Haleluiah! Someone makes a decision on defence procurement

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I propose for your consideration the following: we should be happy. Mildly so. The Liberals, by actually making a decision to buy Super Hornets, have done something we should welcome. The issue was to fill a gap between what we have now, F-18s nearing the end of their life cycle,  and what we may eventually have when we get the F-35 fighter.  The Cabinet has made a  decision on defence procurement. Mark the day!

The fact that the purchase of Boeing Super Hornets will be sole-sourced is not a sign the government has lost its moorings, as John Ivison proclaims. It never had any. The issue is not sole-sourcing. How much competition is there in the fighter aircraft market? How many alternative sources of fighters are available? French, Swedish, Russian? So let’s get real.  The Americans have the only source of fighters that we can buy. And we have decided to buy some.

The decision – or the announcement of a decision – that we would not buy the F-35 in the election was superfluous political posturing, I grant you. By buying F-18 upgrades we simultaneously allow time to pass, and thereby let the public forget about the F-35s non-cancellation, and let the F-35 program have enough time to work out the kinks in this super-advanced fighter aircraft.

I would say the decision on Super-Hornets solves both a real problem of aircraft obsolescence, and an unreal self-created political problem, so it should be praised, mildly.

Most of all, it was a decision. Given Canada’s deplorable record of not making decisions on defence procurement, it should be welcomed.

To talk of Liberals losing their ethical moorings is to talk of things that cannot be, because to be a Liberal in Canada is to have abandoned ethical moorings in the first place. No, the Liberals are to be praised – mildly – for having made a decision at all. That it may actually be the right decision, or a reasonable one, is a bonus.

 

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old white guy

I don’t think it matters much which aircraft we buy. we will never buy enough of them to consider ourselves a threat to anyone other than primitive tribal jihadis. we really won’t even have sufficient numbers to defend our own country. it will be for show because there will be no go.

john

The super hornet is almost at the end of it’s production run while the F35 is at the beginning of a production run that will last for at least 30 years. By the time we acquire new super hornets they will cost about the same as the F35. The RCAF has stated that they are prepared to fly our current CF18s into the 2020s when the F35 production run will be mature. It does not make any sense to purchase the Super Hornet as a stop gap measure – merely political posturing by a government that is merely trying to cover it’s ass.

Scott M

Stop gap measure pffft…there’s no such thing. When the government buys something for the CF they’re stuck with it for 30 or 40 years. Besides the RCAF can’t afford two fighter platforms. Face it, buying the Super Hornet allows the government to put the F35 on the “back burner”…indefinitely.

Hattrick72

Didn’t we just miss the F35 payment thereby limiting our military access to Super Hornet’s which will be obsolete again in 15 years?

Bill Elder

The liberals have always been hostile to our Military. I see the Hornet buy as another hollow symbolic gesture to distract attention from the fact the defense budget has been slashed and payment for these capital projects is in a pay-it-forward mode with the defense spending of 84 billion stretched over 30 years.

Canadian deference spending already lags 50% below NATO’s spending target and the new military budget suggest this is unlikely to change with a 3.7million reduction this year.

During the election, Trudeau waxed patriotically about supporting Canada`s military, but when it comes to stepping up and paying for his promises the Liberals are kicking that ball further on down the field – 30 years further – so delayed payment on promised capital investment is a concrete sign that this Liberal government is not as big a fan of Canada`s military as it has said it is.

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