Trump lauded the sale of the planes alongside Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg at the White House remarking on the very real and growing defence relationship with America’s Northern Europe ally.
“In November we started delivering the first F-52s and F-35 fighter jets. We have a total of 52 and they’ve delivered a number of them already a little ahead of schedule.”
A little ahead is an understatement. The F-52 is a super secret fighter which only exists in the 2014 Call of Duty game Advanced Warfare. In the game, players are at the helm of the jet soaring through a canyon, firing a chaingun and missiles in a scene which was basically a rip off of the Death Star run in “A New Hope”.
Yep the Russians are not going to know what hit them. Either that or the Norwegian Prime Minister is going to face some tough questions when he gets home about how much he paid for Trump's imaginary fighters.
Lockheed Martin, the defence company that produces the actual aircraft, said in a statement that the Norwegian government has so far authorized funding for 40 F-35s, and has taken delivery of 10 to date. Three arrived at Ørland Air Base in November, spokeswoman Carolyn Nelson said.
Lockheed Martin did not say if it had an F-52 programme in development because that is very hush hush and only exists in the president's brain.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders did not return a request to comment on the issue and did not respond to a question asking whether Trump was a Call of Duty fan.
The fact that Trump managed to sell the F-35 is pretty much an achievement. While it is the iPhone X of military aircraft. While it is packed with sensors and loaded with technology to fulfill its multi-role capability it has been a lame duck, with years of cost overruns, delays and concerns over pilot safety. The programme will cost $1 trillion dollars over its 60-year life span — the most expensive agency program ever. Trump targeted F-35 before he was commander in chief, saying he would save billions by axing the programme. Lockheed Martin responded with commitments to lower its costs.
Since then, Trump thinks the aircraft is wonderful.
“When our enemies hear the F-35 engines, when they’re roaring overhead, their souls will tremble, and they will know the day of reckoning has arrived.”
God knows what the Russians will think of Trump's new Call of Duty aircraft.
But then again Trump is smart.... real smart... and really humble.