Armed Forces News

The Defense Department will pay $5.57 billion for 74 more F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, the Washington Post reported July 11. The total purchase will involve 141 planes, but 50 of them will go to foreign militaries, the Post reported, citing the Pentagon’s Joint Program Office and Lockheed Martin Corp., the prime contractor. The move drew support from the F-35’s proponents, which cite the extension as evidence that the plane’s legacy of cost overruns, program delays, and questions about its reliability are a thing of the past. Critics, however, are still concerned that there is still no clear idea of what each F-35 will cost, and whether its expense can be justified.