One of the administration's key arguments in killing F-22 was that the F-35 was coming down the pike soon enough and it would have much of the capability of F-22 but at a much lower cost. Apparently not everyone in the Air Force is convinced that F-35 is an adequate substitute. Aviation Week's David A. Fulghum reports:
"I'm still planning on getting those airplanes," says Brig. Gen. Peter Pawling, who earlier this year was commander of the Hawaii ANG's 154th Wing and has now moved to the staff of U.S. Pacific Command. "I've been assured that [despite a smaller fleet] they are still coming to Hawaii.
"It's just that the F-35 and F-22 are such different airplanes," Pawling says. "There are those who think you can simply build more F-35s [to compensate for a smaller Raptor fleet]. But the F-22 is one of those once-in-a-lifetime airplanes. There is nothing out there that can fly against it. If we had a major conflict [against someone with advanced air defenses], I can't imagine going in there with anything but an F-22."
HT: J. Moses Browning