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US think-tank wish list: 48 F-16 jets, 6 mini subs for AFP modernization

Friday, July 6, 2012

A US-based national security think-tank’s assessment of the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ (AFP) modernization is probably a case of wishful thinking.

According to the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), for the Philippines to have a credible military defense capability, it needs 48 F-16 jetfighters, four to six mini submarines, more well-armed frigates and corvette-size combat vessels and minesweepers.

“This level of capability would far exceed current Philippine planning and finances and it would be in Washington’s interest to make it easier for Manila to acquire excess US fighters, frigates and other weapons system and encourage other countries such as Japan and South Korea to help modernize the Armed Forces of the Philippines, it said in an article ‘Defending the Philippines: Military modernization and the challenges ahead.’”

But the AFP has been struggling in its modernization program for over two decades, leaving its Air Force without a single jetfighter interceptor since 2005 and the Navy with old warships, some of them World War II vintage.

Most, if not all, of its aircraft and ships were provided by the United States when the latter was still maintaining its air and naval bases in the Philippines under the RP-US Military Bases Agreement (MBA) until its expiration in 1991 when the Philippine Senate did not extend the MBA..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribune.net.ph/index.php/headlines/item/1160-us-think-tank-wish-list-48-f-16-jets-6-mini-subs-for-afp-modernization

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