Re: Hearts & minds propaganda, courtesy of MoD
There seems to be an urgent need to convince the public that the F35 is a valuable asset,
And to a small extent, it is working. The balance of up/downvotes on my original post condemning this article as MoD propaganda for a programme that should be cancelled, has been a remarkably consistent ratio of 3:1. If I make the reasonable assumption that the upvoters agree, the downvoters disagree, what we can infer is that even amongst a group of unusually bright and well informed readers, 25% have taken the bait, and have been persuaded by the storyline of "what a great aircraft the F35 is".
From the point of view of MoD, that'll be seen as a really good outcome - its cost them next to nothing, and a fair proportion of the readers appear to have been convinced. Now, not convincing 75% of readers might be seen as a bad outcome, but lets face it, MoD are the people who think it is acceptable to spend £1.3bn on a simple recruitment system that doesn't even work, buy aircraft carriers when there's no aircraft, nor sufficient surface vessels to create a convincing carrier battlegroup. And even believe there's a need for carriers when we have coped without a carrier capability for over a decade already, and by the time the QE is aircraft-equipped, we'll have managed without a carrier for fifteen years.
Expect the "success" of this article to be followed up in the mainstream press, with a programme of "jollies for journalists" to get them to write gushing articles about the F35. The one thing they can't yet do is take them up for a joyride, because there isn't a two seater version (as there was with the Harrier, and many other fast jets), but I wouldn't be surprised if the MoD propaganda budget stretched to taking selected journos out to the US training facility in Florida.
No matter how obvious it is that the F35 programme is stupid, over-complicated, unaffordable, poor concieved, the MoD and the morons of the British government are not going to admit they've screwed it all up, and come up with a better plan. The last chance was when they balked at the cost of redesigning the QE mid-construction to take cats and traps, but realistically, the multi-billion cost of that would probably still have been lower than the UK's share of the F35 cost-overruns.