Does Canada need a fifth-generation stealth multirole fighter? I don't think so. As a matter of fact, beside the F-35 fiasco in general, Canada cannot afford such an expensive plane that had limited capabilities. A project worth more than $8 billion at the start, many experts now evaluate it at more than $49 billion. This might include all acquisition, sustainment and operating costs but does not guarantee the price won't go up again due other issues with the aircraft.
On Prime Minister Diefenbaker's Black Friday, it was announced that 14,000 jobs would vanish. The most sophisticated aircraft in the world, the Avro Arrow, would be dismantled and the pride of an entire country was slain along with it. I believe Canada has what it takes to produce another Avro Arrow.
If a producer was to consider making a feature film about the F-35 procurement process she or he might, given the events over the past few years either go with one of two genres: Max Senate and the Keystone cops, or Federico Fellini for something a bit more surreal. Somewhere between those two extremes lies, I would think, the reality of the storyline.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper is making a trip to New York this week, but it isn't to attend a United Nations meeting to which Canada was extended an invitation. The Prime Minister will instead be in the glitzy hotel, where he is due to receive an award from the little-known Appeal of Conscience Foundation, an interfaith partnership of corporate and religious leaders. Between the successive fossil awards for environmental savagery and the unfortunate de-funding of reproductive health in foreign aid, the Harper government continues to slide Canada's international influence down to the gutter.