Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Preferring Food Over F-16 Fighter Jets: An Iraqi Initiative

Food Over F-16 Fighter Jets
Iraq has delayed the purchase of F-16 fighter jets for its air force to put $900mn of allocated funds into its national food ration programme instead, a government official said yesterday.
Iraq had hoped to have the first of the Lockheed Martin Corp combat aircraft in operation by 2013 to help shape its air force after years of war.
But a growing number of demonstrations over food and electricity shortages have worried the government after popular uprisings have toppled the leaders of Tunisia and Egypt.
“The (F-16) contract was postponed and the $900mn that was allocated to it was transferred to support the (food) ration card (programme),” said Tahseen al-Sheikhli, adviser to government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh.
The F-16 is seen as a symbol of military and political cooperation between Iraq and the US.

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