Belgium considers Lockheed F-35 to replace F-16s

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Bjorn

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Unread post15 Jan 2015, 21:14

@Corsair1963

I don't know where you reside, but stating this obviously shows you are not informed about the way we spend our money here. Why I see no need for 2% GDP? We have another problem and it is called splintering. European countries spend about 60% of the budget the US spends on defense and it only gets 30% of the US's output. So there's a huge potential for efficiency improvement. If we should do that and we would raise the budget to that level we would get that 60% output. That is enough for me. We don't need to compete with the US. We should be able to ensure we are safe ourselves and be able to make a fist if we need to.

@Vilters

You are right about the training aircraft. I didn't mention those. But they will be a minor investment because it is already known that we won't replace them on ourselves. We are in a mutual training program with France and a number of countries are set to join that training program with a pooled buy. We will not pay for more than 5-7 aircraft of that pool. So not that much of an investment. If needed at all. When we would abolish our fighters (still not sure whether F-16 replacement will go through despite being mentioned at government level and procedure start, will believe it when first a/c hits the tarmac in 2022 or so), we don't need pilots to fly them either. Could do with about 2-3 aircraft to furfill our training needs.

I don't per se say that the A400M is the wrong aircraft. But we surely bought too many. About 4-5 will do I think. Instead we should have invested - together with for example the Netherlands - in 2-3 C-17s for strategic transport. Or extend the pool of NATO C-17s at Papa AB.

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Unread post15 Jan 2015, 23:53

Bjorn wrote:@Corsair1963

I don't know where you reside, but stating this obviously shows you are not informed about the way we spend our money here. Why I see no need for 2% GDP? We have another problem and it is called splintering. European countries spend about 60% of the budget the US spends on defense and it only gets 30% of the US's output. So there's a huge potential for efficiency improvement. If we should do that and we would raise the budget to that level we would get that 60% output. That is enough for me. We don't need to compete with the US. We should be able to ensure we are safe ourselves and be able to make a fist if we need to.

@Vilters

You are right about the training aircraft. I didn't mention those. But they will be a minor investment because it is already known that we won't replace them on ourselves. We are in a mutual training program with France and a number of countries are set to join that training program with a pooled buy. We will not pay for more than 5-7 aircraft of that pool. So not that much of an investment. If needed at all. When we would abolish our fighters (still not sure whether F-16 replacement will go through despite being mentioned at government level and procedure start, will believe it when first a/c hits the tarmac in 2022 or so), we don't need pilots to fly them either. Could do with about 2-3 aircraft to furfill our training needs.

I don't per se say that the A400M is the wrong aircraft. But we surely bought too many. About 4-5 will do I think. Instead we should have invested - together with for example the Netherlands - in 2-3 C-17s for strategic transport. Or extend the pool of NATO C-17s at Papa AB.

Greets,


So what do you think is causing Belgium's inefficiency?
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Unread post16 Jan 2015, 02:55

This video explains all about Belgium.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ceg6NQKHd70
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Unread post16 Jan 2015, 03:04

:mrgreen: Switzerland but a little less wealthy? That is Belgique? :devil: At least the Belgickans eat and make my favourite foodstuffs. Chips and Chocolate. COOL. :doh:
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post05 Mar 2015, 12:45

Benelux countries sign air defence pact
05 Mar 2015 Eric Maurice

"The three Benelux countries, Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg, Wednesday (4 March) agreed to share surveillance and protection of their air spaces, in the first agreement of its kind among EU countries.

Starting from 2017, Belgian and Dutch air forces will take turn to monitor the Benelux airspace. Luxembourg has no military airforce and will only open its air space to its neighbours’ jets.

The common missions will involve the so-called 'Renegade' procedure aimed at identifying suspect civil aircrafts that might pose a terrorist threat.

"The agreement is a step forward in the intensification of European military cooperation", said Belgian prime minister Charles Michel in a statement....

...This agreement for shared missions will come as a relief for the Dutch air force. The old F16 fleet is supposed to be replaced by 2019 by new F35 jets, but the programme has been running late and costs have rocketed.

Belgium also plans to renew its F16 fleet by 2018. The French Rafale is a candidate but the enhanced cooperation with Netherlands might tilt the decision towards the American F-35."

