French Trying to Sneak a Radar Peek at Raptor?

f22_raptor.jpgReuters is reporting that the F-22 originally scheduled to be at the Paris Air Show this week is not going after all. And while Air Force reps said the issue was aircraft availability, the rumor mill is generating a more intriguing explanation.

According to the report "European industry executives said there might have been concerns over whether the stealth plane would be exposed to radar trying to unlock its secrets." Apparently this concern is based on the F-117 Steath Fighter's 1991 (yes, you read that right) appearance when, according to an unnamed industry exec, the French government had reportedly used its ultra low-frequency, long-range radar to track the aircraft on its approach to the airfield. (Man, I'll be the Iraqis had wished they'd had that capability a few months earlier when they were getting hammered by sortie after sortie of F-117s during Desert Storm.)

Or maybe the Raptor has pulled out because of the small detail that Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has told our closest allies (including Japan) that it's not for sale. (Of course, there's always the opportunity to taunt your allies with cool Made-in-America-type techology. What red-blooded Yankee doesn't hate to miss that?)

Read the entire article here.And for all the latest gouge from the Paris Air Show, check out DoD Buzz throughout the day this entire week.

-- Ward

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