Germany Acts Quickly Following Turner's Request to Buy US F-35 Fighter Jets
Last week, my colleagues Marc Veasey (TX-33), John Larsen (CT-01), Chris Stewart (UT-02) and I sent a letter to German Chancellor Olaf Scholz requesting he reconsider the F-35 Lightning II as a replacement for the Tornado fighter fleet. Monday morning, German officials announced they will purchase 35 U.S. F-35 fighter jets to replace its ageing Tornado aircraft. I released the following statement in response:
"Germany's move to purchase this transformational 5th generation aircraft will increase coordination with our allies and strengthen NATO's defense posture to address threats abroad. This decision comes at a time when war has erupted in eastern Europe - making the importance of a unified NATO that much more pressing."
The full text of the letter can viewed here or below.
Dear Chancellor Scholz,
As your government deliberates its replacement of the venerable Tornado fighter fleet, we strongly encourage Germany to reconsider the F-35 Lightning II as a potential successor. By selecting the F-35, Germany would join seven NATO allies and ensure seamless coordination with key partners. Given the recent events in Europe, interoperability with our Allies and partners has never been more important.
We commend the German Government for its efforts to significantly enhance European security. It is during these uncertain times that the unwavering strength of NATO solidarity is truly highlighted, and Germany’s leadership in collective defense is critically important.
In mid-February, the United States Air Force deployed F-35 Lightning II aircraft from the 388th and 419th Fighter Wings to Spangdahlem Air Base. The United States is proud to enhance NATO’s collective defense posture with the F-35 and increase air integration with our Allies and Partner nations. This 5th generation capability provides the Alliance with the flexibility to address a multitude of missions in this increasingly dynamic environment.
We thank you for your steadfast commitment to NATO and our transatlantic partnership and look forward to working together to provide all Allied nations with the needed capability to ensure our collective defense.