Procurement: Israel Kisses Russian Ass At Ukrainian Expense

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October 22, 2014: While Israel has expressed sympathy for Ukraine in their confrontation with Russia, when Ukraine asked to purchase some Israeli UAVs, the Israeli government intervened and blocked the sale (which Israeli manufacturers were willing to make). The reason was because Israel needed good relations with Russia, especially when it came to persuading the Russians to refrain from selling Iran modern weapons or the technology that would enable Iran to do so.

Ukraine might be able to get the UAVs elsewhere, or perhaps even make them locally. Before the Cold War ended in 1991, many Soviet weapons design and production operations were in Ukraine. These were inherited by the newly independent Ukraine after 1991. But most of these organizations went out of business because there was no more Soviet Armed Forces placing large orders each year. Most of the foreign sales disappeared as well. Ukraine salvaged some weapons and design capability by selling off its large Cold War stocks of Soviet weapons at low prices and developing a willingness to sell to anyone who could pay. Ukraine now has a lot of customers in Africa and Asia and as long as old technology is involved the Ukrainians still know how to produce it cheaply and reliably enough to keep a lot of these customers. Adding locally made UAVs to the product offerings might help with the export. UAVs are not high tech, but because the Russian invasion of eastern Ukraine is happening right now some UAVs are needed right now.

 

 


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