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Friday, October 29, 2010     FOR YOUR EYES ONLY

Sudden loss of Turkish market hits export goals for Israeli defense industry

TEL AVIV — The Turkish government and military have suspended all major defense orders and most follow-up contracts with Israel.


Israeli government sources said the Defense Ministry has become skeptical of reaching its goal of exporting $8 billion in 2010. They said the absence of new Turkish contracts has hampered the Ministry's export campaign.

"We knew that Turkey was declining as a major export client, but we didn't think it would be this fast," a source said.

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The sources said Ankara's focus was to maintain critical programs, particularly the procurement and operation of the Israeli-origin Heron unmanned aerial vehicle.

"Everything else is up in the air," the source said.

In April 2010, Israel completed the last major defense project in Turkey, valued at $688 million. A consortium led by the state-owned Israel Military Industries upgraded 170 M-60A3 main battle tanks to a configuration similar to that of Israel's Merkava Mk-4, Middle East Newsline reported. IMI has been sued by a Turkish company for breach of contract.

"At one point, there was lots of interest in the Turkish military to order another upgrade," the source said. "Not any more."

The Defense Ministry has sought to compensate for the loss of the Turkish market by increasing sales in South America. At least one country, Colombia, has expressed interest in procuring Merkava Mk-4 as well as other Israeli combat platforms.


Another result of the correct perception in the Muslim world, and in the Third World in general, that the Obama administration is anti-Western, anti-Israel, and, to put it charitably, tilted far to the Left of center. Hopefully Americans at least have started to notice that they thought they were putting another Kennedy in the White House, and what they got was another Che Guevera.

Howard S      2:58 p.m. / Sunday, October 31, 2010

I do not believe what this article says because it seems to me that under the surface the Israeli and Turkish militaries still have a very strong relationship. And the pro-Israel lobby in America is still on Turkey's side by opposing Armenians and Greeks.

Sarah      4:29 p.m. / Friday, October 29, 2010

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