Air Defense: Cheap East European Refurbs

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October 1, 2005: Poland, which long manufactured mobile anti-aircraft systems for the defunct Soviet Union, is now equipping some of those systems with American missiles, or at least American ideas. The most striking example of this was a plan to replace the SA-8 missiles on their mobile anti-aircraft system with American AMRAAM air-to-air missiles. This has already been done in the United States, and the Poles see the AMRAAM as a more effective missile than the Russian designed SA-8, and easily made compatible with SA-8 launchers, radars and fire control equipment. Then, it was noted that the Russian version of the AMRAAM (the RVV-AE/AA-12 "ARAMski") cost less than a third as much as the AMRAAM and had very similar capabilities. Cost would be an important factor with such weapons, as the most likely buyers would be frugal customers like India, China or Pakistan.

 


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