Wednesday, April 28, 2004
A story by Brendan Nicholson in the SSS headlined "Canberra bought unwanted helicopters" starts:
Australia paid the US $1.1 billion for a squadron of Seasprite helicopters from a mothballed fleet that the Americans tried unsuccessfully to give away to other countries.and then goes on to explain that some helicopters that had been retired from US service were offered to some other countries for nothing (presumably with a nice little earner on parts and maintenance for some US manufacturers). But...
the Seasprites sold to Australia had been rebuilt and were re-armed with far more sophisticated weapons than those given to the developing countriesSo Australia did not pay "US $1.1 billion for a squadron of Seasprite helicopters from a mothballed fleet" just as anyone who has been following this story knows.
Indeed, given the ADFs' success with F-111's, it may be a good strategy for us to use smarter versions of old hardware. We seem to be pretty good at it.
The real issue with the Super Seasprites is that we paid for these aircraft in advance and we had been paying maintenance bills on them before they were "fully" delivered.
A worthless article, Brendan.