Jun 06 2014
Defence-aerospace.com publicized an article with a partly transcript about the annual budgeting process, of the Australian Senate’s Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee held hearings on the defense budget request on June 2.
We would like to encourage you to read the whole article on Defence-aerospace.com.
During this hearing, a senator from the opposition Australian Greens party, Scott Ludlam, questioned senior Australian Department of Defense officials about the government’s April 23 announcement that it will buy an additional 52 F-35A fighters at a cost of A$12.9 billion.
The officials’ answers – reproduced below - clearly demonstrated that several of the government’s statements on the F-35 were inaccurate, if not deliberately misleading, and that Australia had committed to the largest defense purchase in its history unconditionally, in the unquestioning belief that the F-35 would be superior to any opposing fighter for the duration of its 40-year service life.
The defense officials appearing at the hearing included:
– Senator Johnston, Minister for Defence
– General David Hurley AC, DSC, Chief of the Defence Force
– Air Marshal Geoff Brown AO, Chief of Air Force
– Mr Warren King; Chief Executive Officer, Defence Materiel Organisation
– Air Vice-Marshal Chris Deeble, General Manager Land and Maritime (Acting) and program manager for the JSF program.
As is made clear by the transcript and the related video, these officials did not give a good account of themselves, and left unanswered the most critical question regarding the F-35 program, its capabilities and the reasons for Australia’s commitment to the aircraft.
Some of these exchanges, notably with Air Marshal Brown and DMO chief executive Warren king, are remarkable because of the arrogance and impatience displayed by these officials in responding to legitimate questions by an elected lawmaker during a formal parliamentary hearing.
Read the full article on Defence-aerospace.com
Click here for the full transcript of the hearing in HTML format (scroll down 9/10th of page, to reach “Senator Ludlam”) on the Australian Parliament website.
Click here for the hearing transcript in PDF format (131 pages; scroll down to the bottom of page 106), also on the Australian Parliament website.
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