China: Behold the Flying Shark

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The Chinese have released new photographs of their J-15 Flying Shark jet fighter, supposedly designed to fly off Beijing’s yet-to-sail aircraft carrier. This is part of a long-standing great-power game of fan-dancing a new capability, in hopes it will instill fear (and perhaps bankruptcy) in potential foes, while helping to keep nearby nations in line. Frankly, I don’t care about the hardware. All I want to know is how come the Chinese come up with such great names for their aircraft. They’ve got the Flying Shark. For $382 billion, plus $1 trillion in lifetime operating costs, the best name we can come up with for the F-35 is the Lightning II? Not only uninspired — but a rerun to boot.