I've come across several articles touting the F-22 as the most formidable air-to-air killing machine to date, such as this one:
However, this article and others are also quick to point out there are too few of them.
It is not clear to me what the problem with restarting F-22 production is. The cited article appears to state that the USAF will focus on the sixth generation of aircraft, and integrate the F-22 into that.
Doesn't this seem like a huge gamble? When will sixth generation aircraft be ready in massive numbers?
There are new F-15's and F-16's being built, even today, and they still comprise the bulk of the entire USAF inventory. I don't buy the argument that they can simply "skip" the fifth generation in terms of air superiority fighters and wait for the sixth generation.
With the F-35 being in full production, is it really that hard to restart F-22 production as well? I'm aware that probably nothing at all on the F-35 can be just bolted on to an F-22 airframe -- but shouldn't advances in avionics on the F-35 (if any) only compliment a restarted F-22 production?
It seems at least plausible that the personnel and facilities involved in making F-35 would be able to be adapted to build new F-22's.
However, I'm sure it isn't as plausible as I imagine, and I'm just curious what are the reasons.