A post on the Lexington Institute’s Early Warning blog argues that political support for the F-35 program is growing. Recently, previous skeptic Sen. John McCain expressed support, and now General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, gives an enthusiastic endorsement of the program.
From the post by Loren Thompson:
Now comes additional praise from the nation’s top military officer, Joint Chiefs Chairman General Martin Dempsey. A self-described “ground-pounder” (soldier), Dempsey told members of the Senate Armed Services Committee last week that he was “open-minded” on the fate of the F-35 until he talked to a Marine officer running one of the first operational squadrons of F-35s at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. Dempsey said that conversation about the plane’s performance turned him into an advocate. And then he put his finger on what may be the most important reason for buying the F-35: “We haven’t been attacked from the air since April 15, 1953, and I’m not going to be the chairman on whose watch… that’s reversed.”