Rafale: Greek largesse means buying from expensive "stores"!

Ω Prof. Giorgos Margaritis
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Rafale, Greek largesse means buying from expensive stores, Giorgos Margaritis

At the time these lines are being written, the media of all forms and kinds, are solemnly announcing that, once again, we are entering a period of de-escalation, in our "differences" with Turkey. This happy development is due to the catalytic intervention of Messrs. Trump and Pompeo.

The latter, in fact, interpreting the will of the former, instructed the leaders of the two countries to "back down", so that we can start (all together, and we suppose the US as well) to conduct diplomatic talks on the differences in the Eastern Mediterranean, the disagreements for security (i.e. demilitarization of Greek islands), energy resources (.e. joint exploitation) and maritime zones ". So, neither territorial waters, nor continental shelf, nor EEZ, as the zones you see are not provided for by any legal system.

In a few words, Mr. Pompeo diplomatically described the Turkish framework of the negotiations. On September 1-2, however, the climate was for military mobilization. We would not wager on what would happen tomorrow! Programs of admirable cost worth four, seven, or even ten billion euros were announced (well, leaked).

Where the funds will be found was even explained. Sacrifices will be made. These sacrifices will of course be made by workers, employees, professionals, and those all too well known to the Independent Public Revenue Authorities throughout the country. The others, "investors and higher" would like to make sacrifices, but since they are not known to the Independent Public Revenue Authorities, how can they make such? These sacrifices will be made on the altar of our new ally, France. From France, we will procure Rafale fighters and Belharrra frigates. So, for starters, seven billion euros!

Frigates fed on magic potion!

To give a measure of comparison, the amount is equivalent to the cost of an aircraft carrier of the "Charles de Gaulle" or "Queen Elizabeth" classes, along with their equipment. For the same money, we will get 18 Rafale and two frigates. It is rumored that the cost of each of the ships displacing 4,000 tons - will be 1.2 billion euros.

With the same amount, the Turks built the 30,000 ton "Anadolu" carrier, together with its equipment (except for the F-35). Any difference in cost and outcome is self-explanatory: the French frigates fell - when they were young - into the vat of magic potion made by Panoramix and of course since then they have been endowed with incredible power. Worth it to pay a little more? They even have a nice nose, like Cleopatra's!

We have nothing to say about the Rafale. It was originally designed in the 1970s and 1980s, forty years ago. This certifies their timeless value. They had all the time to evolve and of course, they evolved. Each development adds value, with the end result that each of them costs much more. Outside France, they were sold in small numbers (not on poor air forces).

The list of customers lost, as the overall cost proved to be superior to their advantages, is clearly longer. These include very "poor" countries, such as Switzerland. Greece, however, always buys from the most expensive stores! The bill, as we said, is sent to its people, to workers. It is very likely, however, that the latter will save in blood what they lose in money.

Money for the Greek defense industry

It is said that the French army, navy, and air force, are willing to fight for the sovereign rights of Greece. To be precise, a relevant votive offering has been made to the miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary of Tinos and, as we all know, the Virgin always responds to the prayers of the Greeks! But fairy tales aside, let us ask (as we are simpletons) a few basic questions.

Greece has more than 150 F-16s on paper. Do they all fly? Is every plane combat worthy? Or is something missing here, something there? Greece has 40 on paper and put Mirage. Is everything combat worthy? Are some missing? And so on, and so forth... Why not start there, instead of thinking that we are lacking eight used Rafale to make a difference right away?

With the sums that are rumored to be paid to new, or to old friends and allies, much can be done in the field of military deterrence. The potential of a national defense industry can be multiplied. And we do not mean the sale of shipyards, for example, to investors who in the purchase contract put a clause to obligatorily sell their own ships to our navy (whether we need them, or not).

An industrial infrastructure that will keep the amazing set of weapons that our country already has in combat readiness. That will be able to build combat weapons systems, starting with improvements in all the used vehicles that Greece has collected like some scrapyard. Eventually, it will be able to create its own weapons based on the real defense needs of the country.

We need a patriotic revolution

The main military advantage, as it has formed in favor of Turkey, is not due to the fact that its weapons are technologically different from the corresponding Greek ones. We are talking about 80% common weapons systems. The irresistible advantage is that Turkish weapons systems, platforms, in particular, are more expandable than ours. Milgem corvettes cost (export price) 250 million euros each and new frigates (F-100) 500 million.

The obsession of the Greek governments in dealing with the Turkish ships with ships that cost respectively 1.2 or 1.5 billion euros, exceeds the limits of the absurd. A war where one side can be in danger and the other cannot, or does not even need to start. Every one can imagine its outcome! Ultimately, in order for Greece to become worthy to defend itself, it either needs a miracle or some divine intervention.

It is either necessary (the most likely?) to retire the current political system (economic and social model together). It needs a radical change of political goals and choices. A patriotic revolution which - in the present circumstances - can only be deeply social. Or else? How do they say good morning in Turkish? Or, if you prefer the version of the "communist insurgents of the 1940s: "We'll meet in the fur shops"!*

*This is a reference to slaughtered animals being skinned.

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