Socialist Worker

Warmongers throw good money after bad

Issue No. 2563

Expensive toy—a model of the new aircraft carrier

Expensive toy—a model of the new aircraft carrier (Pic: Flickr/Francisco Antunes)


How much bang for your buck do you think you’d get for a £100 million fighter jet?

The F-35 Lightning II sounds impressive. The Ministry of Defence says it’s “the world’s most advanced fighter jet”.

It’s also the most expensive. Defence minister Michael Fallon plans to spend £12 billion on 138 of them.

But there are one or two small problems.

One is that the new “stealth” jet can’t communicate with any other plane or warship without giving itself away. Another is that it’s “too heavy” to take off or land vertically like it’s designed to.

Fallon boasted that the jet’s computer is “the most powerful and comprehensive” in history.

It has less memory than the average smartphone.

The broadband internet on the expensive new aircraft carriers, bought specially for these expensive new planes, is four times weaker than that in the average household.

That “severely hampers the jet’s abilities,” according to the Times newspaper.

All of this can be fixed with a few upgrades and “spare parts” for just £50 million extra—each.

No one’s sure how much the plane actually costs any more, not even its maker Lockheed Martin.

A military insider called the new planes “utterly pathetic”. Of course, they’d prefer to throw even more money at the military.

Socialist Worker has a better solution. Stop spending billions on killing machines.


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