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Norway’s plan to buy Swedish fighter jets a hoax

WikiLeaks docs: The U.S. used political pressure on its NATO ally to turn down Saab's Gripen.

Thailand buys six more Saab fighter jets

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Sweden was lured by both the United States and Norway in connection with the milti-billion dollar deal for the Swedish fighter jet Gripen, according to revelations from the Wikileaks. Norway’s interest in buying the aircrafts, made by defense company Saab, was just a false show.

The Aftonbladet tabloid reports that the Norwegians gave tips to the U.S so the sale would go to its F-35 fighter. According to the American diplomatic cables, the U.S. embassy in Oslo called on Washington to use political pressure on its NATO ally to choose the F-35.

In November 2008 Norway's defense ministry opted for the Lockheed Martin-led F-35 as its future fighter. For the Swedes it came as a shocking surprise, making Saab executives publicly denounced Norway for choosing the American-made aircraft over Gripen, claiming the decision was based on “faulty analysis”.

"We are really surprised about how this was handled, what happened yesterday, and about the justification," Jan Nygren, who served as Saab’s deputy CEO prior to the decision, told the TT news agency at the time. "And besides, we are just a tad surprised to say the least that they so unabashedly chose to criticize the Gripen, despite the fact that all of us involved know that the Gripen is a better fit for the functional demands laid out in the documentation included in the proposal request."

Sweden's Gripen NG by Saab, US-made F/A-18 Super Hornet by Boeing and France's Rafale by Dassult are all on the shortlist for Brazil's multi-billion-dollar fighter jet tender.


Last Updated (Friday, 03 December 2010 10:38)


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