Skip to comments.Outsourcing Defense Contracts to Unfriendly Governments
Posted on 09/14/2011 6:41:51 PM PDT by Kaslin
Congress' choice: award a military contract to a Kansas company, or to a government-run Brazilian outfit.
The debt deal that President Obama signed on August 2 has sparked an important conversation about aggressive spending cuts in order to avoid a financial crisis. As part of that debt deal, Congress has formed the super committee to make recommendations to cut spending. The Department of Defense will surely have many decisions ahead of them as they are faced with the likely reality that defense programs may be subject to significant cuts from the committee.
Recognizing the need for light air support, the Department is expected to soon announce its decision on an aircraft to meet its light air support needs. This procurement decision is a case study in what the Department of Defense should do to protect taxpayer dollars. Two competitors have bid on the plane: Embraer, based in Brazil; and Hawker Beechcraft, based in Kansas.
Embraer is a Brazilian company with a strong history of opposing international security efforts by the United States. If Embraer is selected, there is a strong likelihood that taxpayer dollars will be put at risk. Normally the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) would not take up the issue of a defense procurement project based upon the country in which an aircraft is being built, but considering the unique nature of the arrangement Embraer has with the Brazilian government, a much closer look is warranted.
The Brazilian government has a golden share in Embraer, which gives the government a majority share of the company. This allows the Brazilian government to make decisions for the company that cannot be stopped by other shareholders. The golden share also allows the Brazilian government to stop, slow, or alter production of the companys products. While Embraer claims that the government cannot interfere in business decisions, history shows that as far back as World War II, other foreign governments that have not agreed with U.S. policy have interfered with products being built for American defense machinery.
As the U.S. works towards defeating its enemies abroad, we need to be aware of those who seek to profit from Americas defense. Overdependence on nations that spend significant political capital opposing American foreign policy and national security is counterintuitive and dangerous.
If the Department of Defense selects the Embraer plane in the coming weeks, taxpayers will be giving more than $150 million to a foreign government at a time when there are no resources to spare. Awarding this contract to Hawker Beechcraft would keep $5 billion in the American economy.
The right decision for taxpayers and for our national security is Beechcraft. Their aircraft appears to be less risky, a superior product that will meet the light air support requirements. And it can never potentially have production stopped or stalled because of international disputes.
Taxpayers understand that it is necessary to spend money to defend the country. What they dont understand is why the Department of Defense would put tax dollars and national security at risk by choosing a foreign contractor that could threaten both our physical and fiscal well-being.
Unfriendly governments?Unfriendly to whom?Certainly not the Democrats who have a history of bribe money from some pretty unsavory countries.
A couple of points
1. Embraer Air aircraft is already in service doing the job throughout Central and Southern America, H/B aircraft (1) is not certified for any portion of the contract.
2. H/B is 50% Canadian and will assemble the aircraft in Mexico. Embraer Air will assemble the scheduled US buy in Florida.
3. H/B could not conduct the fly off without a maintenance team of 50+ because the aircraft had never operated on a undeveloped airfield. Embraer Air brought 2 mechanics. It is operational in the drug war in South America.
Nice hit job from H/B. Any of this information is readily available on the internet.
Further, if he was really certain Brazil is an unfriendly country shouldn't he be trashing Boeing for trying to sell the F/A-18 to the Brazilian Air Force?
What are the two aircraft types? Beech does make a fine machine.
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