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U.S. asks for help finding missing F-35
fighter jet after pilot ejects during 'mishap'

Original Article

Posted By: Dreadnought, 9/18/2023 12:16:31 PM

A U.S. fighter jet’s stealth abilities appear to be working too well, with authorities forced to ask the public for help finding an F-35 that went missing somewhere over South Carolina when the pilot ejected because of a “mishap.” Joint Base Charleston, an air base in North Charleston, said it was working with Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort to "locate an F-35 that was involved in a mishap" Sunday afternoon. The pilot was able to safely eject from the aircraft, an F-35B Lightning II jet, and was taken to a local medical center in stable condition, it said in a Facebook post around 5:35 p.m. ET. The jet was left in autopilot

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Reply 1 - Posted by: plomke 9/18/2023 12:32:56 PM (No. 1558674)
Has anyone checked with Lil Kim in N. Korea??? Lost on purpose,maybe...
11 people like this.

Reply 2 - Posted by: Nimby 9/18/2023 12:43:55 PM (No. 1558679)
It's probably in Russia!! Anyone remember the movie "Firefox, starring Clint Eastwood? Tables turned under the bumbling C-i-C?
10 people like this.

Reply 3 - Posted by: mc squared 9/18/2023 12:53:46 PM (No. 1558683)
Something wrong here. Satellites could track my F150 from thousands of miles up and they can't find something as large as an F35? There were pictures of Russian missiles in Cuba in 1962.
32 people like this.

Reply 4 - Posted by: Luandir 9/18/2023 1:12:09 PM (No. 1558687)
Ask the Chinese.
15 people like this.

Reply 5 - Posted by: Mayberry 9/18/2023 1:20:53 PM (No. 1558691)
The gang that couldn't shoot straight.
9 people like this.

Reply 6 - Posted by: jntsrgn 9/18/2023 1:22:17 PM (No. 1558692)
Did the pilot have a vaccine mishap mid flight?
9 people like this.

Reply 7 - Posted by: Madman2 9/18/2023 1:24:56 PM (No. 1558693)
In the 1950's a Navy pilot had to eject from an F7U Cutlass jet that was flying over San Diego. He pointed it out to sea before he ejected but with the canopy gone the aircraft started a series of slow turns over the city for almost two hours before it ran out of fuel and safely landed in the bay without incident. This was before autopilot was invented, but it shows that manned aircraft can fly for a long time even without their pilots.
10 people like this.

Reply 8 - Posted by: Phantomll 9/18/2023 1:46:01 PM (No. 1558703)
Hey media - the F-35 is a jet fighter, NOT a "fighter jet"!!
14 people like this.

Reply 9 - Posted by: Pearson365 9/18/2023 1:48:48 PM (No. 1558704)
Some thoughts from a non-pilot: A. Why did the pilot eject if the jet as still able to fly? B. Why didn’t the pilot of the other F-35 remain with the pilotless jet to establish direction and warn off other aircraft? As well as people on the ground? C. Why was the abandoned jet’s transponder NOT operating? Transponder’s signals would provide location data for tracking. D. Why haven’t the Marines announced the fuel load and estimated range of the jet? E. When the pilot put the plane on autopilot before ejection, was the device programmed to fly a specific route or simply keep flying? F. How can we afford to buy & maintain sensitive comber jets for $100 million apiece? Especially when the Ukraine war has shown that $5,000 shoulder launched anti aircraft missiles, or MANPADs, supplied by the US can shoot down Russian combat jets? While it’s great news that the pilot survived, the loss of an incredibiy expensive aircraft is troubling.
21 people like this.

Reply 10 - Posted by: GrandmaP 9/18/2023 1:52:39 PM (No. 1558708)
Mishap? Say what! A $135,000,000 aircraft lost over South Carolina. With no tracking data? A mishap. Someone's lying out their butt hole.
23 people like this.

Reply 11 - Posted by: Sully 9/18/2023 2:07:17 PM (No. 1558719)
I don't know much but I know the f35 is a stealth ac. If he ejected in stealth mode IDK what the options are but you won't find it w radar.
4 people like this.

Reply 12 - Posted by: FL_Absentee_Voter 9/18/2023 2:14:00 PM (No. 1558727)
Given that the F-35 is a fifth-generation stealth fighter, I understand why it wouldn't be transmitting anything on a broad beam when on a mission. But this was a training flight over CONUS - shouldn't at least the black box be programmed to start pinging on impact? Is it at the bottom of a lake? In the interim, the Corps did not do themselves a favor by taking to X for help finding it. The responses from that crowd are to be expected, along the lines of, "I looked in the back yard but didn't see anything. What color was it?"
11 people like this.

