By Jim Wolf WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Pentagon may have to scrap its premier fighter jet program to help pay for the war in Iraq, Sen. John McCain, an influential member of the Armed Services Committee, said on Sunday. "It's obvious that we're paying a heavy price, I think, for not having had enough troops there from the beginning," the Arizona Republican said on NBC's "Meet the Press." McCain said both the U.S. Army and the Marine Corps must be expanded overall, a position at odds with President Bush's administration. The United States has about 135,000 troops in Iraq, a number that McCain said must rise. As part of a broad overhaul of U.S. priorities, he said, the Pentagon may have to scrap the $71 billion Air Force program to buy F/A-22 air-to-air fighters built by Lockheed Martin Corp. . "We may have to cancel this airplane that's going to cost between $250 million and $300 million a copy," said McCain, floating what could become a major new legislative hurdle to a top Air Force priority. McCain led a drive that stalled what has become a $23.5 billion plan to lease up to 20 and buy up to 80 modified Boeing Co. 767s as mid-air refueling tankers. The plan is on hold pending reviews due next month at the Pentagon. "We've got to change the way we do business and put the priority where it belongs," McCain said. "And that is making sure that we succeed in Iraq." Republican Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas, chairman of the Intelligence committee, said the United States needed more specially trained forces in Iraq. "People that are in there have to know what the heck we're doing," Roberts said on the CBS program Face the Nation. "If we do have those troops, yes, let's send them." The Air Force hopes to buy at least 277 F/A-22 fighters, which it describes as key to dominating the skies in future combat. It is about to enter operational testing en route to replacing the F-15C. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has resisted calls for any lasting increase in the U.S. occupation force in Iraq and argued against permanently boosting the size of U.S. armed forces unless sought by military commanders themselves. Last week, Rumsfeld said the Pentagon may postpone the departure of some troops supposed to be heading home now. The Pentagon originally had planned to decrease the numbers to about 115,000 in coming months. © Reuters 2004. All Rights Reserved.
Passa-se algo de errado com o complexo militar industrial americano. Quem tem razão é um americano com quem falei há uns tempos que dizia que o principal objectivo de algumas empresas do sector da defesa é ir ao bolso do contribuinte americano !
Penso que o que o Ricardo quiz dizer é que o desconto é de 110 milhões, logo o preço final será de 190 Milhões de dolares. Um F-16 acho que deverá andar na ordem dos 50 milhoes de dolares(digo eu...).