Indonesia Giving Priority to C-130 Hercules Planes

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Indonesian C-130H-30(click to view full) From 2001-2005, the US State and Defense Departments lobbied for the resumption of US weapons sales to Indonesia, as part of their efforts to secure support against Islamic terrorists. The US Senate refused to lift the ban, which had been put in place after widespread murders and human rights abuses by Indonesia’s military in East Timor. The Senate did, however, give the Secretary of State the power to issue a waiver to the ban, if it was deemed to be in the interests of national security. The US State Department promptly issued that waiver. At the time, it was speculated that Indonesia’s first priority might be its F-16s, only 4 of which were still flyable. That’s still on the agenda, but a buy of Russian SU-27/30 Flankers has taken some of the urgency away. Instead, in a display of smart politics, Indonesia’s top priority with the USA has been its C-130 Hercules tactical transport fleet. A move that gained impetus after a tragic 2009 crash. Still grounded. According to Agence France Presse, in 2005 Defense Minister Juwono Sudarsono said that: “About 70 percent of next year’s armed forces budget will be allocated to buy more […]

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