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Until a month ago the Pakistani Air Force was showing in the list of confirmed participants on the Bahrain Air Show website. Parking bays were reserved for two Pakistani Air Force JF-17 Thunders at Sakhir Air base where the International Air show will take place this week.
The Indian Air force made a late decision to send their LCA Tejas to directly compete and expose Pakistan's JF-17 junk fighter jet. This was the first time the (Made in China) Pakistani JF-17 would participate and perform in an international event like the one in Bahrain. International media, military watchdogs, analysts and critics are all expected to be at the show judging every aircraft and their abilities.
Fearing a major blowout by critics of the low cost, cheap quality Chinese made JF-17 Thunder that China copied from the vintage Mig-21, Pakistan decided to pull out from the Bahrain International Air show and save itself from humiliation at a global scale.
Both the LCA Tejas and the JF-17 Thunder were allotted the same exhibition pad (Number 15) to park the planes in — and compete in terms of flight performance at the show. There were some doubts about the Sino-Pak taking to the skies, now it will not even be seen in Bahrain. Discretion being better part of exhibiting a fairly antique combat aircraft, it would have been extremely difficult for the PAF to sing their plane’s praises and maintain a straight face while seeing the 4+ Generation LCA Tejas pull tight 8G turns above them, and otherwise impress with its maneuverability and stealth attributes that the Thunderbird can’t possibly match.
The air show would have highlighted the generational difference and technological gap between these two aircraft. The PAF is apparently prepared to forfeit the non-refundable half a million dollars to reserve exhibition space than risk exposing their junk fighter jet to expert criticism, and negative contrasting with the LCA Tejas.
During and after the International Air Show in Bahrain, the world will never compare the Made in India LCA Tejas with the junk JF-17 Thunder, but instead the LCA will be compared with the likes of Swedish Grippen, UAE's F-16 Block 60 and many other modern fighter jets who participate at the event.
The people of Pakistan must be hanging their heads in shame for not being in a position to compete their so-called front-line fighter jet with India's LCA.
Tall claims by Pakistan that it would export the JF-17 to Sri Lanka have been openly rubbished by the govt. in Colombo. Now the only countries that would probably buy the out-dated, cheap and low cost Made in China JF-17 would be poor African countries that can get a flying toy with a little bit of money.