F-35: The World’s Best Fighter? Hell Yes
The decisions by two “holdout” major Western powers, Germany and Canada, to acquire the F-35 leaves no doubt regarding the unique contributions that this aircraft can make to both national and NATO security. Multiple analyses and flyoffs by these two countries and others have ended with the same conclusion: the JSF is the best choice with respect to overall value, capability, price, and even maintainability for nations needing to modernize their tactical fighter fleets in the first half of the 21st century.
Canada was one of the original countries, along with the U.S., U.K., Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Italy, Australia, and Turkey, in the JSF consortium. Canada invested hundreds of millions in the development of the F-35 and has signed billions of dollars in industrial contracts. The original plan was for Canada to acquire nearly 100 F-35As to replace the Royal Canadian Air Force’s aging F/A-18s.
However, a new government in Ottawa headed by Justin Trudeau appeared to have buyer’s remorse and put the acquisition on hold in favor of an open competition. The results of that competition proved what more than a dozen countries around the world have concluded, which is that the JSF beats out all its potential rivals. The Canadian government’s official press release regarding its intention to acquire 88 F-35As made clear why the JSF was selected:
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