Bishop Applauds Hill Air Force Base’s F-35A Combat Wings

The commander of Air Combat Command, General Herbert J. Carlisle has approved the Air Force’s F-35A Lightning II for “Initial Operating Capability” (IOC).

This new status qualifies the 388th and 419thFighter Wings of Utah’s Hill Air Force Base as the first operational F-35A Combat Wings in the Air Force.

As a senior member of the House Committee on Armed Services, Rep. Rob Bishop (UT-01) has repeatedly touted the benefits of Hill Air Force Base as an appropriate home for this fifth generation fighter aircraft. Following the IOC declaration, Rep. Bishop offered the following statement:

“Talk to any war fighter who flies the F-35, and they’ll tell you it’s a game changer. This means America and her allies will continue to have air superiority. When we send men and women into battle, we don’t want it to be a fair fight, and this gives us the advantage. The commitment that Washington must make now is to build the number of planes needed, and to do it quickly.

Bishop added: 

Utah is the site of the first bed down because of the strong civilian workforce and the great public support for our military. Hill Air Force Base is the logical place. With the depot operations and the Utah Test and Training Range, we can test, maintain, and fly these planes all in one location. This ensures Hill remains critical to our national defense now and into the future.”