- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Your editorial “Time to update the tanker fleet” (Opinion, Friday) shed light on an issue vital to the future of U.S. air supremacy. However, the call for the Pentagon to share Boeing pricing data with the Airbus/Northrop bid in an effort to achieve “procedural fairness” is ludicrous. In fact, the only reason the Airbus pricing data was exposed in the first place was because of unfair practices, successfully challenged by Boeing, in the initial awarding of the $40 billion aerial refueling tanker contract. So, let me get this straight - Airbus wants to level a playing field tipped by its own unfair contract? I’m not buying that argument.

Also, French-based Airbus is the major partner in the Airbus/Northrop-Grumman bid to build the tanker. This is the same Airbus that for decades has received illegal subsidies from European governments totaling $15 billion, enabling it to underbid competitors, such as American-based Boeing, for U.S. defense contracts. It is bureaucratic foolery for the U.S. government to sue Airbus in international court for blatant trade violations while the Pentagon rewards Airbus for the very same behavior.


Duck, N.C.

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