The U.S. Air Force Has Made A Decision On The F-35
Lockheed-Martin’s F-35 development program began in 2001 and since then it has faced delays, software malfunctions, safety issues as well as an overrun budget of roughly $1.5 trillion. Despite the harsh criticisms, errors and excessive price tag, the United States Air Force has made an announcement. The first squadron of F-35A fighter jets is now combat-ready. This news comes after an F-35 successfully destroyed an aerial drone using an AIM-9X missile in an air-to-air kill test at Edwards Air Force Base.
“The U.S. Air Force decision to make the 15 F-35As combat ready sends a simple and powerful message to America’s friends and foes alike – the F-35 can do its mission.”
– Air Force Lieutenant General Chris Bogdan
One of the three variants of the F-35 have been approved for combat use as the program continues testing. Although the F-35As are able to deploy anywhere in the world, consequently the United States Government will not be sending the fighter to combat ISIS in the Middle East until early 2017. The first operational squadron of 15 F-35 fighters will lead the charge in addition to the 1,700 units the United States plans to order in the coming years. The F-35A is finally ready but the Government has no immediate plans to use them, so is it really worth the investment?