Reply 13 - Posted by: Californian 9/18/2023 2:29:00 PM (No. 1558738)
2, read the book, way better than the movie, as usual, although I loved the movie 9, Regarding F: a shoulder launched missile is not a threat to a high flying stealth fighter that unloaded from 80+ miles away and turned back to base. Those are for helicopters and low flying close air support air craft. I already texted my friend that the jokes over and he needs to return it. He said he earned it because he got enough Pepsi points so we might not get it back.
5 people like this.

Reply 14 - Posted by: Lawsy0 9/18/2023 2:29:50 PM (No. 1558739)
My American Patriot Heart wants very much to believe this report, but it is from NBC News which has taught me to instinctively suspend all belief. ABC nor CBS would fare no better. The military cannot assume we believe their reports, either.
9 people like this.

Reply 15 - Posted by: Pault135 9/18/2023 2:32:36 PM (No. 1558741)
Un believable!!
5 people like this.

Reply 16 - Posted by: DVC 9/18/2023 2:33:08 PM (No. 1558742)
Ninety nine percent chance that it is in one of the Lakes. If it hit land someone would have called already As the Nancy Nace....when you are an ignorant fool, keep your mouth shut and people might not figure it out. But, post stupid comments on social media and everyone will be sure of your stupidity.
6 people like this.

Reply 17 - Posted by: DVC 9/18/2023 2:40:18 PM (No. 1558747)
Does no one understand that this a stealth jet and doesn't show up on tadar? I'm assuming that the fault was a control system problem that left the pilot as a passenger without any inputs to the aircraft, but with it still flying.
6 people like this.

Reply 18 - Posted by: DVC 9/18/2023 2:41:30 PM (No. 1558749)
Re #3, the whole point of a stealth aircraft is that they can't be tracked.
6 people like this.

Reply 19 - Posted by: bighambone 9/18/2023 2:52:41 PM (No. 1558752)
They can’t fly stealth jets of any sort over the USA without FAA radars being able to track them or they could collide with passenger airliners at any time.
8 people like this.

Reply 20 - Posted by: mc squared 9/18/2023 3:02:38 PM (No. 1558757)
#18,: I didn't say radar, I said satellite tracking. I don't think sats use radar.
4 people like this.

Reply 21 - Posted by: KTWO 9/18/2023 3:11:12 PM (No. 1558764)
Probably just me, but the entire article reminded me of watching numerous clowns emerge from a tiny VW at the circus. Where did the plane go? What exactly happened to the pilot? What sort of mishap made the pilot eject. Did the pilot eject or was he/she ejected? Nobodys know nothing.
6 people like this.

Reply 22 - Posted by: FL_Absentee_Voter 9/18/2023 3:30:08 PM (No. 1558769)
Fully agree with #16 - what a stupid post by a Republican Congressman. This is in her district - instead of getting publicly cynical, she should have immediately contacted the Corps and asked what her office could do to help. Whose side is she on?
3 people like this.

Reply 23 - Posted by: TrueBlueWfan 9/18/2023 3:31:50 PM (No. 1558770)
I can't help but picture a head-on photo of the plane with a literal dog tag hanging from its neck, saying "If found, call the US Dept. Of Defense".
3 people like this.

Reply 24 - Posted by: BarryNo 9/18/2023 3:35:19 PM (No. 1558772)
I keep thinking of this as a spy opp, where someone hacks and hijacks one of our top-of-the-line stealth fighters remotely lands it, and strips it of its secrets, before dropping the remains out the back of something like a C-130 to create a 'crash' site.
1 person likes this.

Reply 25 - Posted by: chumley 9/18/2023 4:05:04 PM (No. 1558782)
Its a stealth plane. Its probably right now in the Base Commander's parking spot at HQ.
2 people like this.

Reply 26 - Posted by: Sceptic 9/18/2023 4:10:37 PM (No. 1558785)
Soon, we'll see it's picture on a milk carton.
6 people like this.

