The US government block the Afghan National Army Air Corps (ANAAC) of receiving additional Mil Mi-17 tactical transport helicopters. Washington is angry at the Russian arms sale to civil war stricken Syria.
The ANAAC is already getting 63 Mi-17V-5s (NATO-name Hip), but the Pentagon had plans to funnel US$345 million to provide the Afghans with an additional 15 machines. That is now off the table, according to US press agency AP.
The US Senate was already unhappy with earlier deals that favoured Russian Helicopters and state export company Rosoboronexport in stead of American brands like Sikorsky, Boeing or Bell. Moreover, Washington is unhappy with the Syrian government using chemical weapons in the civil war.
Russia argues that a country should be able to defend itself against what it sees as internal uprising, and questions the UN sponsored fact finding of the chemical weapons attack on August 21, 2013 outside Damascus.
© 2013 AIRheads’ editor Marcel Burger