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Finnish Fighter Competition

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Finnish Fighter Competition

Old 25th Nov 2017, 04:53
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Finnish Fighter Competition

Looks like a pretty standard list of the current available aircraft. Replace their current F-18s with F/A-18E/F/G, the other options being F-35A, Gripe, Rafale and Typhoon.

Canít see anything but the F-18 and Gripen being within their budget for 64 airframes.

MoD: At least 64 fighter jets needed to defend Finland

Finland's Ministry of Defence plans to send out invitations to tender for the purchase of 64 new fighter jets. The new jets will replace the current stock of 64 F/A-18 Hornet jets, which have served the Finnish military since 1992. The defence report, which was approved by the Parliament in February, says that the readiness of the current fleet must be fully maintained after the procurement.

"We have interpreted that to mean 64 fighter jets. Because the new jets are not faster and can't stay up in the air any longer than the current ones, we will require the same number of jets to maintain the performance of our air defence", says Lauri Puranen from the Ministry. "That is the minimum number we need to defend a country of this size."

Parliament has decided that it will spend between 7 and 10 billion euros the new jets, which will make the acquisition the most purchase by Finland ever. The ministry said it will send out invitations to tender in early 2018 to Boeing and Lockheed Martin from the US, Saab from Sweden, Dessault Aviation in France and the British-European BAE Systems.

The new government taking up office in 2019 will make a decision about purchasing fighter jets to replace the current stock of Hornet jets at the end of 2021. The current fleet will be retired by 2030.....
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Old 25th Nov 2017, 18:37
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Somewhat surprised that no Russian jet is on the short list.
China could conceivably make an offer as well, but Russia and Finland have long had mutually beneficial relations and this purchase is an opportunity to put things back on track.
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Old 25th Nov 2017, 19:37
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Don’t be. Do a search over Finnish fears of Putin and a resurgent Russia. Their links with NATO have increased substantially, and to almost a defence pact with Norway and Sweden.
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Old 25th Nov 2017, 20:52
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I’m struggling to think of an export customer who actually gets meaningful support from Russia post-sale. Even without the politics a Russian-sourced FJ fleet can be problematic.
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Old 25th Nov 2017, 22:15
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And of course the Americans would never dream of cutting off spare parts to a customer who didn't toe their line. No, perish the thought.
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Old 25th Nov 2017, 22:28
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Originally Posted by Royalistflyer View Post
And of course the Americans would never dream of cutting off spare parts to a customer who didn't toe their line. No, perish the thought.
The UK has cut off support to at least one customer who was involved in active operations in the past. The customer involved was historically very close to UK.
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Old 25th Nov 2017, 22:53
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Of course it did,so there's no need to sneer at the Russians then
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Old 26th Nov 2017, 10:52
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Originally Posted by Royalistflyer View Post
And of course the Americans would never dream of cutting off spare parts to a customer who didn't toe their line. No, perish the thought.
Reading glasses required as I did say 'even without the politics'.

US & European aviation does have the capacity and resources to support their export jets where as Russia struggles to do so. Those who purchase a Russian product often finds themselves with a pile of dead engines, a brace of unsupported LRUs and a wall of silence over technical issues.

Even those who have paid handsomely for their aircraft and achieved contractual through-life support have had considerable issues (e.g. India). Those without such muscle usually fair much worse. Often this includes Russian forces.

Again, I am not questioning the ability for the US and Europe to turn-off the support tap, just noting the inability for Russia to turn the tap on in the first place.
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Old 26th Nov 2017, 11:04
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Originally Posted by Just This Once... View Post
... Often this includes Russian forces.
....

Change present indefinite (tense) to past indefinite, or, better yet, to past perfect.


Sounds like a 10-20 year old stuff.
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Old 26th Nov 2017, 12:48
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Not really Van, things were still pretty bad in 2013, even with a number of years of stimulus. Looking back with the clarity of hindsight it was probably 2014/15 that saw a marked improvement in the support, maintenance and availability to the more modern parts of the Russian Air Force. 2016 was arguably more impressive when the logistics system was given a serious pull-through. It is now possible to see a complete end-to-end (from manufacturer to frontline) deployable system for the Russian AF. Given the stretch on operational forces this new-found capability has not been reflected in export support.

