F-35 UAE 2017

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Unread post05 Dec 2020, 05:41

US Officials Say They Can Seal F-35 Sale to UAE Before Trump Leaves
04 Dec 2020 Marcus Weisgerber

"But that would depend on both Congress and the Gulf state.

The U.S. could seal a controversial deal sale of F-35 fighter jets to the United Arab Emirates before President Trump exits the White House in January, a top defense official said Friday. “You ask if it’s possible? Absolutely it’s possible,” said Heidi Grant, who leads the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the Pentagon office that oversees foreign arms sales. Grant was asked by reporters at the Pentagon whether UAE could sign a contract for the planes before Jan. 20, when President-elect Joe Biden is to be sworn in as president. “But we don’t control it,” she said during a briefing at the Pentagon....

...Even if Congress does not block the sale, a number of bureaucratic hurdles remain before a contract for Lockheed Martin-made jets is finalized. UAE must submit a letter of offer and acceptance, or LOA, to the State Department. “That’s a bilateral process between the United States and UAE,” R. Clarke Cooper, the assistant secretary of state for Political-Military Affairs, said during Friday’s briefing. “That does not have a particular set timeline. Obviously, when we work on LOAs, in any case, the partners certainly would like to see it done sooner than later, but it does not have date specificity.”"

Source: https://www.defenseone.com/business/202 ... es/170516/
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Unread post09 Jan 2021, 01:24

US Could Finalize UAE F-35 Deal By Inauguration Day
08 Jan 2021 Paul McLeary

"Congress narrowly failed to block the controversial $23 billion deal the Trump administration forged with the UAE, and the Biden team has expressed skepticism, but the rush is on to wrap it up

WASHINGTON: The US and UAE might finalize the first of several contracts on a controversial $23.3 billion arms package before President-elect Joe Biden is sworn in on Jan. 20, a top State Department official said today.

“Everything’s in the trajectory for conclusion,” R. Clarke Cooper, assistant secretary of state for political-military affairs, told reporters Friday. “The sales, of course, have been well put together by the interagency and have cleared our Congress as well.”

The deal, which includes 50 F-35A fighters worth $10.4 billion, 18 MQ-9B drones at $2.97 billion, and $10 billion worth of air-to-air and air-to-ground munitions, drew criticism from some lawmakers, who worried about the possible erosion of Israeli military supremacy in the region.

Biden’s nominee to be Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, told reporters in November the pending sale “is something we would look at very, very carefully, and make sure that the QME (Qualitative Military Edge) is preserved and also — very important — that Congress play a role.”

Blinken met with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for the first time today, a State Department official confirmed...."

Source: https://breakingdefense.com/2021/01/us- ... ation-day/
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Unread post12 Jan 2021, 20:33

Lawsuit threatens $23B weapons sale to UAE [Lots more ladedah at the URL]
12 Jan 2021 Joe Gould

"WASHINGTON ― A small, 2-year-old nonprofit think tank has taken a step that most advocacy organizations never dare try: It has sued the U.S. State Department to derail a $23 billion arms sale to the United Arab Emirates.

In a legal claim announced last month, the New York Center For Foreign Policy Affairs asserted that the Trump administration failed to provide a reasonable explanation for its decision to sell F-35 fighter jets and other weapons to the UAE, which places it in breach of the Administrative Procedure Act. It has asked the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to find the sale invalid.

The case is unusual, as is the theory of the case, but so is the Trump administration’s approach to the sale, said Brittany Benowitz, a legal expert on human rights and arms trade. Such legal challenges rarely succeed, but if this one does, it could halt the deal even if Washington and Abu Dhabi follow through with plans to sign contracts in the waning days of the Trump administration. “If you can say this deal was executed improperly and the contractor was on notice of that, which they are, then I think you can say it’s possible to stop the sale before delivery,” Benowitz said....

In the U.S., there has not been a successful court case of targeting government-to-government sales in recent years, according to Benowitz. What’s also unusual about the New York Center For Foreign Policy Affairs’ approach is that it doesn’t rely on a human rights argument but rather points to aberrations in the process ― particularly past end-use violations that ought to have disqualified the UAE, she said.

“There have been court challenges to arms sales in the past on human rights grounds, but this challenge on national security grounds under the Administrative Procedure Act is unprecedented,” she said. “It’s rare because we have never had a record of irregularities like the one we have now.”

By Benowitz’s reckoning, if a finalized deal is invalidated in the courts and it is found that the deal never should have been entered in the first place, its unlikely the U.S. could be penalized financially by the UAE. “To get a remedy, or damages, under contract law, you have to have ‘clean hands,’ so it would be difficult for the Emiratis to recoup,” she said."

Source: https://www.defensenews.com/congress/20 ... le-to-uae/
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