U.S. military grounds F-35 fighter jets
In this image released by the U.S. Navy, the Navy variant of the F-35 conducts a test flight on February 11, 2011.
February 22nd, 2013
03:04 PM ET

U.S. military grounds F-35 fighter jets

The Pentagon's most expensive weapons system is going to spend some time on the bench.

The U.S. military on Friday grounded the F-35 fighter jet due to a crack in an engine component that was discovered during a routine inspection in California. The fighter is currently being tested.

The Pentagon said in a statement that it was too early to assess the impact on the nearly $400 billion fleet of jets designed for use by the Navy, Air Force and Marines.

The program has been beset by cost overruns and various technical problems during development.

Currently, there are 51 planes in the F-35 fleet.

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Filed under: Military
soundoff (524 Responses)
  1. DUTIL

    Does anyone want to know the reason why we are buying aircraft?? If I were Iran or North Korea I wouldn't ignore this warning

    February 23, 2013 at 2:24 am | Report abuse |
    • Steven B


      We aren't.

      February 23, 2013 at 3:33 am | Report abuse |
  2. Jet Boy

    Got to say, they don't make them like they used to.

    February 23, 2013 at 2:26 am | Report abuse |
    • 2wheelz2go

      this is part of the product life cycle, but with media involvement. best products in class don't make it without their own flaws.

      February 23, 2013 at 3:23 am | Report abuse |
    • ken kelley

      Old F-15 with the right engines has an incredible flight envelope limited by the pilot. Would have been fun to be of the lucky ones-like yourself to fly one of these. Drones are the answer and only limited by design with the not accepted concept of unmanned flight..

      February 23, 2013 at 3:25 am | Report abuse |
  3. allenwoll

    Check with Orville and Wilbur NOW ! ! !
    WHAT a Crock ! ! !
    The taxpayer abuse fostered by the U S M-I Complex exceeds ANY external threat to our nation ! ! !
    Pres DDE warned us morte than fifty years ago ! ! !

    February 23, 2013 at 2:26 am | Report abuse |
  4. Gerbs

    And, China spent just $200 on a couple of hackers to rip off the designs from Lockheed.

    February 23, 2013 at 2:27 am | Report abuse |
    • Ariel

      best comment yet.

      February 23, 2013 at 2:41 am | Report abuse |
    • JesterJames

      China gonna take one look at the design and say "what a massive waste of resource". Then build 100 stealth UCAV for the cost one of these money pits.

      February 23, 2013 at 2:52 am | Report abuse |
  5. Stu Pedasso

    I hope those suckers are still under warranty

    February 23, 2013 at 2:29 am | Report abuse |
  6. srichey321

    Spend all this tax-payer money and get junk. What's new/ I'm sure some deals got done over gold, a few people got even richer and nobody goes to jail.

    February 23, 2013 at 2:35 am | Report abuse |
    • guywithathing

      It's a supersonic aircraft, the engines are subject to extreme stress. What do you expect, immediate perfection?

      February 23, 2013 at 3:09 am | Report abuse |
  7. winchester74

    and thats why we need to cut Social Security and kick granny off medicare - Gen. Eisenhower warned us about the cancerous growth that is the military industrial complex. We're more and more like North Korea - spending all our money on weapons of mass destruction while people starve and schools rot.

    February 23, 2013 at 2:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©™

      It is not because of a lack of money that many USA public schools are bad.
      With many students in public schools, more money would increase the amount that they learn only if it each student received a CEO's salary that would be terminated if the student made a B in any subject.

      February 23, 2013 at 2:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Bill Wallace

      "and thats why we need to cut Social Security and kick granny off medicare" Maybe we are having problems with SS because Bill Clinton "borrowed" $152.3B (Yes, that is Billion) from Social Security from SS and replaced it with worthless paper I.O.U.s

      February 23, 2013 at 9:04 pm | Report abuse |
  8. DickPerry

    Perhaps US should get some lessons from Iran on how to build those planes... LOL..

    February 23, 2013 at 2:46 am | Report abuse |
  9. scottw

    i have and airplane design i am willing to sell the government for only $75 million. it involves folding old newspaper. and having nolan ryan throw them. they go 100mph and can put out eyes

    February 23, 2013 at 2:54 am | Report abuse |
  10. ChiTownArt

    Our enemies won't have to fight us. We will spend ourselves into oblivion. Where is the fake outrage from Republicans on spending nearly half a trillion dollars on 51 planes?

    February 23, 2013 at 3:01 am | Report abuse |
    • Bill Wallace

      With IQs as low as yours, why would any other country be interested in the US?

      $400 billion is the entire design and development cost spread across 51 aircraft. Go do some research on the cost spread over the more than 4,000 aircraft planned. And that design and development cost is spread across the 9 partner countries, not paid for entirely by the US.

      February 23, 2013 at 9:07 pm | Report abuse |
  11. garyd

    suck it

    February 23, 2013 at 3:03 am | Report abuse |
  12. Viper

    What a friggin disaster this plane has been.

    The United States has to change its entire game plan. We spend BILLIONS every year of taxpayer money to build weapons of war. Then, we sell these weapons to our "allies" and a variety of "friends for the moment" who are really enemies of the state.

    Then, we need to spend billions more to develop weapons that can stop the ones we just sold!

    Technologically, there isn't a country on the planet that can touch us. But we keep pushing warfare farther and farther with weapons construction and sales.

    There's nothing wrong with the F-15. it has a perfect flying record! Why did we need F-16s, F-18s, F-22s, and F-35s? To perpetuate modern warfare, that's why.

    February 23, 2013 at 3:12 am | Report abuse |
    • Robert

      Viper, the problem is the Chinese and Russians, potential enemies, are developing aircraft that are nearly equal to the F35 and F22. I agree that our military is much to large and expensive. We still have this cold war mantality. We no longer need such a large military. The chances of having another world war with someone like China or Russia are pretty slim. But we do need to have advanced weapons, just not so many. I think it is time for congress to rein in the purse strings, and to pressure the military to cut back, to prioritize better, and become more efficient with our tax dollars.

      February 23, 2013 at 3:23 am | Report abuse |
    • Viper

      I agree with what you're saying, Robert. This "Cold War" mentality needs to cease. Just because the Chinese have a Communist government does not mean they have any intention of starting a war with us. They are in the midst of an economic boom, they are starting to develop a middle class. The last thing they want to do is blow up their biggest customers.

      And the Russians, while they may be a little nuts, have had their chances to kill us. They have hundreds of nuclear weapons just sitting there. If they were so determined to destroy America, they would have done it by now. All of the gesturing in the 60's and 70's was political maneuvering. There was never going to be a war.

      All of these nations are using the same excuse: They need to defend themselves against their enemies. So we need to "defend" ourselves from the Chinese, and they need to "defend" themselves from us, but the only people that lose in the end are the common citizens of both countries who are forced to foot the bill.

      February 23, 2013 at 3:30 am | Report abuse |
  13. pachy

    Where are Maverick, Goose and Iceman now that we really need them?

    February 23, 2013 at 3:36 am | Report abuse |
  14. ryan

    what happened to the raptor?

    February 23, 2013 at 3:40 am | Report abuse |
  15. Coin pit

    OMG~~400 billion dallors~~America has 310M population~ 400b/310m=1.3M$ for every single tax payer~~I am not sure I am that rich. I just feel painful about filling my car with 4$/gal gas~~

    February 23, 2013 at 3:49 am | Report abuse |
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