Arrival of the first F-35A “Adir” in Israel delayed by heavy fog at departure airfield

Dec 12 2016 - 17 Comments

Heavy fog forced the F-35 to the ground, delaying the arrival of the first “Adir” jets in Israel. Not a good start, on the very same day Trump slammed the program’s cost for being “out of control.”

The arrival of the first two F-35I “Adir” stealth jets in Israel was delayed because of heavy fog at Cameri airbase, the final stopover of the Lightning II aircraft on their way to Nevatim airbase, on Dec. 12.

The aircraft were initially scheduled to arrive in Israel at around 2.00PM LT but the aircraft could not depart from the Italian airbase experiencing bad weather conditions with a horizontal visibility between 250 and 700 m, with clouds at 200 feet, well below the IFR minimums for the ferry flight.

Although some immediately blamed the F-35 for the delay, it must be said that the same wx (weather) would have grounded any other modern warplane on delivery or not involved in an actual combat mission.

An unlucky start for the “Adir” that caused the ceremony, to be attended by U.S. Defense Secretary Ashotn Carter, to be delayed by about 5.5 hours.

As if the delay was not enough, on the very same day, U.S. president-elect Donald Trump said on Twitter that the F-35 cost is out of control, and that he would save billions on that once he takes office on Jan. 20, 2017.

As a consequence of the tweet, Lockheed Martin’s stock fell by as much as 3% and was down 2.55% as of 8:45 a.m. ET according to Business Insider.

The “attack” on the F-35 comes just one week after Trump tweeted on the costs for the replacement Air Force One.

H/T Avi Scharf for providing updates on the Adir delivery



  • leroy

    “The F-35 program and cost is out of control. Billions of dollars can and will be saved on military (and other) purchases after January 20th.”

    Good! Time to make sure Lockheed Martin redoubles their efforts to make sure the plane is sold at a fair and reasonable price. What’s that? The “A” price should be $80 – $85M (adjusted for low inflation after 2012) as per their promises. At FRP.

    General Bogdan should not have been put in the position of having to dictate what the government would pay for Lot-9. LM put him in a very difficult position. That episode made them look ungrateful (given current prices and the American people’s and Partner Nation’s tolerance for delays).

    LM has created the most sophisticated, capable fighter built anywhere in the world. One able to totally decimate the MiG, Sukhoi or Chengdu competition. Now it’s time for them to make sure they keep their cost-cutting promises.

    As for the Adir’s arrival in israel? Let all Israelis break out in dance!

    Hava nagila, hava nagila
    Hava nagila ve-nis’mecha

    Hava nagila, hava nagila
    Hava nagila ve-nis’mecha

    Hava neranena, hava neranena
    Hava neranena venis’mecha

    Uru, uru achim
    Uru achim belev same’ach

    : )

  • leroy

    One more observation concerning President-elect Trump’s Twitter comment. Given the fact that the F-35 is an air combat “force multiplier”, let us not forget that having one F-35 is like possessing the same combat power afforded by multiple 4th gen aircraft. In other words, 1 F-35 equals 5 or 6 F-16s. Or 1 F-35 can destroy 12 Su-35s. LM should quantify the plane’s force-multiplication factor and communicate it to the public. There must be some way to determine it, or perhaps they already have. I can’t see any reason why that information should be kept classified.

  • leroy

    Oops! I said; “Or 1 F-35 can destroy 12 Su-35s.” Make that, oh 6 Sukhois (in full stealth air-air only combat mode 4 Aim-120s carried internally and at least 2 I’d say with the plane’s cannon). Assuming all the missiles hit (PK of .5 but I’ll bet in reality they’d work better). After the plane is outfitted with Raytheon’s new SACM? Well then given the greater missile loadout and improved Pk, quite a few more. Anyway – you understand what I’m getting at. At least those of you with half a brai … um, an average degree of intelligence.

  • tontonsam

    Well if LM hadn’t been so adamant about ‘maximizing development time and profit’ they might be having a better day right now.
    Lets hope Trump drains the F-35 with the swamp.

  • Uniform223

    1. This is nothing special
    2. Donald Trump is a pure KNOW NOTHING id**t when it comes to this aircraft let alone the military.

