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Dutch worry over F-35 costs

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So thought I'd revive this topic, instead of posting the latest news as a new "yet another JSF" topic.

Finally, it has officially been announced that the 85 JSF for the Netherlands will never happen. As I said many times there was no way 85 would be acquired. With the announcement that it was going to be 57 with 28 options, I said forget about those options. Now although it's still not stated how many will be acquired, it's been confirmed fewer than anticipated will be needed. Not because threat analysis or strategic roadmaps indicate we need less!? Not because we just can't afford them!? Nope, it's because we have fewer F-16s today, can you believe that reasoning?

The number of F-16s has been getting cuts, the latest drop to 68 remaining in the inventory. I think they're not done yet and more will be cut. The thing is it appears to be phasing out ageing jets, but actually it's major force reduction and the phasing out still has to start. JSF will replace whatever number of F-16s remain at the end, not more, only less. Now it's waiting for the "we only need to replace x F-16s" thinking to transform into "one JSF can do the job of two F-16s" reasoning and we'll see a pathetic JSF fleet in the end. And it's basically the same story for other NATO countries.

--- Quote from: shawn a on September 04, 2011, 06:34:50 AM ---I'm an "old" guy, so I can adopt Alfred E. Neuman's attitude="What, Me worry?"
There's severe confusion over the whole program-not a good sign!
If I was younger-(much younger) I would worry.
Just like the Dutch!

--- End quote ---

With all respect, that's not true, Shawn. Your comments on the SecDef, Congress, F-22 or NGB testify you do worry to some level about these things... you might not care/worry about this case, but don't forget for EPAF nations (= your allies that don't have their own agenda compared to Germany, France), the JSF = F-22 plus NGB. There's nothing else! That's the problem with the JSF over here, to be against it, is to be against being a meaningful military player on the world stage PLUS having a credible air defense capability. While another type may address the latter, if JSF is scrapped over here, there will probably not be any other type (at least not for US-led deployments). That's the concern. It's not much different for Belgium, Denmark, Norway, or indeed Canada. Other than the UK, with the rest of Europe there's still some let's say "difficulty" having them commit meaningful capabilities to US-led "NATO-flagged" operations.

shawn a:
The Dutch don't have to worry anymore!!  ;)
In the June 2012 edition of Combat Aircraft, there is an article called "How much does an F-35 cost?", along with four other sidebars about the JSF (although cost was not mentioned in any of those).
SO-- THE COST OF AN F-35 IS-- (in decreasing order, and in millions of US dollars)
40 to 50
I hope this ends the confusion once and for all!  :D
Through life cycle costs ranged from 618 to 769 per plane! (remember, this is in millions of US dollars)
Well, that simplifies things!
I'm glad that buying a car is not this complex!
Let's put two of those huge engines in a truly revolutionary plane!
Let's start now!

Well, I've never seen a type having one price, so that's not really a problem. The problem arises when decision makers use old "best case" or just plainly the wrong figures for setting a budget or ruling out alternatives. Life cycle costs reduces the impact of the unit cost on the decision, but it's by nature a more unreliable figure. It's a good way to look at it, but it should be clear what you are talking about. If I remember correctly, the biggest problem in Canada was that the figure was based on 20 years, while politicians thought it was the figure for 30 years? That's bad.

shawn a:
Hey, you Dutch folks, don't worry--be happy.
Those people in the same boat next to you--They're Canadians.
They're worrying about the cost of F-35s as well.
Us Americans don't worry-- we'll just cancel some program we've already spent billions on so we can then afford the F-35!   ::)

I guess you're right, it's just history repeating itself. Typhoon, Rafale and Gripen all have been in the same boat kind of. Even the Gripen was looking like Sweden's biggest mistake for a while, now it has put Sweden in the top exporters list.


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