opinion column in AW&ST last week, senior international defense editor Bill Sweetman, referred to ’s criticism of a Rand Corp. report that concludes the Joint Strike Fighter program would cost more than the total of three separate fighters. Sweetman says “wobbly numbers” are warping the F-35 debate and “irreversible decisions are close at hand” for Pentagon leaders, resulting in other programs, including upgrades and the line, being sacrificed to pay the bill.Writing an
Lexington Institute analyst Loren Thompson offers another perspective in a Viewpoint that will appear in the Jan. 27 edition of AW&ST. He says the JSF program is “looking unstoppable.” Thompson believes that politicians and pundits do not fully understand the F-35’s price tag and argues that the “F/A-18E and F-35C have nearly identical unit production costs at the same stages in their evolution.” Read his viewpoint here.
And now we ask our readers: What do you think? Please weigh in.