Will the Rafale be the heir to the Mirage III for the future of the French aeronautical industry?

Fast, agile, powerful and well-armed, the Mirage III is unquestionably a legend in military fighter aviation around the world. In the hands of Israeli pilots, Dassault Aviation's single-engine delta-wing fighter prevailed against Arab MiGs and Hunters during the Six-Day and Yom Kippur wars, and played a decisive role in the Jewish state's victory in the these two conflicts, adorning the aircraft with an aura of efficiency and performance that built its export success with 1400 aircraft built (Mirage III and V), and which imposed Dassault Aviation's fighters on the international market during several decades.…

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Does Franco-German cooperation around FCAS worry the countries of the Middle East?

The Persian Gulf countries, and their allies in the Middle East, have been loyal customers of the French defense industry for several decades, and in particular for Dassault Aviation's combat aircraft. Thus, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and its ally, Egypt, have between them ordered 170 Rafale aircraft, i.e. nearly 60% of the exports recorded to date for this aircraft, after having ordered 100 Mirage 2000, i.e. 35% of exports for this model. Further upstream, Iraq had been Dassault's largest customer for its Mirage F1 after the Air Force, and Egypt the...

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The Su-75 Checkmate returns to the UAE to try to permanently remove the F-35

The United Arab Emirates were identified as a strategic prospect by Rostec, right from the start of the communication around this program. Moscow and Abu Dhabi have indeed been in discussion around a joint light fighter program for several years, while the Arab state has already purchased several major pieces of equipment from Russian manufacturers, including the Pantsir S-1 anti-aircraft system. . With the announcement of the Emirati intention to acquire 50 F-35A from the United States, the chances for the Russian defense industrial conglomerate to impose itself in the country drastically declined. With Joe Biden putting this program on hold following his…

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Defense technologies that made the news in 2021

Despite the crisis linked to the Covid-19 pandemic, the news in 2021 was often marked by certain defense technologies, in a geopolitical context of growing tensions and critical crises. From Australia's surprise cancellation of the order for French-built conventionally powered submarines to switch to US-British nuclear attack submarines, to hypersonic missiles; from underwater drones to China's new fractional orbital bombardment system; these defense technologies, long in the background of the world media scene, found themselves in the news, and sometimes in the headlines during this year. In this two-part article,…

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UAE Suspends F-35 Purchase Negotiations

Then in the middle of the electoral campaign for his re-election to the White House, Donald Trump scored a big blow in the summer of 2020 by announcing the signing of a peace agreement between the United Arab Emirates and Israel, an agreement which was quickly joined by other Sunni Gulf monarchies in an effort to normalize relations with the Jewish state after several decades of tension over the Palestinian cause. If the points of convergence were numerous, in particular about the potential risk posed by the Iranian nuclear program, the United Arab Emirates took the opportunity to negotiate with Donald Trump the sale of Defense technologies hitherto reserved...

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UAE Mirage 2000-9 interests Morocco and Egypt

There are signs that do not deceive. Barely a week after the announcement made of the order of 80 Rafale by the air force of the United Arab Emirates, that the sixty Mirage 2000-9 acquired at the end of the 90s by the country, and which must precisely be replaced by the Rafales ordered, would have already found takers. Indeed, according to several sources of information, it appears that Egypt, but also Morocco, would have approached Abu Dhabi in order to acquire these fighter planes which still have a remarkable operational potential. If Cairo's request is not surprising, the air force...

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Rafale order from UAE could lead to new short-term contracts

The order for 80 Rafale aircraft signed last Friday by the United Arab Emirates has profoundly upset the industrial dynamics around the French combat aircraft, by securing the sustainability and production of the assembly line over the next ten years, and by putting the Rafale and the F35 on an equal footing, Abu Dhabi having confirmed that it was still determined to acquire the 50 American combat aircraft from Lockheed-Martin to evolve alongside the new French aircraft. But this order also puts several partners of France under pressure, who had signified a potential intention to order the device, so…

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Industry, jobs, geopolitics and technology: the key points of the Rafale contract in the United Arab Emirates

The announcement of the exceptional order of 80 Rafale combat aircraft by the United Arab Emirates was received in France in a contrasting manner. As has now become the rule with each announcement of a major defense contract, a significant number of political leaders, but also NGOs, journalists and editorial writers have questioned the relevance of this contract. It is true that the same arguments are not always put forward. Thus in the case of Greece or Croatia, the reservations put forward concerned the payment capacities of the country, but also the impact on the fleet of…

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Why is the Rafale F4 standard meeting such international success?

With the announcement of the firm order for 80 combat aircraft by the United Arab Emirates, the Rafale has become, with 242 aircraft ordered for export from 6 air forces, the greatest international commercial success of its generation, clearly outclassing other aircraft of the same category such as the Eurofighter Typhoon, the Super Hornet or the Su-35, and even lighter aircraft of the same generation such as the Swedish Gripen or the American F-16 Block 70/72+ Viper. In the world, only the Lockheed-Martin F-35, which enjoys unwavering strategic support from Washington and an R&D budget 12 times greater than that of the aircraft...

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In addition to the Rafale contract, the UAE orders 12 H225M Caracal from Airbus Helicopters

Obviously, Emmanuel Macron did not travel for nothing during his express tour of the Middle East from December 2 to 4. Indeed, in addition to the historic contract of €16 billion for the delivery of 80 Rafale combat aircraft to the F4 standard and a stock of MICA NG and Scalp missiles, the United Arab Emirates has also ordered 12 H225M maneuver helicopters from France. Caracal, for an estimated amount of between €700m and €800m. This providential order for Airbus Helicopter and in particular for the Marignane site where the aircraft will be assembled, will allow the European helicopter manufacturer to pass without incident the few…

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