US envoy hard-sells military hardware

The US ambassador to India Timothy Roemer pushed the sale of the C-17 and the C-130 to India.

T he US ambassador to India Timothy Roemer has made a strong pitch for
the sale of military materiel to India. Speaking at the launch of the
joint Indo-US air exercise Cope India 2009, Ambassador Roemer said
about the C-17 Globemaster aircraft, “Should you decide to acquire
this aircraft – and I hope you will – we will do everything we can to
assist you in expanding your strategic lift capability.”

He also pointedly addressed the question of the reliability of the
United States as a supplier of military equipment to India, saying,
“Our relationship has come a long way since those apprehensions were
formed.”

He also praised the Indian purchase of C-130J aircraft, saying, “I can
assure you that the Indian Air Force will be very pleased with your
decision to purchase the C-130J.”

Both the above aircraft are participating in the exercise which is set
to go on till October 24 at Agra. The Indian Air Force has fielded
An-32, IL-76, Mi-17 and Chetak aircraft. The exercise will include
drills in rapid insertion of forces, mass casualty management, search
and rescue and deployment of Rapid Action Medical Teams for
humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. 160 US personnel and 250
Indian airmen are participating in the exercise.

Air Commodore Shouvik Roy has overall command of the exercise, which
is being directed by Group Captain Mathew Mammen on the Indian side
and Colonel Raymond Lamarche of the US Air Force.

At the same time, another joint exercise, Yudh Abhyas, between the
armies of the two countries is also underway at Babina, near Jhansi in
Central India, involving mechanised elements of the two armies. While
the Indian Army has notably fielded its BMP-2 Armored Personnel
Carriers, the US has deployed, Strykers and Humvees.

Posted via email from stratpost’s posterous

Follow Saurabh Joshi on Twitter @ http://www.twitter.com/saurabhjoshi Saurabh is a journalist based in New Delhi, India who has worked in print, television as well as internet news media. Besides defense and strategy, his past assignments have included reporting from Kashmir, coverage of terror strikes as well as election coverage from all over India. He has a Bachelors degree in Journalism (Honors) as well as a law degree (LLB), both from the University of Delhi.
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