The plane crashed into the sea on Wednesday. NATO is concerned about the potential recovery of the device by Russia and the risk of getting its hands on its technology.
UK, US and NATO officials on Monday promised that Russia could recover the wreckage of the F-35B stealth plane that crashed into the sea last Wednesday. The British aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth was able to take off from the plane just before it crashed into the sea. But the Atlantic Alliance was concerned about the potential recovery of the device by Russia and the risk of getting its hands on its technology.
“We’ll get it back first, I guarantee.”, Promised General Simon Doran, the highest-ranking U.S. official on board the aircraft carrier. “We are not worried about his recovery.”, General Tim Ratford, Commander-in-Chief of the Allied Forces to Europe, pledged his role in the presence of journalists aboard the Mediterranean. “We are not worried because we are working at this time. There was a concern when the plane crashed, but the pilot is safe, that is the most important thing.”, He added. He did not want to release details of the rescue operation.
The loss of this F-35 is a “Really sad incident (…) a setback”, Said Commander Steve Moorehouse, commander of one of the nine ships involved in the Mediterranean. But, he added, “The reliability of this device and our belief in it and our plan remains the same.”. The UK already owns 21 U.S. F-35Bs, most of which are destined for its two aircraft carriers, the HMS Queen Elizabeth and the HMS Prince of Wales. The F-35Bs are a variant of the fifth generation F-35 that is capable of vertical landing and short takeoff.