The war in Ukraine against Russian aggressors has fueled military expansion and arms deals around the world. Lockheed Martin is one of the defense companies reaping from this unfortunate event, having secured another sale, the time, with two European countries for its venerable F-35 Lightning II fighter jet.
The Czech Republic officially joined the “stealth” club after successfully procuring the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II last week. According to news reports, the Czech Ministry of Defense (MoD) has earlier sent a letter of request to the American manufacturer stating details to kickstart the transaction negotiations amid the increasing popularity of stealth fighters in European countries.
“The Czech government has authorized the MoD to negotiate the acquisition of aircraft following the expiring lease of 14 Swedish Gripen aircraft,” the MoD said, adding that “[h]anding over the letter [of intent] is a necessary prerequisite for further negotiations for the American side.”
In June, Czech Prime Minister Piotr Fiala initially announced its decision to purchase the American-made F-35 about four months after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. By August, its government had appointed an interdepartmental negotiating team to work alongside US experts on the deal in September. According to the Czech MoD, specifics and other details regarding the before and after purchase, including aircraft operations and maintenance, will be discussed sometime this month.