Tuesday, April 22, 2014

F35 decision: expensive, risky, irresponsible

F35 decision: expensive, risky, irresponsible

We condemn the decision to buy 58 F35 jets at $12 billion as profligate spending by a government which, despite its election promises, is about to cut funding for health, education, renewable energy programs, pensioners, the ABC and the CSIRO. The decision makes a mockery of Hockey’s claim of “no more age of entitlement”. Now add ‘except for the military and Lockheed Martin’.
Denis Doherty from the Australian Anti-Bases Campaign Coalition (AABCC) said: “The government is spending at least $26 billion on buying the planes, maintaining them and building new facilities for them.
“Some commentators estimate that with the two planes already purchased, 12 on order and the 24 which may come later, Australian taxpayers will be up for well over $50 billion.
“The F35s have been shunned by other countries because of their flaws, delays and cost over runs,” Denis Doherty said.
A Pentagon military spokesman has commented that the F35s have parts breaking and falling off “way too regularly” and that the software is “a risky, risky business”.
“The public has never been told why we need these planes,” Mr Doherty said.
“Australia’s main security challenge is climate change, not military attack.
“A F35 taking off from a warship uses about as much fuel as a motorist does in two years.
“How can this be called ‘defence’ of Australia and our region? In fact it will contribute to more cyclones and floods and increase insecurity and arms sales in the region.
“We will continue to campaign to reverse this irresponsible decision by every means at our disposal.”

For more information Denis Doherty 0418 290 663 

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