More Raptors Coming?

The continued grounding of the majority of the F-15 fleet has caused defense officials to reconsider limiting the purchase of new F-22A Raptors to just 183. Jim Wolf of Reuters got an unnamed “senior Defense Department official” to confirm that “the grounding of F-15s is focusing attention on the issue at high levels.” Lockheed Martin said in September that it would need to see money in the 2009 budget if it is to keep the production line open beyond the 183 to be procured through 2011. Loren Thompson of the Lexington Institute told Wolf that “insiders” have indicated the money will be there.