Reply 27 - Posted by: DVC 9/18/2023 5:01:10 PM (No. 1558808)
Re #20, satellites have visual or infrared cameras, and this is still images, and nothing like real time. Some satellites have radar, but those are few. Aircraft are typically only tracked by radar. Stealth aircraft are only able to be seen at very short ranges, like a few miles, by radars. As to the separation from civil aircraft traffic, when in "open" airspace, aircraft have radar transponders, a radar receiver-transmitter, which when "interrogated" by a ground radar site, transmits back a strong radar signal, with an attached transponder code, which is assigned by Air Traffic Control. Without the transponder on, the aircraft is essentially invisible, which is a major design intent for this aircraft. When operating in Military Operations Areas (MOAs) military aircraft have the right of way, and civil aircraft, while not usually totally excluded, are flying on their own risk, and SHOULD be talking to the MOA radio and giving position reports and getting back approximate military aircraft type, altitude and airspeed. The only kind of satellite 'tracking' that I am aware of used Emergency Beacons for downed aircraft which transmit a signal to a satellite, which then relays this location and aircraft type to a ground station AFAIK, military aircraft do not have these ELTs (Emergency Location Transmitters). And, often the ELT doesn't survive a severe crash, esp with a fire. And to #9s good questions, knowing many military and ex-military pilots, I can be pretty certain that they pilot only got out when it became clear that he had no control over the aircraft. Many ways that might happen, but more than a few pilots have died or nearly so while directing a dysfunctional aircraft away from people on the ground. You can be pretty sure that the pilot was just a passenger and the ejection seat handles were all he had left that would work. As to the transponder being off....possibly that was intended for the particular flight mission, to be stealthy, or perhaps it was broken, and not a mission critical item if operating in military only airspace. And absolutely guaranteed that it did NOT fly off to some foreign country as some have suggested, I hope in jest. The range without air refueling makes this entirely impossible, and no aircraft without a pilot can be refueled in the air. Knowing how much fuel was on board, and time aloft, they can be absolutely certain that after some point in time it is down somewhere. Again, my bet is that it is in a lake. When things or people "disappear" you can be nearly certain that it/they wound up in a body of water, leaves almost no trace. All those mysterious disappearances of people, usually driving at night, they get found in a lake or pond, usually years later. If I was in charge, I'd be looking for a fuel or oil slick on the surface of a lake in range of the aircraft. I'm betting that's where it will be found. Probably will be recovered, too, if in a lake, since lots of classified stuff that they don't want someone else getting hold of.
2 people like this.

Reply 28 - Posted by: DVC 9/18/2023 5:13:48 PM (No. 1558814)
Re #9. While yes, any aircraft can sometimes be shot down by a missile, your $5K number only applies to unguided rocket propelled grenades, which have very short range, and near zero chance of hitting any aircraft other than a helicopter hovering close by. Typical guided shoulder fired anti-aircraft missiles are more like $100-200K each, and have about a 10-15,000 ft altitude limit, and serious speed-altitude combination limitations due to the available maneuvering energy in the rocket. They are dangerous, no doubt. but just because a vehicle can be destroyed by a weapon has no bearing on whether the aircraft is needed, or useful. And stealthy aircraft also give of much less infra red signature which is often used by these small missiles to guide them, in addition to minimal radar signature.
1 person likes this.

Reply 29 - Posted by: Timber Queen 9/18/2023 5:45:56 PM (No. 1558818)
Maybe the Air Force could post fliers with its picture on telephone poles around the area.
3 people like this.

Reply 30 - Posted by: LadyHen 9/18/2023 6:37:17 PM (No. 1558838)
One might lose your keys or maybe your phone... but not a $135 million aircraft.
0 people like this.

Reply 31 - Posted by: danu 9/18/2023 6:52:34 PM (No. 1558843)
hmmm--our 'crazy expensive plane' gets lost...the day before griftolensky arrives w/ his black bag....well dr. watson?
0 people like this.

Reply 32 - Posted by: DVC 9/18/2023 7:23:10 PM (No. 1558856)
The two lakes mentioned have a combined area of about 250 square miles. Pretty easy to lose something in an area that size, where it won't leave much of a trace.
0 people like this.

Reply 33 - Posted by: WI Cynic 9/18/2023 9:00:13 PM (No. 1558888)
"Authorities believed there was a possibility that it could have remained airborne for some time." I hate that over-used phrase. "Some time" means anything from a few nanoseconds up until a full fuel load is exhausted. It would take actual reporters asking actual questions to narrow it down further, so they'll just blow some smoke at the reader and hope they reach word count on the article so they can go to lunch on time...
0 people like this.

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Posted by Beardo 9/20/2023 12:07:17 PM Post Reply
Police returned articles of clothing to a Tanzanian fashion designer they obtained while executing a search warrant of disgraced ex-Department of Energy (DOE) official Sam Brinton's home. The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) Police Department confirmed the clothes were returned to Asya Khamsin, who has alleged Brinton publicly wore clothing she designed, but which was in her bag she reported missing at Ronald Reagan National Airport years ago. In May, MWAA police officers executed a search warrant in connection with the case at Brinton's Maryland residence.
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