US Sends F-35s to Middle East, Likely Targeting Iran

Centcom is vague on plane's purpose

The US is sending a new group of F-35s to the Middle East, though exactly why is subject to speculation, as Centcom’s report was just a list of things the costly plane could conceivably do.

Things like close air support are capabilities, but not strengths, and the US has other planes better suited to that role. This is fueling speculation that the move is aimed at Iran.

There seems no particular reason to be after Iran just now, but US hostility toward Iran comes and goes like the seasons, so it is as good an explanation as any.

It may also be that the US is at a loss for what to do with these wildly expensive planes, and is just shuffling them into active theaters so they don’t look idle.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of