    That said about point 2 I seriously hope the man he pointed to for SecDef (Former USMC General) James Mattis will be able to talk some sense into him and that he would be willing to listen.

    • boxofvapor

      So you think that paying more than we have to is some kind of good thing? Listen, I get it, you don’t like Trump, then fine, but at least find something to complain about that he actually gets wrong. I don’t expect bias individuals to admit when he gets it right, as in this case, but at least keep your complaints for when he is wrong. Is that really too much to ask?

  • JohnZ

    Ha, ha, ha! The 4 trillion dollar boondoggle that has only fattened the bank accounts of the military industrial complex at the expense of the American people pushing the nation further into a massive debt hole from which there is no return, is by and large a massive failure in all respects. Yet this bloated project with its “cost plus” contract, as all military contracts are, is the perfect example of the corruption, greed and lack of moral fiber of those inside the military.
    The Pentagon is filled with satanists and pedophiles. Most of the officers there are corrupted and compromised. The entire procurement process is so fraught with corruption, kickback schemes and outright thievery little wonder America’s debt has climbed to this level.
    Additionally, stealth technology is no longer the invulnerability that was promised. It has already been compromised with new radar and satellite tracking systems. Russia has developed an electronic system that can and does render completely all electronic systems in use totally inoperative. Just do some research on what happened to the U.S.S. Donald Cook last year.
    The F-35 was designed for one thing and one thing only: Aggression! Primarily aimed at the middle eastern states to fulfill the idea of eratz isreal or greater Israel by creating chaos and misery through the middle east for the benefit of zionist Isreal.
    This must be stopped. This out of control military spending and the useless wars started by lies, deceit and propaganda must come to an end.
    America must finally stop being the world’s bullying aggressor and put an end to its continual wars against other sovereign states.
    As long as America continues to wage war against the rest of the world, the rights, freedom and liberty of the America people will continue to erode until their is only a military police state that not only rivals any of the past but easily surpasses anything before it.
    America is not only a danger to the rest of the world but a danger to itself. It is like having a family member suffering from a mental illness , out of control and creating chaos and misery within the family, even resorting to physical violence to others and themselves.
    Is this what is in America’s future?
    Is this what will enable America to survive?
    Is this what will enable the planet to survive.
    Instead America must close down all its foreign bases and outposts, bringing home all those Americans stuck there. It must no longer engage in “regime change”, “nation building” or any other form of destructive wars against other sovereign states. Out people must be brought home from those foreign bases and used for one purpose only: to defend our shores and to defend the Constitution from all enemies foreign and domestic.

    • Uniform223

      Your entire comment shows the depth of your knowledge or lack there of. Go back to playing your CoD…

      • JohnZ

        This plane was designed for one thing only and that’s for aggression. Besides being the most expensive boondoggle ever created it has proven time and again to be unfit and too costly. There have been too many problems with this turkey of a plane.
        As I stated before, stealth technology is no longer viable. Hell, this plane can’t even out maneuver an old F-16
        America’s debt now stands at 20 trillion and continues to rise everyday. Useless, unneeded military spending that serves only to promote further military adventurism around the world and in particular the middle east and Africa is one of the reason why America is in such debt. The maintenance of nearly a thousand foreign bases and outposts when we should be shutting those bases down and bringing all our people home to do as the Constitution states: to defend our shores and not go chasing around the world looking for monsters to destroy.
        Perhaps you should read and understand what Pres. Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams has to say about being involved in needless foreign entanglements , particularly with isrealhell,
        The depth of your knowledge is questionable.

        • Mali King

          The F35 unfit (for purpose)??? The USAF pilots finds the F35 fit for purpose……the USMC pilots finds the F35 fit for purpose….the US Navy F35 pilots finds the F35 fit for purpose…..the RAF/RN pilots finds the F35 fit for purpose…….the RAAF pilots finds the F35 fit for purpose…….the Norwegian Air Force pilots finds the F35 fit for purpose…..the Royal Dutch Air Force pilots finds the F35 fit for purpose….the Italian Air Force pilots find the F35 fit for purpose…..the Israeli Air Force pilots find the F35 fit for purpose…..see a pattern there JohnZ? In fact many of these pilots have significant 4th generation platform experience and to a man they all note that F35 makes 4th Generation platforms look like the ancient Model T.

