Friday, December 1, 2023

The purchase of 14 additional F-35s would be under study in Belgium

According to the Belgian daily Le Soir , Belgian Defense is considering the possibility of acquiring up to 14 F-35As in addition to the 34 aircraft already ordered. This hypothesis, which remains put into perspective by the political authorities, would be based above all on a request from NATO estimating that 48 modern fighters are necessary to enable Brussels to respect its commitments within the Alliance, while tensions are increasing. growing with Russia.

In his analysis of the situation, Laurent Lagneau of the Opex360 site also mentioned this morning an edifying report from the Belgian Court of Auditors pointing to the continued decline in the level of ambition of the Air component even though he notes an "unfavorable evolution of the global security environment”. In detail, this document deals above all with the difficulties encountered today by the Belgian air force, which is struggling to respect its operational contract (32 fighters permanently available) even though it fields a fleet of 54 F-16s.

F35 netherlands Defense Analysis | Fighter aircraft | Belgium
Two Dutch F-35As being tested in the USA. Initially, 85 aircraft were planned, before the explosion in program costs reduced the order to 37 then 46 units.

LOGO meta defense 70 Analyzes Defense | Fighter aircraft | Belgium

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Fabrice Wolf
Fabrice Wolf
A former French naval aeronautics pilot, Fabrice is the editor and main author of the site. His areas of expertise are military aeronautics, defense economics, air and submarine warfare, and Akita inu.

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  1. […] In October 2018, the Belgian authorities announced the acquisition of 34 F-35A combat aircraft from the American Lockheed-Martin to replace its F-16 fleet, thus aligning with the Dutch choice, Amsterdam having ordered 37 devices of this type in 2013, a format which will grow to 52 devices today, and which could well continue to grow now that the Dutch authorities have undertaken to increase their defense effort to 2% of GDP. However, the decision of the Michel government in 2018, largely conditioned by the intense lobbying of NATO and the Flemish Minister of Defense Steven Vandeput, has never ceased to arouse controversy across Quiévrain, notably with a recurring questioning from many Belgian parliamentarians. And the recent revelations published earlier this week in the Brussels press will probably generate a new wave of protests, while the country wonders about the possibility of ordering additional devices. […]

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