Australia Delays in F-35 Procurement

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In an unexpected statement 3 May, Australian Defense Minister Stephen Smith announced Australia’s decision to delay its purchase of 12 Lockheed Martin F-35A Joint Strike Fighters (JSF) for at least two years. Minister Smith said he had spoken to US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta early 3 May regarding this decision with assurances that the delay would in no way affect the US-Australian defense alliance.


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