          Costly….not with the unit cost of the F35 dropping steadily and significantly…..especially with the A model costing less than $100 million now with its per unit cost still dropping steadily over time. And this is before FRP!

          Stealth technology no longer viable!? Huhuhuhuhuhuhuhu…..just give me a minute….my ribs are sore from laughing. I wonder why the Chinese put a lot of emphasis on a stealthy design for their J 20 and J 31. I also wonder why the Russians put quite a lot of emphasis on a stealthy design for the PAK FA. Don’t tell me that Chinese and Russians got it all wrong and should have consulted your delusional wisdom! Let me let you in on a secret….the Chinese and the Russians know that there are no silver bullet/effective counter solutions to current stealth technology and would like to partake in the good stuff aka current stealth technology themselves!

          Norwegian Air Force pilots have already out manoeuvred and out fought F16s in mock dogfights and F35s have consistently slaughtered (simulated kills) Red Air (F16s, F18s, F15Es, A4s) in large force exercises and force on force exercises. There are no doubts about the F35’s deadly air to air combat prowess. Please do bloody keep up with the times. You sound like a broken down parrot!

  • su-34

    If a bit of fog grounds exceptionalistan’s marvel garbage truck, one has
    to wonder of it’s capabilities in case of real necessity.
    What if General Winter strikes, all nato goes into winter holidays? And they brag all the time about countering “russian agression”.
    OTOH, Ass Carter, and his MIIC buddies had a real bad day, first the delay of the freebie wonder garbage trucks, next Lockmart’s 4 billion bucks market value contraction…

    • Uniform223

      Hey how far along is your PAKFA? Did it get it’s “new” engine yet or radar? Has it done any weapons test and integration other than that fluff piece of a mockup during its cannon? How many PAKFA are there? How many flight hours has it amassed? Did they ever figure out or disclose the cause of its engine fire yet? When is India going to get theirs after already paying half the bill?

      From where I am sitting the F-35 is doing just fine and WAY AHEAD of thearming curve. Go back to your RT and Sputnik “news” for all your technical insight and information. Grown ups are working.

  • Elwood

    Far as I know the F-15 has yet to take a single combat loss ever. Why are we replacing stuff that still works?

    • sferrin

      How many Su-35s or S-300s have they played with? Thanks for playin’. Now back to your CoD.

  • Uniform223

    I wonder how many people caught this part or did they just read the headline and immediately jump to false conclusions?

    “it must be said that the same wx (weather) would have grounded any other modern warplane on delivery or not involved in an actual combat mission.”

    Again nothing special or note worthy. Just another sensationalist piece…

  • Mali King

    Until the modern battlefield is contested by an adversary who has reasonable gen 4+/gen 5 fighters and a modern layered IADS (think modern SHORADs like Pantsir S1/S2, Tor M1s…mid range system like Buk…..big money systems like S300s, S400s…..potentially all interlinked with each other). Your A10 Warthogs would be on a one way trip in such an environment without SEAD/DEAD, escorting fighters, electronic escort (EW), total reliance on specialised ISR platforms… we have to commit a lot more platforms than just the Warthog to harms way (and spend more money procuring, maintaining, flying many of these platforms just to support the highly visible, slow and vulnerable A10s). And if such a large package of platforms (just to support the Warthogs) are not coordinated properly….good luck with the health of the A10 force. And the Rangers sure wouldn’t be enjoying the lack of air superiority overhead allowing enemy airborne platforms to pound them hard whenever they want as well as the rather spotty close air support from the Warthogs flying around just trying to survive.

    You must be pretty short sighted to think that America and its allies are always going fight smelly men with rusty AK 47s in caves and huts in the future…..always fighting the last war until they don’t!! In the context of Israel, let’s just say that not all of their adversaries are tinpot militaries who can’t find their ar*e with their own hands.

  • Holztransistor

    And F-18s are dropping from the skies like flies lately? I guess we all can find something in a flame war to try and make each side/manufacturer look bad. But the question is how that is relevant. There is something better than military equipment. It’s called diplomacy and peace. But the problem is that various interests stand in the way (like who gets what).