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A USMC F-35B at Joint Base Elmondorf-Richardson as part of Northern Edge this May (Photo: Zachariah Hughes, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage)

Air Force moving to address F-35 spare-parts problems

by Jim Thompson, The Destin Log

EGLIN AFB — The Air Force is taking a three-pronged approach to addressing spare-parts issues threatening the F-35 stealth fighter jet program at Eglin Air Force Base and elsewhere, according to its Air Education and Training Command.

Last month, U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., whose district includes Eglin AFB, said problems with acquiring spare parts and repairing parts for the F-35 could seriously compromise the base’s role in training pilots for the next-generation fighter jet.

“While we’ve not been late in graduating any pilots yet, I’ve been told that we are rapidly approaching the inability to accomplish the mission,” Gaetz said.

Questions posed at various levels of Air Force command following Gaetz’s comment went unanswered until a few days ago. The deputy director of public affairs at AETC, which has broad responsibilities for training across the Air Force, responded via email late last week to questions initially posed to Eglin’s public affairs office.

Read more at The Destin Log