Thursday, November 3, 2011

MMRCA, the last US attempt to hijack the deal

48h before the openning of the 2 finalists' bids, the US departement has initiated a last attempt to win the contest by proposing (again) the F-35 to indian authorities.
[...] India has demonstrated its interest in upgrading its inventory of fighter aircraft. It intends to
purchase 126 medium multi-role combat aircraft and is working with Russia on the development
of the Sukhoi/HAL Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA). The U.S. F-16 and F-18
competed, but were not down-selected, in the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA)
competition in April 2011. Despite this setback, we believe U.S. aircraft, such as the Joint Strike
Fighter (JSF), to be the best in the world. Should India indicate interest in the JSF, the United
States would be prepared to provide information on the JSF and its requirements (infrastructure,
security, etc.) to support India’s future planning. [...]

Honnestly I don't really understand the meaning or the purpose of such a move. Do they really expect india to cancel the MMRCA process if Dassault and Eurofighter bids are too high ? If so, a F-35 proposal would probably be out of the MMRCA price range too. Besides, India is already involved in a partnership with Russia to develop its own stealth medium and heavy fighters. It this context, it is difficult to imagine the US accepting to provide sensitive F-35 technology to India unless they intend to provide a F-35 "lite" with downgraded stealth capabilities.

Also read flightglobal Analysis


  1. These reports and their supporting propaganda pieces exhibit a fundamental flaw in how sections of the US establishment understand India and other countries. There are strong domestic dynamics in such countries which cannot be ignored. The current Indian government, plagued as it is by graft charges, would be skewered if it were to cancel the MMRCA and go for a single-window purchase of the JSF, whatever its cost. And any US cut to the JSF (expected in a month or two) would seriously jack up costs.

  2. Ridiculous! Typical American arrogance!!