An F-35 fighter jet takes off for a training mission at Hill Air Force Base in Ogden, Utah on March 15, 2017. (Photo by AFP)
TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) - Israel says it has finalized a deal to buy another batch of F-35 warplanes from the US, and is to become only the second military in the world to have an operational squadron of the warplanes aside from the US itself.
Israel’s ministry for military affairs announced the conclusion of the accord for 17 more "stealth fighters" on Sunday, coming in line with US policy of ensuring Tel Aviv's "qualitative military edge" in the Middle East.
The regime has already ordered 33 of the world’s most expensive fighter jets. Of these, it has received five aircraft so far, and will render a full-fledged squadron airworthy by yearend.
The aircraft, which are manufactured by US-based Lockheed Martin, are said to have fundamental design flaws that could vex the F-35 for decades to come.
The Pentagon says the fighter is fitted with state-of-the-art radar evasion capability, and enabled with supersonic travel at Mach 1.6 (around 1,900 kilometers per hour), while the pilot can avail himself of thermal, night, and 360-degree vision.
The US, Israel’s oldest and most faithful ally, contributes more than $2 billion to the occupying regime in the form of military aid each year.
It sold Tel Aviv the first 33 warplanes at $110 million each, but offered a relative discount of $10 million on every plane of the second batch.
Washington is accused of pumping exorbitant amounts of cash into the Israeli military as a means of building the regime into an ultimate vehicle of implementing and policing its policies in the Middle East.
Israeli airplanes routinely violate the Lebanese airspace and carry out bombings inside Syria against government forces and their allies. Tel Aviv has also threatened on numerous occasions to bomb Iran's nuclear energy facilities, drawing warnings of an all-out retaliation from Tehran.