The spectacular rearmament of the United Arab Emirates: F-35s, heavily armed Reapers, AMRAAM missiles …

The US State Department approved macro sale of weapons systems to the United Arab Emirates amounts to no less than $ 23.370 million. The Defense and Security Co-operation Agency’s announcement confirmed what was taken for granted: the sale of F-35s. The entire batch approved for sale consists of: 50 F-35A conventional take-off and landing fighters valued at $ 10.4 billion; 800 AIM-120C8 air-to-air medium-range missiles, air-to-ground intelligent ammunition and conventional bombs valued at $ 10 billion; and for an additional $ 2.97 billion, a total of 18 MQ-9B Reaper remote-controlled aircraft, or RPAS (remote-controlled aircraft systems), with all their armament and equipment.

Particularly relevant is the planned sale of the 50 Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II fighter-bombers and 54 Pratt & Whitney F-135 engines, which would make the United Arab Emirates the first Arab after Israel and the second in the Middle East. to have these aircraft with spectacular combat capabilities, including their stealth or stealth capabilities. Israel’s air superiority will continue to be based on equipping itself with the F-22 Raptor

Also noteworthy is the sale of the General Atomics MQ-9B Reaper Predator B RPAS in Spain, which, unlike those acquired by the Spanish Air Force, will be armed from the start. According to DSCA, the potential agreement includes equipment with: 515 AGM-114R Hellfire missiles; 12 KMU 572 assault ammunition or Joint Direct Attack Ammunition (JDAM) for 227 kg bombs; 4 aerodynamic groups MXU-650 for Paveway II GBU-12 control systems; 7 MXU-1006 for Paveway II GBU-58 systems; 11 Computer Control Groups (CCG) MAU-169 or MAU-209 for Paveway II GBU-58 / GBU-12 systems; and various analog inert ammunition systems for practical use.

While the United States Congress could veto the sales, it is very unlikely that they will, as they result from a very important deal for United States foreign policy, even with the change in the White House and especially for the powerful North American defense industry.

The announcement of the deal comes a little over a month after the signing of the Abraham Agreement in Washington, a kind of peace agreement between Israel, Bahren and the United Arab Emirates that some consider to be a regional alliance with Iran. and amid tensions between the United States and its NATO ally, Turkey. (Julio Maz Sanz)

Photo: The Lockheed Martin F-35, UAE is the first Arab operator of the system. (USAF photo)

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