November 19, 2015
Cracks have been discovered in a wing spar of a heavily tested F-35C, requiring a design change and a retrofit package for the existing fleet. The wing of the carrier-variant F-35C-model is distinctly different from the A and B-models of the aircraft, with a larger wing area and a folding wing.
Northrop Grumman has delivered the center fuselage section for the first F-35 airframe intended for delivery to Israel.
India's Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar reports that India is in the final stages of negotiations for the delivery of 36 Rafale fighters.
Russia has been developing plans for joint military operations in Syria in coordination with France. Following an ISIS terrorist attack in Paris that left 129 dead, France has carried out dozens of raids on the ISIS capital of Raqqa in Syria, flying Mirage 2000 fighters out of air bases in Jordan and Rafale fighter-bombers out of air bases in the United Arab Emirates.
France is deploying its aircraft carrier, the Charles de Gaulle to the Eastern Mediterranean to reinforce their air power in operations against ISIS. The Charles de Gaulle carries up to 40 aircraft and helicopters.
China has signed a contract for the deliver of 24 Su-35 fighters from Russia. The Su-35 is the newest version of the Su-27 Flanker family of aircraft.
Argentina's military has suspended an agreement for the purchase 14 Israeli-built Kfir fighters, to allow the next national government to weigh-in on the decision. Argentina is in the middle of national elections. The 14 Block 60 Kfir fighters are refurbished examples that were originally operated by the Israeli air force.
South Korea is in the final stages of negotiations with Indonesia over a deal for joint development of Korea's next-generation KF-X fighter. Under the proposed development program, Indonesia would contribute 20-percent of the development cost and would place an order for 50 aircraft, due to be available beginning in 2025. Analysts, however, have questioned Korea's ability fo finance such an ambitious development effort, particularly after the U.S. denied the transfer of key radar technology from the F-35.