The problem with rose-tinted glasses and pride is that it can mask what has been a massive and genuine improvement from what was a terrible position. The shift in genuine capability from 2012 to 2017 has been remarkable.
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Old 26th Nov 2017, 13:46
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Somewhat surprised that no Russian jet is on the short list.
Ties with NATO draw closer at a minimum, joining the organization even a possibility, the common sense approach would be to purchase kit that would intergrate with a minimum of fuss.
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Old 26th Nov 2017, 23:46
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Originally Posted by West Coast View Post
Ties with NATO draw closer at a minimum, joining the organization even a possibility, the common sense approach would be to purchase kit that would intergrate with a minimum of fuss.
NATO ties may not be in Finlands interest.
The country has done best acting as Russia's 'window to the west', a role hard to sustain if they join NATO. Certainly Finland is suffering currently because Russia is not buying as much from them as before. Politicians are surely conscious of that aspect.
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Old 27th Nov 2017, 00:26
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Maybe, the obvious being that any desire to join NATO, however unpopular is driven by Vlad’s expansionism. A relationship built on fear is hardly advantageous to Finland.
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Old 27th Nov 2017, 05:51
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Without trying to attract any more Russian trolls, the reason why Finland is not looking at any Russian aircraft is that they don’t trust them, refuse to sit on the fence any more, and are uncreasingly moving towards NATO membership. None an argument for or against, just a statement of fact.

https://www.politico.eu/article/finl...-another-look/

Last edited by ORAC; 27th Nov 2017 at 07:54.
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Old 27th Nov 2017, 07:31
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The Finns are VERY careful about Russia - as they are one of the few Western countries with a long border with them they have to be. Plus Finland does a lot of trade with Russia

It would be a major step to join NATO and I suspect they wouldn't gain much of an advantage TBH - I'd bet they'll stay in the current "fuzzy" relationship while still keeping their armed forces well equipped
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Old 27th Nov 2017, 15:33
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Finland crossed that rubicon when they joined the EU defence pact. The sky didn't fall in either.

Meanwhile the Ukrainian treaty with those friendly Russians didn't exactly last long.
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Old 27th Nov 2017, 16:23
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Ukraine was part of Russia up to 1991, Finland was never taken over by the Russians after it left in 1917 - not even in 1945 when it they could have had it for free

Sure it was in a sort of neutral no mans land from 1945 to 1991 but it seemed to suit both sides. Not everyone wants to be the site of a battle between the West & the East
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Old 27th Nov 2017, 16:26
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I'm sure Vlad is thankful to you HH for making his argument.
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Old 27th Nov 2017, 17:26
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Originally Posted by Heathrow Harry View Post
Ukraine was part of Russia up to 1991...
Nope, not true. Being occupied by Russia as part of the Soviet Union did not make it Russia. Just as the brief German occupation of Ukraine make it part of Germany.

As for your dates, well in 1994 Russia co-signed a treaty to recognise the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Ukraine. 20 years later Russia's little green men helped themselves. Regarding facts:

"what does it say about the mendacity of Russian diplomacy and its contempt for international opinion when the foreign minister says something that can be proven wrong with less than 30 seconds of Google fact-checking?"
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Old 27th Nov 2017, 17:43
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Originally Posted by Royalistflyer View Post
And of course the Americans would never dream of cutting off spare parts to a customer who didn't toe their line. No, perish the thought.
There appears to be some confusion. There's zero doubt that Russia, the US, the UK, France, Germany, China, and basically any nation that exports military gear could and likely would withdraw support of those weapons under certain political conditions. The REAL question is whether those "conditions" are more likely to arise for the Finns from the Americans, the Europeans, or the Russians. The answer is obvious.

And this ignores the difficulty Russian industry has in providing through life support to their own armed forces in the first place. Never mind to export customers.
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