Why the F-35?

Paul Koring tries to figure out why we might need to buy the F-35. Interoperability with our allies? Using different planes didn’t keep NATO from bombing Libya. To intercept or shoot down a terrorist threat? Any fighter plane will do. To protect our Arctic sovereignty? Drones could do that. So when might we need a stealth fighter? If we plan on bombing Iran or going to war with China.

While Lockheed Martin’s F-35 – a so-called fifth-generation strike fighter – is far and away the best available choice for flying bombing runs against a first-rate adversary (think China) in heavily defended airspace full of missiles and modern warplanes, it would be overkill against “softer” targets like Libya.

In other news, the first few F-35s could cost $104 million each.