capabilities. A Pentagon report published six months ago casts doubt on its performance and the incentives its manufacturer, Lockheed Martin, was given to fix its flaws.
Meanwhile, the Israeli political system is preoccupied with U.S. military aid – a topic presented as being of the utmost political and economic importance. Supporters and detractors on both the left and right paint a simplistic picture of Israel generally looking for as much as possible, while the United States uses the aid as a bargaining chip to advance its interests in the Middle East.
Does Israel really need F-35s? How much will it really cost the Israeli taxpayer? What are its real abilities? Does the IAF need the huge number of planes ordered, which is greater than the number of jets that all our enemies together, real and imaginary, could field? Doesn’t the advance in drone technology – pilotless aircraft – demand that vast investment by Israel in piloted planes be reduced?Story here.
Nobody seems to be looking at these questions. The Stealth may be expensive, superfluous and half-baked. But in one area it has proved itself beyond doubt: in its ability to evade serious public debate on its price and usefulness.