Israel Strikes a Deal on the F-35

(Aviation Week) Alon Ben-David - The U.S. is not standing in the way of an Israeli requirement to install a 600-gal. detachable fuel tank to increase the F-35's range. Although the deployment would undermine the Joint Stealth Fighter's stealth benefit, "in some missions, you can fly nonstealthy part of the way and become stealthy as you enter the danger zone," explains the air force official, hinting at a potential confrontation with Iran. However, the fielding timeline for the JSF means it does not feature in any possible near-term Israeli plans to attack Iran's nuclear infrastructure. Israel is planning to develop for the JSF an air-to-air derivative of the Stunner missile. One threat it aims to neutralize is from "U.S.-made fighters equipped with advanced radars," says the Israeli air force source, hinting at the pending sale to Saudi Arabia of F-15s.

2010-08-31 07:20:58

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