[Freemanlist2] Israel To Buy F-35s With Cockpit Mods By Alon Ben-David
Freeman Center For Strategic Studies
bernards at sbcglobal.net
Tue Aug 31 08:13:01 CDT 2010
FREEMAN CENTER BROADCAST- August 31, 2010
For Zion's sake will I not hold my peace
and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest." Isaiah 62.
FREEMAN CENTER FOR STRATEGIC STUDIES
P.O. Box 35661 * Houston, Texas 77235-5661
Phone or Fax: 713-723-6016 * E-mail: bernards at sbcglobal.net
OUR WEB SITE (URL): http://www.freeman.org
THE MACCABEAN ONLINE: URL:http://www.freeman.org/online.htm
Freeman Center Blog http://www.freeman.org/serendipity/
Ignorance Is Weakness - Know The Truth
Self-Inflicted Ignorance Is Suicide
The Freeman Center Is A Defense Against Ignorance
They deem him their worst enemy who tells them the truth. - Plato
"The hardest thing to explain is the glaringly evident which everybody had decided not to see." -- Ayn Rand
[Dr. Aaron Lerner - IMRA:
Simply put, Israel will end up with the same platform that its neighbors
will ultimately have. The U.S. will not allow it to add Israeli made
electronic gizmos that would give it a performance edge.]
Israel To Buy F-35s With Cockpit Mods
Aviation Week Aug 27, 2010
By Alon Ben-David Tel Aviv
Israel is pressing ahead with its purchase of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter,
after securing U.S. approval to install Israeli munitions on the aircraft
and a pledge to adjust the electronic warfare suite to emerging Middle East
"The aircraft will be designated F-35I, as there will be unique Israeli
features installed in them," a senior Israel air force official tells
Israel's initial batch will be almost identical to the international JSF
offered to other countries, with one difference: The F-35s manufactured for
Israel will include several cockpit interfaces to accommodate the air force's
command, control, communications, computer and intelligence systems. The
F-35 main computer will enable a plug-and-play feature for Israeli equipment
The U.S. also is not standing in the way of an Israeli requirement to
install a 600-gal. detachable fuel tank to increase the F-35's range.
Although the deployment would undermine the JSF's stealth benefit, "in some
missions, you can fly nonstealthy part of the way and become stealthy as you
enter the danger zone," explains the air force official, hinting at a
potential confrontation with Iran.
However, the fielding timeline for the JSF means it does not feature in any
possible near-term Israeli plans to attack Iran's nuclear infrastructure.
Moreover, several senior officers of the Israel Defense Forces and defense
ministry officials still think the F-35's limited payload capability and
range should have driven Israel to consider other alternatives, such as more
The air force has won that argument, although Israeli Prime Minister
Benjamin Netanyahu still has to endorse the decision of the defense
minister, Ehud Barak, to proceed with the purchase. Negotiations with
Lockheed Martin on the specific costs are ongoing, but the air force plans
to begin receiving its fighters in 2015.
According to the agreement now being formalized, Israel will pay $2.75
billion for the procurement, including support and training costs. Israel
hopes to buy 20 fighters for that money, although that will require further
cost-cutting by Lockheed Martin, as that amount would currently only pay for
19 of the aircraft.
The air force plans to receive the first JSF for test flights in the U.S. in
2015. Three aircraft would be delivered in 2015, and another three in 2016.
The rest would follow in 2017.
Years of negotiations on Israeli requirements to install indigenous
technologies on the F-35 as well as to include Israeli industries in the
project were concluded during a meeting between Netanyahu and U.S. Defense
Secretary Robert Gates on July 7.
Israel was forced to realize that the highly integrated electronics
structure of the F-35 will not enable installment of its own electronic
warfare systems on top of the aircraft's EW suite, and that the U.S. will
not grant Israel the source code to alter threat and jamming libraries.
Instead, the two countries agreed on a mechanism by which the U.S. will make
the required software changes to meet any new threat that might emerge in
For nonstealth missions requiring an active EW system, Israel will be able
to fit an external jamming pod on its JSFs.
Owing to a concerted Rafael push, Israel also insisted that it be able to
install its future air-to-air missile in the aircraft's internal weapon
bays. While the successor of Rafael's Python 5 is not even on the drawing
board, Israel believes the current U.S.-made air-to-air missiles offered
with the F-35 will not be sufficient.
However, Israel is planning to develop an air-to-air derivative of the
Stunner dual-mode (radar, infrared) missile, which is being developed by
Rafael and Raytheon as part of the David's Sling counter-missile and rocket
system. One threat it aims to neutralize is from "U.S.-made fighters
equipped with advanced radars," says the Israeli air force source, hinting
at the pending sale to Saudi Arabia of F-15s equipped with an active,
electronically scanned array radar.
An additional requirement is the capacity to install Rafael's Spice
air-to-ground guided bomb in the F-35's internal bay. In order to fit the
Spice internally, Rafael will be required to make structural changes in the
weapon, which will demand defense ministry development funding.
Now the air force must develop a proper operational doctrine for the
fighter. Several officers admit that while trying the F-35's simulator, they
flew at low altitude, disregarding the aircraft's stealth capability. "It is
always like that with new aircraft," says the air force source. "We will not
be able to fully appreciate the JSF's capabilities until we receive it."
The focus also shifts to hammering out details of the purchase plan and,
with Lockheed Martin, the procurement cost and payment schedule. Israel will
seek a loan to finance the contract and keep payments low in the first year,
with the bulk of the money flowing in 2014-15.
Lockheed Martin's willingness to allow Israeli industrial participation in
the project, with work worth $4 billion, sweetened the deal for Israel. The
main beneficiaries will be Israel Aerospace Industries, which will build
wing parts for the F-35, and Elbit Systems, which provides the
helmet-mounted display. Israeli government officials still hope to drive the
workshare through the program's life to $5 billion.
The letter of agreement, which will be issued soon, will call for the
acquisition of 75 JSFs. However, following the first batch of 19-20
aircraft, Israel will not be able to fund procurement of more than another
20-25.?? The air force fighter fleet will thus decrease, as Israel will be
forced to decommission its aging F-16A/B fighters before the end of the
decade. With 60 F-16 "Netzs" currently in service and only 40-45 new F-35
fighters to be acquired, the order of battle will shrink by nearly 20
To Make a tax deductible contribution to the
Freeman Center's important educational work, mail check to address above or go to our website www.freeman.org to pay by credit card or paypal.
We need your help to continue our Zionist work.
[Freeman Center Note: Considering the Jewish historical experience with weakness, ALL Jews (and, of course, Israelis) should be armed and able to defend themselves. Any attempt by the government to disarm Jews should be resisted by force. Better to die a free man than to live as a slave. Any attempt by the U.S, Europe or the UN to limit Israeli military freedom of action should be prevented!]
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
More information about the Freemanlist2