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The history — and future — of the defense industry in Arizona

By Lauren Gilger
Published: Tuesday, November 7, 2023 - 11:28am

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F-35A Lightning II
Tech. Sgt. Christopher Boitz/U.S. Air Force
Luke Air Force Base in Glendale, Arizona.

Not long after the war began in Gaza between Israel and Hamas, President Joe Biden gave a rare Oval Office speech calling for more U.S. funding for the wars both there and in Ukraine.

In it, he pointed out another part of the story here: That much of U.S. defense equipment is made in America — in fact, a lot of it is made right here in Arizona. 

The aerospace and defense industries are big players in our state, and this economist says you shouldn't be surprised the president pointed out Arizona.

Dennis Hoffman is an economist with Arizona State University's W. P. Carey School of Business and spoke with The Show about the long history of these industries here. 

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