Pressure increases on [Canada] to stay or leave F-35 program

Program progress, politics, orders, and speculation
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Corsair1963

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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 07:12

Likely down to F-35 (performance) and Super Hornet (price)....
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ricnunes

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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 15:00

kimjongnumbaun wrote:In flight school, I went through a 5E class on being a POW. This was lessons learned from those taken prisoner in Vietnam, Desert Storm, and Somalia. This information was paid for in blood. It would not surprise me that the 5E would be unwilling to share information when the trading partner would not share equally valuable information that was paid for at the same price.


First of all thanks for your insight.

However and again I don't believe for a second that any "5 eyes requirement" would be an eliminating factor for any fighter aircraft.
If I would have to guess, I would say that a fighter aircraft is just a very small piece or part of the "puzzle" which is composed by all platforms/assets that an intelligence community like the 5 eyes have at its disposal.

This being said and also hinted by others - like TGP data or EW/ELINT data - this can/should always be uploaded (in the case of EW/ELINT data) to any Canadian fighter aircraft (independently from whose the source) and downloaded (in the case of data like TGP or Radar) to any 5 eyes "intelligence facility".

And of course I also echo Xander's post.
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mixelflick

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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 16:25

335 pages in, I respectfully request a change to OP's thread title to...


Pressure decreases on [Canada] to stay or leave F-35 program.

Because they've done neither... :roll:
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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 17:42

ricnunes wrote:
Corsair1963 wrote:Honestly, shocking that Dassault pulled out.... :?


Actually I'm not shocked at all.
It seems that the only chance that the French have in winning competitions regarding the acquisition of certain/specific military equipment on western/NATO countries is by bypassing those same competition.
i.e. not entering in those same competitions where the customer would directly purchase the French equipment, this again without any competition.

Look at the fighter competition in Belgium for instance.
And actually the French also tried the same in Canada in the recent past where they offered their FREMM frigate (as the Canadian Future Surface Combatant ship) but only if it did avoid competition - once it was decided to keep with the competition the French withdraw their Frigate from it. Oh, these French.... :roll:


Now regarding the Canadian future fighter aircraft competition, I just hope that Saab follows the same trend and who knows, hopefully even Airbus as well...

It's not a great secret that Canadian and Belgian competitions (among other) put much more weight on the political factor, beyond pure strategic partnership and technical requirements. We have two countries that have an extremely tight bond with the US (EPAF for BE, NORAD and other very close cooperation for CA). Dassault is a small company with limited financial ressources, and for the political factors stated above, the French government is very well aware that it stands little chance and that it's not very productive to try to weigh with politics. Dassault has been fucked in the butt a couple of times when technical evaluations were very favorable for the Rafale, but political considerations led to reevaluation (SK, SG...). It's a purely rational decision and not some unhappy, angry kid move as some of you like to believe.

It greatly contrasts with the FI procurement process, which seems (to me) to be the most balanced evaluation, more than I believe we have ever seen. Dassault has no reason to withdraw from it, as it (and France) has serious arguments in its favor - likewise for other contenders. The very recent book Paras hävittäjä Suomelle (Best fighter for Finland) offers some great insight about it.

ricnunes wrote:
hythelday wrote:How is Five Eyes and intelligence sharing relevant to fighters? US would not accept pictures made by Talios TGP?


The "Five Eyes excuse" is only that: A poorly invented excuse and pure BS!

As far as I know Belgium doesn't belong to the five eyes, does it?? So there you go... :wink:

No, but that doesn't mean Belgium is any less close to USA when it comes to the defense aerospace component.

And indeed, the Five Eyes excuse is BS. Dassault has always been open to integrate foreign, including US, weaponry and equipment, and has done so with the Sniper ATP (QA). For reasons cited about however, they are very aware than it is very unlikely to have a green light from the Americans to integrate their equipment to the benefit of countries that are such closely integrated within USA's military and industrial complex (CA).

hythelday wrote:In this sense Finland will be watershed eval. Non-NATO, non-JSF partner, non-regular Foreign Military Aid client (the Israel excuse), nor is it a prominent regional ally (Australia, Japan, ROK excuse). Dassault has no leeway there - withdraw and receive a FOURTH strike (after Belgium, Denmark, Canada) or stay and lose on all counts in the most fair competition they will ever have.

These factors you have very rightly quoted are double-edged for any of the contender, and are among the many reasons why the JSF is much more at risk in the FI procurement evaluation, when it comes to security of supply. Also, US political and strategical (relative) withdrawal and (somewhat) hostility to EU sovereignty, combined to the strengthening (w/ UK/JEF, SE) or building (w/ FR/EI2) of regional partnership with FI is another factor that is frankly not in favor of the JSF. Gotta thank Mister Trump for that.