Source: http://www.sbs.com.au/ondemand/video/11 ... The-Bridge
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post05 Mar 2015, 13:14

spazsinbad wrote:At least the Belgickans eat and make my favourite foodstuffs. Chips and Chocolate. COOL. :doh:


Do not forget the Belgium beers... :pint:
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Unread post05 Mar 2015, 13:40

:mrgreen: Heheh. I gave up smokin' and drinkin' a long time ago but not the chocs or chips! :devil:
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post09 Sep 2015, 20:41

"Belgium Forced to Buy F-35 If Nuclear Strike Mission Maintained"
(Source: L’Avenir; published April 19, 2015

Source:
http://www.defense-aerospace.com/articl ... ssion.html

(Published in French; unofficial translation by Defense-Aerospace.com)
How will we replace our F-16 fighter-bombers? Experts and industry officials suggest that a single criterion contained in the specification - the ability to carry a nuclear bomb - may swing the competition to favor the American F-35 over its four potential competitors.

"If the nuclear requirement is included in the Request for Proposal, the tender that the Defence ministry must issue in the autumn), the door is wide open for the F-35,” an industry officials told the Belga news agency.

Of the five aircraft currently competing to replace, from 2023, the aging F-16s (Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II; Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet; Dassault Aviation Rafale F3R; Saab JAS-39E/F Gripen and Airbus Group Eurofighter), only the F-35 will be able to operate the nuclear strike mission carrying the American B-61 nuclear free-fall bomb.

For decades, Belgium has assumed nuclear missions within NATO, but these were gradually reduced to one, assigned to fighter-bombers stationed at Kleine-Brogel air base (F-84E, F-104G and since 1982 the F-16A). These aircraft are able to carry and drop the American B-61 nuclear bomb, although the presence of these weapons on Belgian air bases - ten to twenty bombs, according to unofficial estimates - is generally "neither confirmed nor denied."

The current Minister of Defense, Steven Vandeput (N-VA), suggested last month that the precise requirements to be answered aircraft to succeed the F-16 will be identified in the strategic plan that he is preparing to submit to the government cabinet in the coming weeks.

"The technical specifications depend on the level of commitment, and we will define in the strategic plan exactly what is expected of the new fighter," he told the Parliamentary Defense Committee, without however providing any further clarification.

If Belgium decided to retain its only remaining nuclear task, and if the RFP confirms this requirement, only the F-35A - the conventional take-off and landing version of the new American Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) will be compliant.

This aircraft was designed for a dual role (conventional and nuclear) and should be able to carry the B-61 nuclear bomb later in its development, probably after 2022. This is not the case for the other contenders for the Belgian competition, with the exception of the French Rafale.

The Boeing F-18E Super Hornet is not nuclear-capable, Hans Kristensen, a nuclear expert at the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) told Belga on Thursday. The Swedish government for its part prohibits any Gripen sales that could involve a nuclear role. As for the Airbus Group’s Eurofighter, it was conceived as an interceptor and is only acquiring attack capabilities very slowly. No European user (Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Spain and Austria) has however considered giving it a nuclear capability.

There remains the case of the French Rafale. This aircraft, which its manufacturer describes as "omnirole," is capable of carrying a nuclear weapon, this is the ASMP-A missile (improved medium range air-to-ground missile), developed in France for France’s nuclear forces, and thus not easily exportable. As for the integration of the American B-61 on the Rafale, it appears as politically unrealistic and financially costly, say industrialists and experts.


(EDITOR’S NOTE: Some observers say the Belgian defense staff is using the nuclear argument to push its preferred fighter, the F-35, without appearing to meddle in the selection process.
Others say that the nuclear issue is a red herring, and that the decision rests on whether the Belgian government wants to align its air force with the Netherlands (F-35) or with France, in which case it would go with Rafale.
In both cases, aircraft performance and price are likely to have very little influence on the final decision.)
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m

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Unread post11 Sep 2015, 04:37

tritonprime wrote:"Belgium Forced to Buy F-35 If Nuclear Strike Mission Maintained"
(Source: L’Avenir; published April 19, 2015

Source:
http://www.defense-aerospace.com/articl ... ssion.html

(Published in French; unofficial translation by Defense-Aerospace.com)
How will we replace our F-16 fighter-bombers? Experts and industry officials suggest that a single criterion contained in the specification - the ability to carry a nuclear bomb - may swing the competition to favor the American F-35 over its four potential competitors.

