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Wednesday, August 05, 2015

Concept of a nuclear-armed F-35C divides opinion

F-35C Lightning IIThe US government may currently have no plans to carry nuclear weapons on the F-35C, the carrier-based variant of Lockheed Martin's Joint Strike Fighter, but some in Washington are keen to revive the concept.

They see as attractive the concept of carrier-based nuclear deterrence operations, particularly with an eye towards a 2017 review of the country's nuclear posture and planned initial operational capability of the naval fighter jet in 2018.

Thomas Karako of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies says it might not be the current policy to deploy nuclear weapons on aircraft carriers, but there needs to be some debate, particularly while the F-35C is still in development.

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