State Department supports foreign military sales growth

State Department supports foreign military sales growth

U.S. foreign military sales more than doubled from $34 billion in 2011 to a record $69 billion last year in the effort to boost the ability of allies to counter regional and terror threats on their own, a top State Department official said Tuesday.

The huge increase in the sale of weapons systems from F-16s to tanks and missile defense batteries “reinforces our diplomatic relationships” with partner states and “encourages others to shoulder more of the costs” of defense, said Thomas Kelly, head of the State Department’s Bureau of Political-Military Affairs.

Defense companies had complained that the State Department too often unnecessarily delayed the approval process. Pentagon leaders had promised they would lobby on behalf of U.S. defense companies to speed up the FMS approval road blocks in order to ease the burden of the onslaught of defense budget cuts on the defense industry.

The standard for a sale was whether “this transaction is in the best foreign policy and national security interests of the United States,” said Kelly, whose office approves sales or transfers by the Defense Department and private firms of U.S. military equipment under the Arms Control Export Act.

“Countries increasingly want to partner with the U.S.” for their own internal security and to counter terrorism and rogue states such as Iran and North Korea, Kelly said. “More and more countries want to cooperate” and the cooperation was underlined by the increased interest from partner states in U.S. military systems, Kelly said.

Kelly was a keynote speaker at a symposium on Special Operations/Low Intensity Conflict sponsored by the National Defense Industrial Association at a Washington, D.C. hotel.

Defense contractors eager to boost foreign sales to offset cutbacks in U.S. military budgets showed off their wares at an exhibition hall in the hotel. Among them was a representative of Bell Helicopter, producer of the MV-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft that the United Arab Emirates has been seeking to buy.

The Bell representative declined to be specific, but said there was interest in the Ospreys from states in the Mideast and the Pacific.

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Capitalism right?

Yeah Obama giving the new enemy’s of the USA newest weapons IE the new Islamist Egypt getting new F-16s and M-1 tanks and M-60A1 upgrades. And giving more arms for free to Afghan forces who shoot our men in the back and will not stay around long after the US and NATO pulls out next year.

One of the worst problems is the revolving door from Congress and DoD to military contractors. You’ve got children and other relatives of Congressmen and military people working as lobbyists because they have the influence to make deals.

Egypt gets FMF funding so this is not really an FMS — which means the taxpayers are paying for it all. So, this is just an infusion of taxpayer dollars to US DoD contractors. Egypt has not money of their own to buy these systems. This is just foreign crony and corporate welfare.

This Article has a lot of holes in it. It does not address who is getting these Arms .It was completely left out the break down of who is receiving these Arms but many comments point to Egypt which is true. Another fact is that we GIVE Bilions of dollars to Eypt every year and that is mostly in weapons which means the taxpayers are picking up the Tab. Thanks Obama. Your doing a great job with your Arab Spring. In the meantime Egypt is almost in a Civil war.


Since when are we exporting the latest? They aren’t getting block 60/62 F-16s, the M60 is a relic, and the M1s they have are missing very important features. I.E. Inferior ammo, inferior fire control, no DU in the armor, a weaker composite. It’s safe to say we export monkey models much like the russians.

I don’t get why there are Obama comments here, purely for the fact that any presidential administration has very little to do with FMS. As long as congress has a country cleared (To various degrees), that country can show up with a check and buy gear. And the Arab Spring would have occurred no matter who was in power here, as most military intervention was from other NATO countries and not the US. (Hello, France!)

We haven’t backed the horse in YEARS!! And the hits just keep on coming. We are arming people who haven’t got any independent thought, who have been fighting for centuries due to sear ignorance, and now we are giving them more power to do it with. That is it. We have lost what is left of our minds.!!!

Wow think about it Obama has initiated the VRAP programs for Vets and helped establish HUD-VAS to alleviate Veteran homelessness, and has instituted PATHWAYS to help Veterans get Federal jobs that was based on cronyism before and has ended the WAR in IRAQ that has constituted the biggest cost to Heath to Veterans.Stop attacking and start looking at what this Administration has tried to do Legislate.Yes I agree they had missteps like limiting a right to bear arms it isn’t the guns its criminals and Mental illness that causes Mass shootings..Did anyone read in the New York Times April 2011 that 65 Million Americans are barred from Employment due to Background Checks? This is a real problem and Illegal immigrants are going to be able to take jobs even Americans cannot get and we are here legally due to Background Checks ..This should be eliminated if we are going to Award jobs to people here illegally but Ban Amercans from Employment that are here Legally. In the State of New York for example misdemeanor convictions stay on a persons background check Forever and that causes Americans in that state to not pass a background check for employment this is UN-AMERICAN.

