A Program in Over Its Head?:

The Congressional Research Service’s latest backgrounder on the much-in-debate Joint Strike Fighter program does nothing to calm growing fears over problems with cost and schedule. It quotes the Congressional Budget Office that attempting commonality across three models (Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps) can only lead to an F-35 JSF that is “more costly than Air Force requirements might dictate, but provide less capability than the Navy might desire.” And, it notes the GAO’s concern over what it terms the program’s risky plan to pursue overlapped testing and production, which GAO says could also lead to future cost growth. It’s not new, but the paper does collect all the potential pitfalls in one neat package.