Biden Administration Loses an F-35 Stealth Plane, Asks the Internet for Help Locating It.

The F-35 stealth fighters, known for their near-invisibility, have taken it up a notch. The Marines misplaced one this past Sunday, and it has yet to be located. The incident involved an F-35B Lightning II jet, the version designed for vertical takeoffs and landings. The pilot encountered a problem mid-flight and had to eject over South Carolina. Thankfully, he’s safe and unharmed. But the plane? It’s still MIA. It is puzzling how it could disappear, considering its weight (over 32,000 pounds without fuel).

There was a moment of panic when it was thought that the plane might still be in the air, given it was on autopilot (as reported by NBC). This meant an $80 million aircraft was potentially flying aimlessly over South Carolina. Joint Base Charleston’s social media team took to Twitter, seeking public assistance locating the elusive jet.

“We’re collaborating with @MCASBeaufortSC to find the F-35 involved in today’s incident. The pilot is safe. If you have any leads that could help our search teams, please contact the Base Defense Operations Center at 843-963-3600.” – Joint Base Charleston, September 17, 2023.

X: Screenshot: Joint Base Charleston

The incident attracted some criticism, with Rep. Nancy Mace, R-S.C., asking in a social media post: “How in the hell do you lose an F-35?”

“How is there not a tracking device, and we’re asking the public to what, find a jet and turn it in?” she wrote.

X: Screenshot: Nancy Mace

X, formerly Twitter, as always, had a field day. Users were quick to poke fun at the situation:

“Losing an F-35, the world’s most advanced fighter, and labeling it a ‘mishap’?” – Davis, September 18, 2023.

X: Screenshot: Prison Mitch

Some saw a business opportunity:

X: Screenshot: Prison Mitch

Ryan Petty from the Florida State Board of Education humorously remarked, “Joe Biden once said we’d need an F-15 to safeguard our Constitutional rights. Maybe we’ll just keep this one since we funded it.”

 It took authorities hours to locate a debris field after an F-35 went missing when the pilot ejected because of a “mishap.” Officials said that the debris was discovered Monday evening about two hours northeast of Joint Base Charleston, an air base in North Charleston, without providing further details.