Israel Orders 25 F-35s at $120M Each

The transaction is valued at approximately $3 billion, funded by U.S. Foreign Military Financing (FMF).
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  • 08:14 AM, June 5, 2024
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Israel Orders 25 F-35s at $120M Each

The Israeli Ministry of Defense has signed an agreement worth $3 billion with the U.S. government to acquire the third squadron of the F-35 "Adir" aircraft, further bolstering the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).

The Israeli Ministry of Defense's mission to the U.S. has officially signed a Letter of Offer and Acceptance (LOA) to acquire the third F-35 squadron for the Israeli Air Force on June 4.

Brig. Gen. (Ret.) Mishel Ben Baruch, head of the mission, signed the agreement, which includes the acquisition of 25 F-35 aircraft manufactured by Lockheed Martin, along with comprehensive support and maintenance services. With this acquisition, the Israeli Air Force's fleet of advanced stealth aircraft will expand to a total of 75 units. Delivery of the aircraft to the IDF is scheduled to commence in 2028, with an expected rate of 3 to 5 aircraft per year.

Israel Orders 25 F-35s at $120M Each
F-35-launched air-to-air missile hitting enemy cruise missile in November 2023 @IDF

Valued at approximately $3 billion, the transaction is funded through U.S. Foreign Military Financing (FMF). As per the original agreement, Lockheed Martin and engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney have committed to involving Israeli industry in the production of F-35 aircraft sold to various entities, including U.S. forces.

In November 2023, an Israeli F-35 shot down a cruise missile using an air-to-air missile, marking the first instance of such a kill achieved by the stealth fighter.

The financing for the purchase of these fighter jets will be sourced through U.S. military aid, with Israel receiving $3.8 billion in military assistance annually from the United States. This aid enables Israel to utilize U.S. government-approved financing mechanisms to acquire significant American military hardware.

The United States remains one of the primary suppliers of arms and military equipment to Israel, a nation it staunchly supports, despite criticisms regarding its actions against Palestinians.

Post-World War II, Israel stands as the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. foreign aid, a relationship reaffirmed in 2016 when former U.S. President Barack Obama signed an agreement providing $38 billion in military support over a decade, including funding for the Iron Dome missile defense system.

In 2022, the United States allocated $1 billion in supplemental funding to replenish Israel's stockpile of missile interceptors for the Iron Dome system.

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