Photo: Andrés Ramírez / Wikimedia
When a country wants to buy a weapon system made for the United States, there’s a very specific process that has to happen. They can’t talk directly to the manufacturer. The nation must use the Pentagon as an intermediary, and Congress has to be alerted of the sale before it goes down.Yesterday, the Pentagon told congress of five huge sales that they want to make. The countries are all in important regions — they border Syria or Iran, or are in the south Pacific, or are fighting a vicious cartel war. And each of them wants a lot of new firepower.
Here are just some of the sales that make the U.S. the world’s biggest arms dealer:
Photo: Darkone / wikimedia
PATRIOT Advanced Capability missiles to Kuwait for $4.2 billionKuwait wants 60 PATRIOT Advanced Capability missiles with parts, equipment, and training.
They would pay $4.2 billion for the deal.
The missiles come with 4 radars, 4 engagement control stations, 20 Launching Stations, and logistic support.
Kuwait has been very friendly to the United States, and the defence Department sees a use for the missiles in “deterring regional threats,” like neighbouring Iran. Kuwait already has the PATRIOT Advanced Capability missile in its forces. Raytheon and Lockheed Martin will manufacture.
Photo: Fort Carson PAO / flickr
FIREFINDER Radars to Iraq for $428 millionThe FIREFINDER system is a mobile radar unit manufactured by Raytheon and L-3. It is designed to track the trajectory of incoming artillery and rocket fire to find the location of the shooter.
As it stands, the only forces using the system are the United States Army, Marine Corps, and the Australian Army.
Photo: kingair42 / flickr
UH-60M Black Hawk Helicopters to Thailand for $235 millionThe Government of Thailand wants four advanced UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters and is planning to shell out $235 million.
Thailand is modernizing its armed forces, and the nation has been friendly to the U.S. in recent years.
Sikorsky Helicopter of the United Technologies Corporation and GE will be the prime contractors.
The UH-60M includes an improved design of the initial Black Hawk UH-60A helicopter. It was introduced in 2006, and includes a new rotor design and an improved computer system.
UH-60L Black Hawk Helicopters to Colombia for $87 millionColombia wants five UH-60L Black Hawk helicopters and parts. They would pay $87 million. The sale includes 10 T700 General Electric engines and assorted equipment.
Colombia is currently in the process of modernizing its armed forces. The continued war against the powerful cartels have bled Colombia over the past several years, and the U.S. hopes that the sale could cement Colombia as “an important force for political stability and economic progress in South America.”
Colombia already operates the UH-60.
Photo: 111 Emergency / wikimedia
Huey II Helicopters to Lebanon for $63 millionLebanon wants six Huey II helicopters with equipment, parts, and training. They would pay $63 million.
Lebanon’s main argument for the sale is that need the helicopters to enforce United Nations Security Council Resolution 1701, which put an end to the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict and tasked Lebanon with keeping the peace internally.
Likewise, UN Security Council Resolution 1559 expelled all foreign forces in Lebanon and mandated free and fair elections in 2004. So it seems Lebanon needs the choppers to keep the peace.
The Huey II is a modified kit to the Bell Helicopter Huey UH-1H Iroquois helicopter.
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