Spain opts out. F-35 Zombie Shuffle continues.
Not happening for Spain anytime soon. There aren't many options for STOVL fighters these days. No options at all, in fact. The only STOVL fighter aircraft currently in production is the Lockheed Martin F-35B Lighting II. Its predecessor, the AV-8 Harrier, was no different. The only other STOVL fighter to make production was the Soviet Yak-38 "Forger" . The F-35B is seen as the de facto choice for organizations operating Harriers. It is the only fighter with STOVL abilities, enabling it to operate from smaller aircraft carriers designed primarily for helicopter operations. This includes the Royal Navy, USMC, Indian Navy, Royal Thai Navy, Italian Navy, and Spanish Navy. With a monopoly on making STOVL fighters, you'd think Lockheed-Martin's F-35B sales would be shoe-in. Unlike the "A" and "C" models, there are no alternatives to the F-35B, stealthy or no. Yet, F-35B sales are looking incredibly shaky lately. Spanish AV-8B Harr