An IDC Analysis


New Delhi, 14 September 2005

The USA is pushing for sales of the Patriot, F 16/18 and P3C Orions and a few news items are posted on the subject. India's DRDO is already designing a BMD with Green Pine Radar but then there are political interests in defence deals. The entire defence scene is exciting as the UPA Government is all set to sign mega deals for the benefits that such deals offer. Gen Kohler a familiar visitor to India was in the country again and Americans are an impatient lot and will soon learn how long and how torturous it is to do defence business in India. The Americans are moving at a fast pace we keep watch, to see how the wind blows. The PM is due to visit Paris and then USA in September and Defence deals will be brought up though the Scorpene Type 75 deal is sealed up.

US Shares Anti-Missile Know-How With India

A high-level United States defence team has given classified detailed briefing on the Patriot PAC-III anti-missile system, specially its capabilities against Weapons of Mass Destruction, and on sensitive technologies of F-18/A Hornet and F-16 fighter jets to Indian Air Force officials. This is for the first time that a Pentagon team has briefed Indian officials on the latest Patriot PAC-III anti-missile system.

Lieutenant General Jeffrey B Kohler, head of the American delegation, said India was among the few countries outside US treaty allies to be briefed on the missile system. "It is part of the US commitment to develop a strategic partnership with India and sharing classified details of the Patriot missile system is one of its elements," he said. He asserted that Washington was not insisting on any package deal for sale of the state-of-the-art anti-missile system.

Refusing to divulge any details about the range of the intrerception of the anti-missile system, Kohler, director, Defence Cooperative Agency in the Pentagon, said any sales of the missile system would include training of personnel and supply of spare parts.

He said it was for the Indian government to take a decision on the purchase of the anti-missile system, acknowledging that New Delhi was also looking at similar systems being offered by Russia and Israel.

Asked to elaborate on WMD capabilities of the PAC-III system, Kohler said the US, after its experience in the first Gulf War had carried out detailed studies on the impact of missiles using WMD warheads and the new system had the capacity to neutralise these.

On the proposed offer to sell the P3C naval spy planes, Kohler said Washington had submitted a number of new proposals to Indian Navy along with commercial verifications of the sales. He said the Indian Navy had evinced incorporating some special features in the Orions for which the Pentagon had agreed and would set up a special task force to make them operational.

On the F-18's and F-16's, the Pentagon official said his team, which comprised of US Air Force specialists, had outlined to IAF experts the special features of the Hornets including electronic warfare, radars, engines and weapons systems.

He said that the US Navy would field the F-18/A and P3C Orions during the upcoming Malabar range of joint exercises with Indian Navy in October.

Kohler also said that US had submitted proposals for leasing out some of Navy's Orions to India. Similarly, the F-16 Fighting Falcons would put up a live demonstration during joint air force exercises to be held in Kalaikunda in West Bengal in November, he added.

Improved Patriot

By Shelby G. Spires

Times Aerospace

The Army scored a success with its improved Patriot during a missile intercept over the New Mexico desert. The test involved two Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) missiles against a short-range, full-body aerodynamic theater ballistic missile target. Another Flight Trial Is Scheduled For October

Army Col. John Vaughn wouldn't reveal exact specifications other than to say the target vehicle was an older Patriot missile that is "highly manoeuvrable, and that's what we are after." Vaughn manages Patriot as part of the Lower Tier Air and Missile Defense Office in Huntsville.

"We are looking to go after things that do not behave very well and manoeuver," Vaughn said. "Objects that move around" during flight . The target was destroyed, Vaughn said.

The test is the culmination of months of preparation and involved about 200 Army workers in Huntsville and "hundreds of people across the country with contractors and other" workers, Vaughn said.

This test demonstrated the system's capability to detect, track, engage and intercept a short-range aerodynamic target, said Bob Hunt, Patriot spokesman at Redstone Arsenal.

Patriot will go through another flight test in October, Vaughn said. "It will be a variation of the current test, but we will be going after a slightly different threat," he said.

The PAC-3 system was first used in combat during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003. It is the newest addition to the Patriot family of missiles.

Patriot shot to international fame with engagements during the first Gulf War more than 14 years ago.

"This missile has gone through significant enhancements since the 1990-1991 Gulf War," Vaughn said. "It's primarily a different type now."

The 1990s missile approached an enemy target and exploded, upsetting the flight path. The new version strikes the enemy missile and destroys it.

The program is managed by the U.S. Army Program Executive Office for Missiles and Space and executed by the Lower Tier Air and Missile Defense Project Office in Huntsville.

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