F-16, F-18 unbeatable, no F-35 offer for India: US
Posted on: 03:05 AM IST Feb 03, 2012
Washington: After losing out to the French, the US asserted its F-16 and F-18 fighter jets would have provided India unbeatable platforms with proven technologies, but said it had not offered India more advanced F-35 Joint Strike Fighters (JSF).
"We are extremely confident that the F/A-18IN and F-16IN would have provided the Indian Air Force unbeatable platforms with proven technologies at a competitive price," Pentagon spokesperson Cmdr Leslie Hull-Ryde said.
"As you know, our platforms are derived from combat proven fighter aircraft and represent the cutting-edge of proven technology," Hull-Ryde said.
The Pentagon reaction came a day after India announced that France's Dassault has won a $10.4 billion order to supply the Indian Air Force 126 MMRCA (Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft) in India's and one of the world's largest defence deals.
But Hull-Ryde said it had made no offer to sell F-35 Joint Strike Fighters (JSF) to India after New Delhi rejected the bids of the two American fighter jets along with that of the Russians and Swedish last April.
It had only offered to provide information on the JSF should India indicate an interest in buying, she said.
"Should India indicate interest in purchasing the JSF, the United States would be prepared to provide information on the JSF and its requirements (infrastructure, security etc) to support India's future planning."