"If the nuclear requirement is included in the Request for Proposal, the tender that the Defence ministry must issue in the autumn), the door is wide open for the F-35,” an industry officials told the Belga news agency.

Of the five aircraft currently competing to replace, from 2023, the aging F-16s (Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II; Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet; Dassault Aviation Rafale F3R; Saab JAS-39E/F Gripen and Airbus Group Eurofighter), only the F-35 will be able to operate the nuclear strike mission carrying the American B-61 nuclear free-fall bomb.

For decades, Belgium has assumed nuclear missions within NATO, but these were gradually reduced to one, assigned to fighter-bombers stationed at Kleine-Brogel air base (F-84E, F-104G and since 1982 the F-16A). These aircraft are able to carry and drop the American B-61 nuclear bomb, although the presence of these weapons on Belgian air bases - ten to twenty bombs, according to unofficial estimates - is generally "neither confirmed nor denied."

The current Minister of Defense, Steven Vandeput (N-VA), suggested last month that the precise requirements to be answered aircraft to succeed the F-16 will be identified in the strategic plan that he is preparing to submit to the government cabinet in the coming weeks.

"The technical specifications depend on the level of commitment, and we will define in the strategic plan exactly what is expected of the new fighter," he told the Parliamentary Defense Committee, without however providing any further clarification.

If Belgium decided to retain its only remaining nuclear task, and if the RFP confirms this requirement, only the F-35A - the conventional take-off and landing version of the new American Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) will be compliant.

This aircraft was designed for a dual role (conventional and nuclear) and should be able to carry the B-61 nuclear bomb later in its development, probably after 2022. This is not the case for the other contenders for the Belgian competition, with the exception of the French Rafale.

The Boeing F-18E Super Hornet is not nuclear-capable, Hans Kristensen, a nuclear expert at the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) told Belga on Thursday. The Swedish government for its part prohibits any Gripen sales that could involve a nuclear role. As for the Airbus Group’s Eurofighter, it was conceived as an interceptor and is only acquiring attack capabilities very slowly. No European user (Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Spain and Austria) has however considered giving it a nuclear capability.

There remains the case of the French Rafale. This aircraft, which its manufacturer describes as "omnirole," is capable of carrying a nuclear weapon, this is the ASMP-A missile (improved medium range air-to-ground missile), developed in France for France’s nuclear forces, and thus not easily exportable. As for the integration of the American B-61 on the Rafale, it appears as politically unrealistic and financially costly, say industrialists and experts.


(EDITOR’S NOTE: Some observers say the Belgian defense staff is using the nuclear argument to push its preferred fighter, the F-35, without appearing to meddle in the selection process.
Others say that the nuclear issue is a red herring, and that the decision rests on whether the Belgian government wants to align its air force with the Netherlands (F-35) or with France, in which case it would go with Rafale.
In both cases, aircraft performance and price are likely to have very little influence on the final decision.)

Not specifically with the Netherlands, but as well with the other European F35 users: Norway, Denmark, UK.
It seems not understood in Belgium this cooperation will problably be a much stronger cooperation then EPAF. Belgium would join this group.
Cooperation very closely (integration) only with the Dutch would not be easy. Integration is hardly impossible for two reasons: Belgium is not a levelpartner, as well the Dutch are a level 2 partner. A lot of Information could not be given to the BAF (forbidden). As well as results of the IOT&E phase. The BAF would also have no influence or voice in coming updates or whatever.

The nucleair argument? It was not a problem in the 70's. Belgium preferred the Mirage instead of the F16.
Secondly, the Germans will probably stop with a nuceair task when the Tornado will be phased out.
Third, it's not yet 100 percent sure the F35 will get a nucleair task.
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Unread post23 Sep 2015, 20:44

http://brusselstimes.com/business/4102/ ... eed-martin
Belgium signs agreement with LM to replace its F-16
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Unread post18 Nov 2015, 19:04

spazsinbad posted the information from this article about Denmark in another topic, here is the information concerning Belgium...


