JERUSALEM --- Due to worries over F-35 delivery delays, the Israeli Air Force (IAF) is considering the purchase of some used F-15s from U.S. Air Force stocks.
The Israelis are purchasing a squadron of 20 F-35s which they agreed to buy last fall under a $2.75 billion deal. The Israeli F-35 acquisition is being financed through U.S. Foreign Military Financing (FMF) assistance, which comes to $3 billion annually.
But with the delivery of the F-35s now pushed back to late 2018 or beyond, the Israelis are seeking solutions to prevent the emergence of a capabilities gap.
The first part of the IAF plan calls for upgrading the service's current fleet of F-15s (68 aircraft) and F-16s (299 aircraft); the second part calls for procuring the used F-15s as a short-term solution until the F-35 enters service.