The first F-35 Joint Strike Fighter arrived at Luke Air Force Base this week, which will be the primary training base for the new airplane.
The memory of Frank Luke deserves better. But it is also appropriate that the quintessence of the Military Industrial Complex's rackets should be operating alongside the top guns of the Real Estate Industrial Complex's hustles.
If you're new to the F-35 Lightning II, the program was intended to produce an affordable, durable, next-generation stealth fighter that could be manufactured in mass numbers to replace all of today's fighters. Not only that, but it would be used by all the jet-based services, including the Marines who demanded a short take-off and vertical landing version.
It was intended to be widely sold to U.S. allies. And this backbone of the future Air Force, Marine and naval tactical aviation was touted as a wonder: Not only with stealth capabilities, but a highly advanced "combat suite" for the pilot, including a helmet providing 360-degree "situational awareness" and relaying this to other F-35s and controllers.
Instead, it has become a disaster of trillion-dollar proportions. Only Lockheed Martin is happy.