Top DOD buyer signals globalization is reality; tanker contract might come Feb. 25

Two top Defense Department officials today (Feb. 16) told a conference sponsored  by Aviation Week magazine that the contract award for the KC-X could be made by the end of the month.

The buzz in Washington is that it will be after the stock market closed on Friday, Feb. 25.

The statements by the DOD officials are summed up nicely in this Defense News article.

At the same Aviation Week conference, the Pentagon’s top buyer, Ashton Carter, repeated remarks he made a week earlier at the Cowen & Co. aerospace and defense investors’ conference February 9. At the Cowen event, the headlines to come out of it were remarks made by Boeing CEO Jim McNerney about the prospect of proceeding with an all-new replacement for the 737.

The headline that did not come out of it was from a speech presented by the Pentagon’s top buyer, Ashton Carter. Elements of his speech did, indeed, make news. However, buried in his speech as the last topic were his comments about globalization and procuring key defense systems from non-US companies.

Is this laying the groundwork for selecting the EADS North America KC-45 tanker in the KC-X competition? DOD Buzz picked up on this, too, but well down its story.

Perhaps this is too much “Kremlinology” but carefully read his remarks:

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