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Israel concerned about F-35 sale to Turkey, expects U.S. to withhold ‘upgrade capabilities’

Israel, U.S. discuss delivering jets without performance-enhancing software so that Israel keeps its edge

By Amir Tibon, Yaniv Kubovich
May 27, 2018

Israeli officials are concerned about a deal to provide F-35 stealth fighter jets to Turkey, and the issue is currently being discussed with the United States. A senior Israeli defense official says Israel would like to remain the only country in the Middle East with the F-35 in order to keep its military qualitative edge and out of fear that details about its capabilities would leak to neighboring countries.

Talks between Israel and the United States are centered, among other things, around software developed by the Americans that allows the “upgrading” of F-35 capabilities. Sources in Washington confirmed to Haaretz that the issue is currently “part of the negotiations” relating to the F-35 deal.


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