China’s Zhuhai Air Show is a biennial opportunity for the Chinese government to roll out its next generation fighter planes, flex strategic-tactical muscle, and offer a mix of military weapons for the world’s markets… this is the tenth show officially endorsed by the central government…
Is the Chinese J-31/FC-31 a “copy of the F-35” (video) ? — with attendant vast budget overruns, trillion+ dollar program price-tag, operational failures and questionable strategic need — or is the Chinese J-31/FC-31 high-performance fighter, in sum, a new raison d’etre for the existence of the F-35?
Strategic Demands regularly reports the F-35 analysis of Winslow Wheeler. Here is a recent letter to the NY Times.
And from Winslow Wheeler, Program on Government Oversight/Center for Defense Information, Summer 2014, a review of the F-35 program.
The F-35 is the largest defense program in US history.
Factoid: The US spends more on defense, as reported in ‘white’ (publicly made available) spending annually than the next 8 countries combined. The ‘black’ (national security related) spending would be added. Defense budgeted spending accounts for about 20 percent of all federal spending. This does not take into account ‘special’ appropriations spent for war operations (Afghanistan/Iraq spending) nor direct, related costs (est. USD $4 to 6 Trillion in Afghanistan and Iraq) necessary to be considered in a “full-cost, true-cost” accounting.