The US Navy needs $ 206 million to find suppliers of a number of components for the fifth-generation F-35 Lightning II fighter because of the “potential application of sanctions” to some foreign countries, the Pentagon budget request for fiscal year 2019 says.
According to The Drive, we are talking about replacing Turkish manufacturers of parts for the aircraft. The American publication draws attention to the statement in June by the Deputy Secretary of Defense for Procurement and Procurement, Ellen Lord, according to which at the beginning of 2020 there will be a "disciplined and graceful curtailment" of all Turkish contracts related to the F-35 Lightning II program.
The Drive draws attention to the fact that the military’s request indicates the F-35B Lightning II (with a short take-off and vertical landing) and the F-35C Lightning II (deck), but does not say anything about the F-35A Lightning II (for military air force). It is proposed to use funds originally intended for the purchase of aircraft spare parts as a source of financing for the search for component suppliers.
The publication notes that in reality the Pentagon’s cost of replacing Turkish suppliers will be higher, but does not doubt the ability of the United States to find an alternative to contractors from Turkey. Also, The Drive recalls the existing shortage of spare parts for fighter jets, which, due to the request, may still grow.
In June, it was reported that Turkey, fearing US sanctions over the purchase of the Triumph C-400 from Russia, had accumulated spare parts for its fourth-generation US-made F-16 Viper fighters.
In June 2018, it became known that the United States could transfer F-35 Lightning II to Turkey with a trimmed ALIS (Autonomic Logistics Information System) system.
Turkey is one of the main partners of the United States in the creation of the F-35 Lightning II. Turkish enterprises produce about 400 parts for a fighter. Washington’s possible sanctions against Ankara are related to the purchase of the latest Triumph S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems from Russia. The US is confident that such systems will be used by Moscow to collect information about the F-35 Lightning II.
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