The United States plans to re-start production of the F-22 fighter next year after a five-year reprive. At the direction of then-Defense Secretary Robert Gates, in 2009, the production of the F-22 was terminated after producing just 187 aircraft, which was far short of the original requirement of 749 jets.
Some argue the US Air Force should have more F-22s due to their technical edge over other fighter jets, namely the F-35A.
Others say that the price tag for F-22 could be too much for the Air Force to bear.
"The bigger problem may be economic. At issue is more than potentially alarming restart costs; the F-22s are very expensive to operate, and the USAF knows so," Hasik, who a senior research fellow at the Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security, wrote for the Atlantic Council.
The average cost of a flight hour for the F-22 is $68,362, while for the F-16 it's almost three times less — $22,514, according to the US magazine.
What's interesting is the operating cost of the F-22 will be even more expensive than the new F-35, which will cost around $42,000 per hour.
"Today, I would like to highlight this deployment as a demonstration of our promise to support Romania and the rest of our NATO allies," Lt. Gen. Timothy Ray said in an Air Force press release. "Romania is one of our strongest allies."
The F-22 was designed as an air superiority fighter, but can also be used for ground attacks, electronic warfare and signals intelligence. Lockheed Martin was the prime contractor for the F-22 fighter jet.