Poland to buy 32 F-35 jets to replace Soviet-era fleet

Poland to buy 32 F-35 jets to replace Soviet-era fleet.
Poland plans to buy 32 Lockheed Martin F-35A fighters to replace Soviet-era jets. Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak said, amid the growing assertiveness of neighbor Russia.
The United States is expected to expand sales of F-35 fighters to five nations including Poland as European allies bulk up their defenses in the face of a strengthening Russia.
Poland is among NATO member countries that spend at least 2% of GDP on defense. Warsaw agreed in 2017 to raise defense spending gradually from 2% to 2.5% of GDP, meaning annual spending should nearly double to about 80 billion zlotys (16.5 billion pounds) by 2032.
U.S. arms sales to foreign governments rose 13 percent to $192.3 billion in the year ended Sept. 30. F-35A fighters are estimated to cost $85 million each.
Blaszczak also said Poland was making progress in convincing the United States to increase its military presence on Polish soil.

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