On Friday, Secretary Jim Mattis ordered a review of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Program and the Presidential Aircraft Recapitalization program, both of which have been highly criticized by President Donald Trump.
Navy Capt. Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman said in a statement that the reviews are meant to address the budgetary decisions of the programs.
“The purpose of these reviews is to inform programmatic and budgetary decisions, recognizing the critical importance of each of these acquisition programs,” Capt. Davis said.
“This is a prudent step to incorporate additional information into the budget preparation process and to inform the secretary’s recommendations to the president regarding critical military capabilities,” he continued.
In December, then-President-elect Trump took to Twitter to blast F-35 fighter jet program, the nation’s most expensive weapons program in all of American military history. Since it’s development in 2001, the Lockheed Martin product has cost over $400 billion dollars to produce and has had its production delayed numerous times.
“The F-35 program and cost is out of control. Billions of dollars can and will be saved on military (and other) purchases after January 20th,” he said on December 12, 2016.
The F-35 is said to be the world’s most sophisticated warplane, fully equipped with stealth capabilities which allow the aircraft to escape or delay detection, even by the most top-of-the-line radar systems.