Posted by lex, on March 18th, 2011
Built in Chengdu: The Chinese have constructed an MQ-9 Reaper variant.
Probably powered by a general aviation piston engine. You’ll remember that AVIC bought Continental * back in December. Ostensibly due to “anticipated growth in the Chinese general aviation market.”
China is also in negotiations to buy general aviation innovator Cirrus, but a US investor is forming a group to return the company to American ownership.
In tangentially related aviation news, Stephen DeMaura over at RedState is lamenting the possibility that Brazilian manufacturer Embraer is being considered as a competitor to US aircraft maker Hawker Beechcraft in DoD’s Light Attack and Armed Reconnaissance aircraft contract:
Earlier this week I sent a letter to the Department of Defense in which I wrote, “The Brazilian government’s direct control over Embraer would put the production of the light attack and reconnaissance aircraft at the mercy and whim of Brazil’s political leaders who too often do not see eye to eye with the United States on foreign policy issues.” At stake in this debate is not a single defense contract but rather a larger statement of whether the United States is committed to creating high quality, high paying jobs at home or whether we are more interested in placating hostile adversaries economic ambitions.
Given the precarious and ambiguous relationship of the United States and Brazil as well as the stark choice we have been presented we believe the choice is clear; American jobs, American quality for our American defense with no veto power to other nations.
When it comes to military kit at least, the US has a long tradition of “buying American.”
Seems sensible to me.
** Link Updated 05-11-2018 – Ed.