But I digress, there's a FI evaluation dedicated thread.
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ricnunes

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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 19:00

f4u7_corsair wrote:It's not a great secret that Canadian and Belgian competitions (among other) put much more weight on the political factor, beyond pure strategic partnership and technical requirements. We have two countries that have an extremely tight bond with the US (EPAF for BE, NORAD and other very close cooperation for CA). Dassault is a small company with limited financial ressources, and for the political factors stated above, the French government is very well aware that it stands little chance and that it's not very productive to try to weigh with politics. Dassault has been fucked in the butt a couple of times when technical evaluations were very favorable for the Rafale, but political considerations led to reevaluation (SK, SG...). It's a purely rational decision and not some unhappy, angry kid move as some of you like to believe.


To be honest I tend to agree with your post with the exception of the paragraphs that I'm quoting above and below which while I don't completely disagree I also don't completely agree.
For instance, I trend to disagree (or "disbelieve" is probably a better word?) with you that there were instances (South Korea and/or Singapore) where the Rafale was at a clear advantage but due to some "conspiracy" they ended up losing.

But yes, I fully agree with you that regarding Canada which is historically, politically, military closed tied to the USA that the chances of a non-US aircraft to win there are very, very slim but don't forget that this also and equally affects the Typhoon and Gripen NG (which by the way, they are still on the "race").

Regarding Belgium I don't agree much. You know that Belgium operates lots of French military equipment, right?
Belgium also historically operated French aircraft like for example the Mirage 5. So the US and French are IMO pretty much tied when it comes to military ties (pun intended) with Belgium. :wink:

And what to say about Brazil for example?? A country that has a clear and very close military ties with France, where it historically purchased lots of equipment from it such as Mirage III and Mirage 2000 and currently helicopters such as the Cougar and in the future Submarines (Scorpène-class), etc...
Yet here the Rafale also lost while being considered by many/most the favorite contender of all 3 finalists (Rafale, Super Hornet and Gripen NG). What was the excuse for that?

The fact (it seems) is that the Rafale is a quite expensive aircraft and apparently second only in terms of being expensive to the Eurofighter Typhoon and this alone makes a huge diference regarding potential export successes (or failures).

Moreover let's look at the Rafale exports. They were only exported to Egypt, Qatar and India. The first two where pure and simply political purchases where there wasn't any sort of a proper competition while regarding India the only "competition" where the Rafale managed to win was basically the "text book" on how NOT to perform a competition (riddled with corruption, ever changing requirements, etc...).

So and please don't get me wrong but I find very puzzling when someone defends that Dassault dropped the Canadian and Belgium competitions and lost the vast majority of competitions due to "political meddling" when the same Dassault only managed to win (with the Rafale) due and directly due to some "real and direct political meddling"...

Perhaps it's time to admit what while the Rafale is indeed a great looking aircraft (IMO, between my favorite 4th gen fighter aircraft) the fact is that other competitors have been generally better where depending on the competition, the competitors ending up being either cheaper or more capable or both (when it comes to the F-35 for example).


f4u7_corsair wrote:It greatly contrasts with the FI procurement process, which seems (to me) to be the most balanced evaluation, more than I believe we have ever seen. Dassault has no reason to withdraw from it, as it (and France) has serious arguments in its favor - likewise for other contenders. The very recent book Paras hävittäjä Suomelle (Best fighter for Finland) offers some great insight about it.


When/if the Rafale loses in Finland than I wonder what would be the excuse? (my guess is that they'll be more the same - "more sort of political meddling"...)
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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 19:55

The sovereign data setup (threat libraries, labs in the US and US based pilot training^) might need some work regard to Finland. Otherwise I see no problems for JSF. Lockheed Martin has basically been the FDF's main supplier in the last decade (JASSM, Dragon Shield, GMLRS, MLRS).
Also the operating area is among the most difficult there is since Russian A2AD systems cover a sizable part of the country even from inside their own borders. It necessitates quality. The current F-18C/D buy was also done with the idea "the best quality this money buys".

^Even more pronounced if Growler was picked. In that case it would be guaranteed that those pilots would be trained at Whidbey, since everyone else is (RAAF & USN).

Connectivity with other elements of the FDF should be a major factor. The Finnish Navy is buying a set of four corvettes. LM Canada is in the running for the battle management software provider. There's also a DSCA clearance for Lockheed Martin's Mk41 Strike Length cells (but not sure deal). F-35 NIFC-CA etc. possibilities in this realm makes one salivate.
The Finnish Navy operates Link 16, 22 and JREAP. JSF fits like a glove in this regard.

Here's a quote which couöd provide some insight about the ambition in this regard:
The Link 22 program was initially conducted collaboratively by seven nations under the aegis of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The original seven nations were Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, the UK, and the United States, with the United States acting as the host nation. Spain has replaced the Netherlands as a NILE nation. Finland has recently entered the NILE nations group. Other NATO nations have chosen either Link 16 or Link 11 as their preferred TDL.


