Coalition of Leading Military Members Urge Congress to Review Flawed Tanker Deal Awarded to France-Based Defense Contractor

Letter to Congress Warns of Risks to Vital Defense and Economic Interests if Critical Military Assets are Outsourced to France and other Nations

WASHINGTON , May 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A coalition of more than 25 leading military members from all branches of the Armed Services today sent an important letter to members of Congress urging an immediate review of the recent decision by the U.S. Air Force to award a $40 billion aerial refueling tanker contract to France -based EADS/Airbus.

In the letter, the group urges Congress to exercise rigorous oversight of the Pentagon's decision to award the multi-billion dollar contract to a foreign company that has little experience if not in building critical refueling tankers for our military.

"I believe the Air Force has chosen the wrong aircraft, the wrong firm, and the wrong selection process," said Rear Adm. Paul W. Rohrer (Ret.). "We should remember that EADS has never manufactured a fully operational tanker, it is plagued by cost overruns and delays that are costing it customers around the globe, and its top executives stand accused by French authorities of an insider-trading scheme."

As a result of the tanker decision, members of Congress as well as the Government Accountability Office (GAO) are investigating serious flaws in the Air Force's procurement process, which led to the Pentagon's selection of a tanker aircraft that is less capable, more expensive, and threatens the security of secret U.S. military technologies.

"As for the selection process, the Air Force appears to have changed the criteria during the bidding process in a way that unfairly favored EADS, and EADS has made claims about the capabilities, costs, and suitability of its Airbus platform that do not stand up to close scrutiny," added Rear Adm. Rohrer.

To view a full copy of the letter, go to www.ff.org.

SOURCE Frontiers of Freedom



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