Over the decades, the Pentagon has led an aerial arms race, spending billions of dollars in a quest to develop a futuristic aircraft that could fly virtually undetected by enemy radar. In 2001, the F-35 became the latest incarnation of that stealth dream. And that’s not all. It was a plane that was slated to be more technologically advanced, and cheaper to maintain than any previous stealth jet, while also meeting the divergent needs of three branches of the US military. But more than 14 years later, the F-35 has yet to fly in combat and the weapons program is plagued with problems - many of which are not flying under the radar.
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