OK so we haven’t mentioned the F-35 for a while, purely out of the goodness of our hearts, but we can’t ignore the latest bad news. In recent months, Lockheed, the US government and various F-35 boosters have been trying to play up the success of the grossly over-cost, decade-late aircraft that Australia is wasting billions on. Alas, the Pentagon, which is the chief purchaser of the aircraft, isn’t buying it. In a shocking memo obtained by Bloomberg, the Defense Department’s chief weapons tester has damned the project, declaring “the program is actually not on a path toward success but instead on a path toward failing to deliver”. And there is a “substantial risk” that full combat capability will not be obtained. This is despite the Air Force awarding the aircraft “initial combat capability” recently. The whole project “is running out of time and money to complete the planned flight testing and implement the required fixes and modifications”. Worse, problems “continue to be discovered at a substantial rate”. There’s also a minor ongoing problem of not having “a functioning and accurate gun”. So, all’s going well then.