In addition to its strategic location athwart the Persian Gulf shipping lanes, Bahrain is also the base for the US 5th fleet.
In May 2004, the U.S. Marine Corps awarded Lockheed Martin a $43.6 million contract to provide the AN/TPS-59(V)3B ballistic missile defense radar system, along with associated supplies, equipment and services, to the Kingdom of Bahrain as a foreign military sale. The production line was restarted, and a new radar was produced. Earlier in 2007, members of the Bahrain Defence Force were trained how to operate and maintain the system at Lockheed Martin’s Radar Systems facility in Syracuse, NY. An Oct 2/07 Lockheed Martin release noted that he Kingdom’s TPS-59 radar proceeded smoothly through a site acceptance test in August 2007, and is now being used by the Bahrain Defence Force for air surveillance.
Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation of Rolling Meadows, IL received a firm-fixed price contract modification for $15 million, pursuant to a letter contract for foreign military sales case number MO-D-QAD for one Moroccan Head of State Aircraft Large Aircraft Infrared Countermeasures (LAIRCM) system. LAIRCM has become a popular way to protect large transport aircraft; it uses sensors to detect incoming infrared-guided missiles, then throws it off course using targeted laser pulses. The exact aircraft was not specified, but based on the Alkowat al malakiya al jawiya’s order of battle, our bet is on the transcontinental Falcon 50 business jet based at Rabat Sale.
The contract will include hardware, support equipment and services to include but not limited to: systems engineering, program management, logistics, spares as well as installation, installation support, and field service support. This effort support foreign military sales to Morocco. At this time, $3 million has been obligated. Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH will issue the contract (FA8625-08-C-6479).