What’s Canada Buying? December 1, 2012
- F-35 Tug o’ War (1) “Canada’s new chief of defence staff has contradicted Defence Minister Peter MacKay by suggesting that other fighter jets do offer some of the stealth capabilities the military needs. Tom Lawson said during testimony Thursday before the Commons defence committee about the planned $25-billion purchase that most fighter jets offer some degree of stealth capability, including Canada’s aging fleet of CF-18s. Boeing’s Super Hornet and the Eurofighter Typhoon have been suggested as alternatives to Lockheed Martin’s F-35, which until now appeared to be the only fighter jet Canada was considering. “It’s the only fifth-generation, stealth aircraft that meets Canada’s needs,” MacKay told reporters as recently as last March ….”
- F-35 Tug o’ War (2) No documents shared, so no idea what else is there “In the lead-up to last year’s federal election, Defence Department officials intentionally dodged repeated requests from Parliament’s budgetary watchdog to sit down and discuss the true cost of the F-35 stealth fighter program. Newly released internal emails show that’s because they were awaiting approval from the top echelons of government to meet with Parliamentary Budget Officer Kevin Page and his staff — approval that never materialized. Then once an explosive report from the PBO was released, estimating the jets to be twice as expensive as the government’s claim, defence officials worked overtime to undermine its credibility ….”
- F-35 Tug o’ War (3) Academic: “The F-35 is Down but Not Out as Canada’s Next Fighter”
- F-35 Tug o’ War (4) Mark Collins: “Canada’s New Fighter: What the Heck is that “Stealth” Anyway? Or…”
- F-35 Tug o’ War (5) South of the border, meanwhile ….. “The Department of Defense has reached an agreement in principle with Lockheed Marin to build 32 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters under the lot 5 contract for low-rate initial production (LRIP-5). The agreement ends more than 18 months of contentious negotiations that led to complaints on both sides. “It’s been a long journey, but I’m pleased we’ve achieved an agreement that is beneficial to the government and Lockheed Martin,” says Vice Admiral Dave Venlet, F-35 programme executive officer. “Production costs are decreasing and I appreciate everyone’s commitment to this important negotiation process.” ….” – more from less-than-convinced blogger Eric Palmer here.
- “The Honourable Bernard Valcourt, Associate Minister of National Defence, Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency) (La Francophonie) and Member of Parliament for Madawaska-Restigouche, joined by Mr. Scott Reid, Member of Parliament for Lanark-Frontenac-Lennox and Addington, (yesterday) announced a significant support contract for the Canadian Armed Forces’ tactical vehicle network. DRS Technologies Canada Ltd. has been awarded this $38.7 million contract for the Land Command Support System which will sustain and create close to 70 jobs in Ontario and Quebec ….” – more on the work being done here.
- “The Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Member of Parliament for Lévis-Bellechasse, on behalf of the Honourable Minister Valcourt, Associate Minister of National Defence, (yesterday) announced that the Government of Canada awarded a significant support contract for the maintenance of the Canadian Army’s Leopard 2 family of vehicles. Wajax Power Systems of Québec City, Quebec, has been awarded a contract valued at $10.16 million for the repair and overhaul of engines for the Leopard 2 family of vehicles over three years, which will sustain approximately 10 jobs in the region. The contract includes two one-year extension options, which could bring the total contract value to $22.09 million ….”
- “The Honourable Lisa Raitt, Minister of Labour and Member of Parliament for Halton, along with the Honourable Michael Chong, Member of Parliament for Wellington-Halton Hills, (yesterday) announced a contract award, on behalf of the Honourable Bernard Valcourt, Associate Minister of National Defence, and Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency) (La Francophonie), to improve life-saving chemical detector training for our men and women in uniform. Patlon Aircraft & Industries Limited of Halton Hills, Ontario, has been awarded this $6.6 million contract to supply a simulator system that will be used to train Canadian Armed Forces personnel in the use of new portable devices that detect chemical warfare agents and toxic industrial chemicals during military operations ….“
- “The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, (yesterday) announced eight contract awards for general maintenance at Canadian Forces Base Wainwright. The overall value of the contracts is over $1.4 million ….”