I thought the only thing they had in Vermont was Ben and Jerry’s, maple syrup, and the Green Mountain Boys. But soon the quaint covered bridges of the state will be rattled by F-35 joint strike fighter afterburners if Senator Patrick Leahy finally gets his way. The rest of the congressional delegation is on board too.
But the weapons system is in real trouble. Why? Because it doesn’t work. It’s terribly over budget. Prospective buyers are backing out. And it’s way behind schedule.
In January, the Lockheed Martin production facility in Fort Worth, Texas, reported it was well along “in the final phase of building the wings” of the 100th F-35 constructed by the Bethesda, Maryland, company. Of the first 99 F-35s, none are yet operational.
The F-35 isn’t even close to fully operational – it can fly only on sunny days. It can’t fly at night. And it can’t fly in clouds or near lightning. We know this because the Pentagon tells us so, in a report written for the Secretary of Defense by the Director of Operational Test and Evaluation, J. Michael Gilmore, dated February 15, 2013.
It is worth noting that Lockheed (1/2 of Lockheed-Martin which is building the F-35) was bailed out in 1971, the first big bailout in America.