"Milestones Close For Denmark And Belgium Fighter Contests"
Nov 18, 2015 Bill Sweetman | Aerospace Daily & Defense Report

Source:
http://aviationweek.com/defense/milesto ... r-contests

...Belgium, meanwhile, is believed to be starting a process aimed at a decision before April-May 2018, within the lifespan of the current government. So far, five candidates—JSF, the Super Hornet, Saab Gripen, Dassault Rafale and Eurofighter Typhoon—are participating. At this point, it appears that Belgium—whose F-16s are currently tasked with delivering U.S.-controlled B61 nuclear weapons stored in Belgium—will not include nuclear capability in the RFP, a condition that would likely eliminate both Rafale and Gripen. The nation will decide separately what to do about the weapons, which would have to be replaced in any event by the new, guided B61-12.
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Unread post12 Jan 2016, 04:13

Unfortunately this is the English translation from GOOGLE from: http://www.air-cosmos.com/la-belgique-f ... mbat-53395
Belgium sets the contours of his army by 2030, reduced to 34 combat aircraft
04 Jan 2016 Gérard Gaudin

"Thirty-four combat aircraft, six drones - the type of which remains to choose - two frigates, six minesweepers and vehicles for land units, all to gain by 2030 to $ 9.2 billion euros. This is the Christmas gift that the Belgian government coalition was in late December, after months of palaver, its armed forces.

The restricted ministerial committee, which brings together key ministers finally approved the "Strategic Plan" to fifteen years presented by the defense minister, the Flemish nationalist Steven Vandeput. But in one version planed from the initial project, since the percentage of military spending to GDP will be only about 1.3 at end of period. Against 1.6% in the most ambitious version of departure and while NATO insists on increasing the standard of 2% for its member states, to achieve in 2024.

The 9.2 billion euros of investment will be used to buy 34 fighter-bombers - to succeed the 56 aging F-16 currently in operation - two frigates (to replace the two buildings used to redeemed Netherlands in the early 2000s), six minesweepers - a similar number to the current fleet - and six drones, two in 2021 and four in 2030. No material choices have been made yet.

Source: https://translate.google.com.au/transla ... edit-text=
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post13 Jan 2016, 06:53

Just one more customer likely to purchase the F-35... :D
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Unread post15 Feb 2016, 00:19

Belgian F-16 replacement process to start by mid-year
12 Feb 2016 Beth Stevenson

"A request for proposals (RFP) to launch off Belgium’s search to replace its 59-strong Lockheed Martin F-16A/B fleet is expected “this summer”, with the schedule to allow for a new fighter to be in service by 2025, a source close to the programme has revealed.

Two years ago, Brussels issued a study request to help shape what it would require from a fighter replacement, and defence minister Steven Vandeput announced in late December that through a strategic plan currently being approved, 34 new fighters would be acquired.

According to the programme source, the project will be valued at €3.6 billion ($4 billion) but it is not clear whether the amount includes maintenance and support costs.

An RFP will have to be released by mid-2016 for Belgium to meet its target dates. For deliveries to begin by 2023, a contract will have to be awarded by 2018 to allow for production and testing. A general election in 2019 in Belgium will add to the need to stick to deadlines and award the contract before a potential change of government...."

Source: https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... ea-421877/
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post31 May 2016, 23:38

RNLAF commander pushes for F-35-based Joint air force with Belgium
30 May 2016 Nathan Gain

"The Dutch air force commander invited himself in the debate on the successor of Belgian Air Force’s F-16 fleet. General Alexander Schnitger suggested on Flemish - VRT that Belgium purchase the same type of aircraft selected by the Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF) – the F-35 Lightning II – to create a joint Dutch-Belgian air force.

”I see significant benefits in building (military) cooperation between our two countries,” he said on the Flemish public channel, referring to the joint missions the two air forces would conduct. "Why not building a strong sole air force from two small ones,” added Schnitger. "From my perspective this would naturally help a lot if we finally choose the same type of fighter as this would facilitate integration,” he said....

...Belgium approved in last December the purchase of 34 new fighter aircraft to be acquired from Spring 2018 for an amount of 3,573 billion euros...."

Source: http://www.airrecognition.com/index.php ... lgium.html
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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