Only one fighter jet met Canada’s overseas needs, Tory cabinet was told

A 2014 memo to the Conservative cabinet said only one fighter jet could meet all of Canada's needs.

OTTAWA — A 2014 memo to the Conservative cabinet said only one fighter jet could meet all of Canada’s needs.

Four aircraft were under consideration and officials from the Industry, Defence and Public Works departments were called upon to present their choice to cabinet.

Their recommendation was that while all could handle domestic requirements, only Lockheed Martin’s F-35 could handle overseas needs.

A partial copy of the memo was obtained by The Canadian Press and dates back to when the Conservatives were mulling options on purchasing a new plane after years of political wrangling.

The Conservatives never went ahead with the purchase of the plane and decided to fund upgrades to the existing CF-18 fleet instead.

Now the current Liberal government — which promised not to buy the F-35 — is mulling what to do when those upgrades are no longer enough.

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