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13:55 2002-12-10

A Package Deal for a Future War

India to buy Russian submarines, a strategic bomber, and-

We seem to have already forgotten the old-fashioned Soviet tradition that was widely used before perestroika: unpopular goods were forced upon clients together with the purchase of popular goods. It was a package deal, and these goods would not be sold separately. Today-s Russian authorities have decided look at this Soviet tradition from a different angle

The Associated Press informs that in the coming years, Russia will sell several nuclear submarines and a strategic bomber to India. However, if India wants the deal to be successful, it must additionally purchase a batch of training fighter planes.

The Russian website Lenta.Ru quotes RF Deputy Minister of Defense Mikhail Dmitriyev as saying in an interview to India-s newspaper the Hindustan Times that Russia and India plan to conclude a package agreement by the beginning of next summer. It is supposed that the Indian armed forces will buy an undisclosed number of submarines of the Akula class and a Tu-22 bomber. It is not clear yet whether or not the Indian military structures will also buy the trainer planes. The Indian Ministry of Defense makes no comments on the issue.

Meanwhile, India is currently the world largest importer of Russian weapons. Against the background of the increasing tension in the world, it is highly likely that India will find good use for Russia-s training planes, which, by the way, can be easily transformed into battle-ready planes.

Ahtyam Ahtyrov
PRAVDA.Ru

Translated by Maria Gousseva

Read the original in Russian:  http://economics.pravda.ru/economics/2002/7/21/64/4066_weapons.html

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