first published on December 15, 2017 by Will
As much as I want to hate the F-35, this stunning video showing the Royal Netherlands Air Force putting on a show makes me all tingly inside.
The video and stills, recorded by Dafydd Phillips Photography, shows two Royal Netherlands Joint Strike Fighter F-35A Lightening II aircraft buzzing just over the media personnel’s heads. The footage was taken in the California desert in December 2017, and it is suggested that you manually ensure that the video resolution is at its fullest.
The Netherlands was actually one of the original nine partner nations of the Joint Strike Fighter development program and is the second international recipient of the aircraft. Because of their dedication to F-35 Global Support Solution, the United States Department of Defense has selected the Netherlands to operate the warehouse for parts and production teams for the European nations operating the F-35 aircraft.
“The F-35 global support enterprise continues to grow and expand. This initial warehousing assignment is one of many opportunities we will have to assign sustainment solutions for the F-35 enterprise,” Vice Admiral Mat Winter, F-35 Program Executive Officer said. “As international F-35 deliveries increase and operations expand, support provided by our international F-35 users becomes more and more critical. We will continue to make well-informed, best-value decisions to create an effective and efficient global sustainment system for the F-35 fleet.”
The Joint Strike Fighter was declared militarily operational by the Marine Corps in July 2015, but it was plagued by years of setbacks, including an advanced helmet system that didn’t work and chronic engine fires that repeatedly grounded the aircraft. It was behind schedule, well over budget, and many said it wasn’t maneuverable and wasn’t capable of carrying enough munitions due to the shape of the VTOL feature that was only available in the F-35B variant, but effected the basic fuselage design of all variants.
The Canadians, who initially intended to procure the JSF, backed out of the deal to buy the more practical F/A-18 Super Hornets, but recently had legal differences with Boeing. They have now decided to buy Australia’s aged fleet of F-18 Hornets to fatten their own aging fleet of CF-18s, stating that they are cheap, and Canada already knows how to fly them, while having replacement parts production facilities in place.
Whether you hate or love the F-35 JSF, it’s here, and many of our most powerful allies went all in on it as well. So just shut up and enjoy this awesome video.