Aussie Link-22 project seems to be running in close proximity to the Finnish. "Fabio is the
current Multi Tactical Data Link (M-DLP) Project Engineering Manager supporting the ADFTA Link-22 trial
and the Finnish Navy Link-22 programmes." http://www.anzidlsoc.com.au/Link%2022%2 ... 0brief.pdf

Rafale's advantages coming into the competition could be related to Thales. The Finnish long and medium range radars are from Thales. Canada also was looking to replace some of theirs with the same Groundmaster 400 series, but Canadian procurement struck again. https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/canada ... -1.3145196

Rafale or should I say France in Belgium offer was quite outlandish. Now they seem to have reached a political face saving measure in a used trucks deal. http://www.defense-aerospace.com/articl ... icles.html

Rafale's win is likely not in their own hands. To make it even possible they probably need some kind of armament sharing deal because buying everything new unique to the Rafale at once is too expensive. For Canada and Finland at least.

TL:DR Yes, the 5E smells like bs also to me, but the Belgian case already proved that the French gov is pressuring Dassault to stay in certain competitions beyond the point where they deem it can't be won.
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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 20:51

Training in the US is just a cost savings issue. Several Partners are transitioning to an in-country pilot training program.

On the issue of the labs:

Partner nations will also be building facilities to reprogram their F-35s in the United States, Bogdan said. However, foreign nations will not have unsupervised access to the and its critical mission systems. “They will put people in those labs, we will put people in those labs,” Bogdan said.

“We together—jointly—will build there the brains of the airplane for them.”

However, each partner nation will be able to customize their own aircraft for their particular regions and the specific threats they will face.

https://news.usni.org/2014/11/04/foreig ... r-software
"The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."
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magitsu

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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 20:58

Yeah, I'm just wondering whether Israel also has lab in the US. Never seen anything about that mentioned. The partners have two shared labs and all FMS are supposed to be in one.

Anyway, these are important issues, but completely solvable ones at that. The stalls or the cases of trying too much seem to be largely political.
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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 21:00

Some more info posted by our friends over at B4FC (Warriormind556 and Harry):

Image

Rest of the presentation:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/12URh-P ... 7FBIwr4Mhg

Some over there are thinking it's already over since the RFP wants upgrade path to 2060 and beyond. :mrgreen:
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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 21:05

2060 ? Typhoon, Super Hornet and Gripen all distant memories then or ageing out of production airframes.
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XanderCrews

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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 22:12

Corsair1963 wrote:Likely down to F-35 (performance) and Super Hornet (price)....



interim attempt killed the price argument for the Super Hornet.
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Unread post08 Nov 2018, 23:43

f4u7_corsair wrote:It's not a great secret that Canadian and Belgian competitions (among other) put much more weight on the political factor, beyond pure strategic partnership and technical requirements. We have two countries that have an extremely tight bond with the US (EPAF for BE, NORAD and other very close cooperation for CA). Dassault is a small company with limited financial ressources, and for the political factors stated above, the French government is very well aware that it stands little chance and that it's not very productive to try to weigh with politics. Dassault has been fucked in the butt a couple of times when technical evaluations were very favorable for the Rafale, but political considerations led to reevaluation (SK, SG...). It's a purely rational decision and not some unhappy, angry kid move as some of you like to believe.


Its almost like there is more to life than just operational performance.

The bottom line with airplane and indeed a lot of things is that "the rich get richer" The more of something is produced and the more popular it becomes the options are created for it, the cheaper it gets etc. Theres a reason theres 4000 F-16s and not even 400 Gripens.

JSF program was built from the start to be a juggernaut. You can call it whatever. Thats why I'm not surprised when the JSF wins. And people can cry and shout "politics" until theyve sucked their little thumbs right off their hands.


I have no shame about it. US and its allies have invested big bucks into JSF. It has unmatchable industrial opportunities. The only time its not picked is when countries (Like Canada) decide to put politics in front of sense. From a military and economical and industrial perspective its a no brainer. It was so obvious in fact Canada sole sourced it. And its still so obvious that they won't actually LEAVE the program. its a game. Theyre going to buy it.
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Unread post09 Nov 2018, 01:04

Bombardier cutting 5k jobs has got to be a political priority right now. I wonder whose plans suit the best to tackle this political scare (which seems to be the 1st priority in Canada over defence).

2,5k in Quebec, 600 in Ontario, 2k in other countries.
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Unread post09 Nov 2018, 05:08

XanderCrews wrote:...
JSF program was built from the start to be a juggernaut. ...
I have no shame about it. US and its allies have invested big bucks into JSF. ...


Sometimes it's worth reminding ourselve when we compare apples and oranges ...

IGNORING THE$BILLIONS AND BILLIONS THE US SPENT ...
The European (and Aussies) allies spent $4.3B+ on developing the F-35.

The Gripen R&D was a little less than $2B. The coins the allies threw in were twice as much as the full investment by Sweden. Usually even with waste you tend to get what you pay for. Odds are they got something for the big bucks. The Eurocanards aren't even close in the effort seen in the F-35 program. Just look at the SDD testing flying hours. Some countries don't have that many hours on their operational fleets.

Just saying,
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Unread post09 Nov 2018, 07:59

Have to say though, if the contest was to be decided on air show performance then the Rafale would have been hard to beat:



What are the chances we'll ever see the F-35 in non gray colors?
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