SAINT LOUIS, Missouri -- Boeing unveiled the first of 24 F/A-18Fs ordered by the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) in a ceremony this morning in St. Louis, Missouri. The event drew hundreds of Boeing factory employees and RAAF officials, including Air Marshall Mark Binskin, Australia's air force chief. Binskin said the F/A-18F will help the RAAF transition to the advanced avionics and stealth technology offered by the F-35. Australia plans to order 100 F-35s. If Boeing still hopes to supplant the F-35 in Australia with an expanded order for F/A-18s, Binskin delivered a tough message. There will be no "Plan B" if the F-35 is delayed, he said, adding: "Sorry, Bob." Bob Gower is Boeing's F/A-18 vice president.
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