Really why not INDICT a President that ordered a WAR that killed hundreds of thousands of Innocent Iraqi people and has caused so much death and injury to American soldiers for a WAR that had no justification whatsoever.If Bush gets a Pass so should Obama.The damage to our economy was devastating. If Obama is guilty of anything its the Pass he gave Wall Street during the housing crisis Not One criminal charge was failed by the Justice Department for criminal fraud.Not One.But at the same time we kicked Americans out of their homes, raised their taxes, and do Background Checks that allow corporations to Bar and Ban Americans from jobs . When Bank of America admits to Fraud or Wells Fargo or other prominent Institutions do we ban or bar them forever for being a corporation? nO WE DO NOT!

“Really why not INDICT a President that ordered a WAR that killed hundreds of thousands of Innocent Iraqi people”

Those of us who were awake in junior high school civics class learned that under the U.S. Constitution, the power to declare war does not repose with the office of the President. It is, rather, reposed in the Congress.

Congress voted to go to war.

Persons who aver otherwise reveal nothing other than their abject factual and historical ignorance.

Two further observations:

Within the Congress, many liberal Democrats voted for war. I at the time was in a district where both of my Senators and my representative in the House were all uniformly liberal Democrats. Of those three liberal Democrats, two of the three voted for war in Iraq. (Likewise, two of the three voted to go to war in Afghanistan.)

And once at war, the “hundred of thousands” of Iraqis who were killed were largely killed by other Iraqis in a post-invasion sectarian civil war having little to do with the outside forces. That civil war was a legacy of the Saddam Hussein regime and the internal divisions it deliberately fostered within Iraq. That war, or something indistinguishable from it, was inexorably going to happen, like it or not, as soon as Saddam’s writ ceased.

And Saddam was an old man at the time of the invasion. If the US had stayed out of Iraq, he would have eventually died of natural causes, his regime would have fractured as his sons fought for control, and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis would have died at one another’s hands in sectarian civil war anyway.

The version of the civil war that happened while the US was there might actually have been _less_ severe than the one which would eventually have resulted if the US had never gone in. A solid hypothetical argument can be made that the presence of US forces actually reduced Iraqi deaths net-net.

And all of the foregoing is the opinion of someone who thought it wasn’t worth invading Iraq. Yes, you read that correctly. I opposed the war from the conservative right, while the liberal Democrats who represent me on Capitol Hill were busy voting for it! Rather a different picture from the one originally painted, of one President unilaterally “ordering” war.

Excellent reply torquewrench… I would like to add my viewpoint on this as well as I am so tired of hearing, as you so well put, those who have factual and historical ignorance flash it like they are reporting from an insider vantage point in an effort to make themselves feel good about their political leanings.…

I’ll start by saying that the real root cause, I believe, really should be traced back to ignorant comments like GW’s as that impact (concern for negative public opinion) is likely what led GHB to not complete the mission and divide Iraq into 3 areas,establishing no fly zones over them…

During that time I happened to be in a place to note that just about everyday our fine airmen were dodging golden BBs fired at them from Iraq. It was apparent to me that sooner or later one of our fine airman was going to get blown out of the sky and the war would have then escalated back up to finish what was started.

Further, not only were our airmen targets in the air but we also were targets on the ground…19 of our great airmen at the 33rd FW paid the ultimate price of the delay in completing the mission when they were targeted at the Khobar Towers.… I was at the 33rd FW the week of the Khobar Towers bombing and was in the engine shop to witness the daily calls from SRA Jeremy Taylor’s parents (he was the engine techncian deployed there) asking if anyone down range had heard from him… and I was there when the Commander and the Chaplain called everyone into the break room to give them the news that SrA Taylor had paid the ultimate price for service to his country… and this happened on President Clinton’s watch…

So to those that want to continue to drum beat with this false sense of history (GW), in their attempt to justify their political leanings, I believe it is your “false and slanted view of facts and history” that was the real root causeof dragging the Iraq war out 20 years… and ultimately the loss of our soldiers and airmen… some of whom I knew…

Interesting…we have a government making billions on arms sales to Islamist countries (do we apologize this way) yet this same government is pulling for gun/weapon bans on its own citizens yet again. If the nations we are selling these weapon systems are not mainly Muslim populated, why don’t they make these transactions “transparent”?


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