Britain to reverse decision to buy US fighter jets
LONDON - The Associated Press
U.S. Marine Corps version of Lockheed Martin's F35 Joint Strike Fighter, F-35B test aircraft BF-2. REUTERS PhotoBritain's opposition Labour party has described an expected government climbdown over the purchase of new fighter jets as an embarrassment for Prime Minister David Cameron.
Defense Secretary Philip Hammond was scheduled today to confirm a reversal of plans to purchase F-35c variants of the United States-built F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
The jet's design means aircraft carriers needed to be fitted with catapults and arrester gears. Hammond was telling lawmakers the modifications were proving too expensive.
Britain's previous Labour government planned to purchase F-35b jump jets, which didn't require modifications.
Hammond now says he will revert to Labour's proposal.
Labour legislator Jim Murphy says the climbdown is a "humiliation" for Cameron.