McDonnell Douglas Gets $578-Million Order: The defense firm received the order from Thailand for eight F-18 fighter jets, the Pentagon said. As required under U.S. foreign military sales regulations, the Pentagon is the middleman for the sale. The Defense Department formally notified Congress of Thailand's order. Congress has 30 days to block the order before it goes through. McDonnell Douglas Corp. makes the F-18s in St. Louis. The order, long expected, could eventually mean millions of dollars for General Motors Corp.'s Hughes division. Thailand wants the Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile, which Los Angeles-based Hughes makes, for the F-18s. The State Department has so far blocked the sale of Amraams to Thailand.