Re: Hearts & minds propaganda, courtesy of MoD
"That operator will pre-plan the flight and set the drone up to get on with the job by itself."
Furthermore, a test showed that a Raspberry Pi can outfly/outfight an experienced combat pilot in a combat simulator with identical aircraft.
Given that a drone can be smaller, lighter, and much more maneuverable (a flesh pilot can only take about 12 G, with major physiological issues), and you can probably build 20 of them for the cost of one F35. The survival duration of manned aircraft - particularly one like the F35, with an enormous infrared signature, high wing loading, and limited weapons load due to the need for internal stowage to maintain the limited stealth that it has - is likely to be very short, particularly if you don't mind trading a drone or two for the F35.