Two Storks Hit F-35, Sending Stealth Jet to Garage (excerpt)
(Source: Times of Israel; posted Oct 17, 2017)
By Judah Ari Gross
Two storks hit an F-35 fighter jet during a training flight on Tuesday (Emphasis added—Ed.), requiring the plane to undergo maintenance work, the army said.

The birds hit the F-35, called the “Adir” in Hebrew, just before it was due to return to the Nevatim air base in the central Negev desert.

The army said the plane landed normally and that it did not sustain damage.

However, it was sent “for maintenance work as is common after impacts like this,” the IDF said in an email.

The army said the F-35 fighter jet, one of the seven currently in Israel’s possession, is expected to return to service in the next few days.

Israel has agreed to purchase 50 F-35 fighter jets from the United States in order to upgrade the air force’s capabilities. (end of excerpt)


Click here for the full story, on the Times of Israel website.


(EDITOR’S NOTE: Speculation that the birdstrike incident is an attempt to cover up damage from a Syrian surface-to-air missile is fueled by several inconsistencies in the official statement.
Given the F-35 program’s long history of obfuscation, disinformation and outright lies, these inconsistencies look more ominous than would be the case for any other program.
First of all, the birdstrike incident happened “two weeks ago,” but was only reported on Oct 16, just hours after the Israeli Air Force attacked a Syrian missile battery. Why the delay?
Second, two weeks after the incident, the damaged aircraft still requires another “few days” of maintenance, even though the official statement says it sustained no damage. So, why does the IAF need well over two weeks to repair damage that it says does not exist?
Click here for one of the reports questioning the birdstrike scenario.

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Israeli Air Force F-35I “Adir” Involved In A Bird Strike Incident Gets Grounded (excerpt)
(Source: The Aviationist; posted Oct 18, 2017
By Amit Agronov
An Israeli Air Force F-35I “Adir” (Mighty) was involved in a bird strike incident during a training sortie two weeks ago, the Israeli Defense Forces said on Oct. 16. The pilot managed to land the plane safely back at Nevatim Air Force Base in the Negev Desert and no casualties were reported.

This is the first incident to an F-35 in IAF service since the first two aircraft have been taken on charge by the 140 “Golden Eagle” squadron in December last year.

The IDF confirmed those details to Israeli media outlets: “During a training sortie two hits were found on the plane, following to a collision with a bird. After an evaluation and assessment of the damage conducted together with the manufacturer – Lockheed Martin, the plane was sent to a normal maintenance and repair. It will return to full service in the next few days.”

…/…

The news of the birdstrike incident was released on the very same day the Israeli targeted a Syrian SAM battery that had attacked IDF aircraft during a routine flight over Lebanon, fueling speculations that the F-35 was not grounded by a birdstrike but because it was hit by the Syrian air defenses.

In fact, the Syrian Defense Ministry said in its statement that government forces responded to the violation of the airspace and “directly hit one of the jets, forcing [Israeli aircraft] to retreat.” (end of excerpt)


Click here for the full story, on The Aviationist website.

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