Israel's Surprising Reason Why They Don't Own the F-22 Raptor

Israel's Surprising Reason Why They Don't Own the F-22 Raptor

Israel has an exclusive F-35 stealth fighter model. Why don't they have the stealth fighter F-22 Raptor? This history provides an explanation for your question. Why doesn't Israel have the F-22 stealth fighter even though it gets a lot of money, weapons, and weapon platforms from the US to help with its defense?

Israelis Possess American Arms

The Israeli F-35 Lightning II from Lockheed Martin stands out as a prime example of U.S.-Israeli cooperation because it is the only F-35 Lightning II variant that has been authorized for modification to better suit Israel's needs in the Middle East.

Israel, on the other hand, also uses a large number of American airframes that are not stealthy. Since the mid-1990s, when Israel began buying American surplus, it has amassed more than 300 F-16s, making it, according to Lockheed Martin, the largest F-16 fleet in the world outside of the United States Air Force.

With all the military technology sharing and joint drills that go on between the United States and Canada, it's puzzling that Canada hasn't been able to acquire the highly sought-after F-22 platform, widely considered to be the stealthiest aircraft ever built.

The F-22 Raptor, the Most Discreet Aircraft in the Skies

Many people think that the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor, which is used by the U.S. Air Force, is the "most advanced manned combat aircraft" in the world. When compared to the F-35 Lightning II, which has been sold to some U.S. allies in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East (including Japan and Israel), it is more stealthy.

It "exploits the latest developments in stealth technology to reduce detection by enemy radar," has thrust-vectoring engines for increased maneuverability, and avionics that fuse and display information from on-board and off-board sensors into a single battlefield display. Its original purpose was to counter Soviet aircraft in air-to-air combat.

Because of the so-called "Obey Amendment," attempts to export the F-22 were unsuccessful.

If the United States were to export the airframe, Congressman David Obey feared that some of the sensitive and secretive technologies that went into developing the F-22 could be uncovered and reverse-engineered by adversaries of the United States. Obey was concerned that this could happen. Particularly noteworthy are the plane's stealth qualities, which set it apart from other aircraft.

In 1998, he contributed an amendment to the Department of Defense Appropriations Act that was passed that year. His amendment was a single sentence that said, "None of the funds made available in this Act may be used to approve or license the sale of the F-22 advanced tactical fighter to any foreign government." This was the entirety of his proposed change.

Back in the Soviet Union

During the development of the F-22, also called the Advanced Tactical Fighter program, the US Air Force predicted that they would buy a whopping 750 fighters from the program. However, as of right now, they only have 187 airframes in their inventory.

In addition to the Obey Amendment, any real threat to use F-22s against another country was another factor that hampered the F-22 program. The F-22 was made to protect against more advanced fighters that the Soviet Union was making. After the Soviet Union fell and the United States went through a period of unipolarity, the highly developed fighters were no longer needed.

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