DUTCH BEASTS

FEATURE ARTICLE // DUTCH F-35 IOT&E

The Royal Netherlands Air Force is on the verge of bringing its first F-35s into service. It’s working hard to ensure it replicates the success it has enjoyed with the F-16 as it enters initial operational test and evaluation in the US.

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THE ROYAL NETHERLANDS Air Force (RNLAF) is on the verge of realizing the full potential of its stoic support for the F-35 Lightning II program. During 2019, it begins the formal transition to its new fighter as the 40-year era of the F-16 begins to fade. As one of the four initial core members of the F-16 European Partner Air Forces (EPAF), the Dutch have long enjoyed a highly successful relationship with Lockheed Martin — they took delivery of the first of 213 F-16s from what was then General Dynamics in 1979.

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