Purchasers of F-15s are now concerned
US Air Force commanders, keen to ensure the US Congress approved their quest for the F/A-22 Raptors, ensured that the results of the joint air-exercise with India were played up. During those now famous exercises, Indian Su-30s and even MiG-21s outperformed American pilots flying their F-15 Eagles.
But the Financial Times reports that this has caused other prospective buyers of F-15s to be concerned too.
It would seem only natural that the F/A-22’s largest subcontractor, Boeing, would play along too – except for one problem: Boeing makes the F-15. The company recently won a competition to produce F-15s for South Korea and is engaged in a heated contest to build 20 for the Singapore air force. “We were concerned,” says George Muellner, head of Boeing’s air force business.
In an effort to save the F-15 from the Pentagon’s self-inflicted wounds, General John Jumper, the air force chief of staff, recently briefed Singaporean officials on the Indian exercise. Singapore, which is also looking at the Eurofighter and the French Rafale, has reason to be worried: China has bought the Su-30, as have Malaysia and Indonesia. [FT]