When the disarmament fans start griping about the cost of our piddling 185 Raptors and the waste of money on anything close to the programmed buy of F-35, one of the arguments they love to trot out is that there is no need for an air dominance fighter. For that matter there is no need for a modern 21st century tactical fighter force at all. All future wars are going to be Special Ops against fanatical jihadi terrorists in backwaters of the world.
Putin to Watch as Stealth Pair Dances at Moscow Air Show
Don't doubt for a minute that the weapons system of this jet is a bit crude compared to F-22 and F-35. But that slight degrade in capability can easily be overcome by fielding a thousand of them to handle our guys at roughly ten-to-one.
They've done that in the past and it is core to their procurement doctrine. Mass trumps finesse in their book.