Skip to comments.Insight: How U.S. spying cost Boeing multibillion-dollar jet contract
Posted on 12/21/2013 10:21:03 AM PST by sukhoi-30mki
(Reuters) - Dilma Rousseff was thoroughly charmed.
Brazil had been struggling for years to decide which company to choose for a $4 billion-plus fighter jet contract, one of the world's most sought-after defense deals and one that would help define the country's strategic alliances for decades to come.
But Rousseff, the leftist president known for being sometimes gruff and even standoffish with foreign leaders, was thrilled after a 90-minute meeting in Brasilia on May 31 with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden.
After Biden's reassurances that the United States would not block crucial transfers of technological know-how to Brazil if it bought the jets, she was closer than ever to selecting Chicago-based Boeing to supply its fighter, the F/A-18 Super Hornet.
"She's ready to sign on the dotted line," one of her senior aides told Reuters at the time. "This is going to happen soon."
And then along came Edward Snowden.
Documents leaked by the former National Security Agency contractor, released in the weeks after Biden's visit, ended up enraging Rousseff and completely changing her plans, several Brazilian officials told Reuters.
On Wednesday, she surprised the defense and diplomatic worlds by tapping Sweden's Saab to supply the jets, a move aides said was made in part as a deliberate snub to the United States.
The decision was one of the biggest and most expensive consequences yet of the NSA revelations, which have strained Washington's relations with countries around the world.
Anger over espionage was not the only reason for Rousseff's decision. Saab's Gripen jet offered the best combination of price, transfers of technology to Brazilian companies and low maintenance costs compared with the other two finalists, Boeing and France's Dassault Aviation, Defense Minister Celso Amorim told reporters on Wednesday.
Still, the NSA revelations were clearly the determining factor for Rousseff,
(Excerpt) Read more at reuters.com ...
That’s probably not the case. It was just a convenient way to poke America in the eye.
I wonder how the union members feel about being screwed out of jobs.
Best not to deal with Brazil, imo.
We should be glad.
good old sh1tpants joe.
“Boeing lost this program and they need to rethink why they moved their HQs to Chicago.”
And just what does the location of Boeing’s HQ have to do with any of this? The fact of the matter is Stonceifer (former Boeing CEO), moved the HQ to Chicago to facilitate seeing his daughter.
Perhaps this is an expression of Brazil (member of BRIC) exerting their desire to become more “respected” and kept in the loop.
I can’t imagine that knowledge of the intelligence gathering technology eluded Brazil’s top echelon of government insiders.
Sort of a status issue?
It’s sad that foreign leaders take being spied on by the US government more seriously than US citizens do. After all, governments spying on each other is as old as national governments themselves are. But governments spying comprehensively on their own citizens is something usually associated with fascist or totalitarian dictatorships - until the post-9/11 United States.
Well, two years ago Brazil was “ready to sign” for French Rafales then backed out of the deal. I doubt that the NSA spying scandal had anything to do with Brazil’s decision. They were replacing single engine F-5s, and the JAS Grippen is the most logical replacement in terms of size, capabilities, and cost.