NSA Spying Blowback Continues - Boeing Loses Brazil Jet Order

First CSCO cited Government (NSA)-related cuts for its dismal results and now Boeing, considered the front-runner, has lost a $4.5 billion contract to provide jets to Brazil because, as officials exclaimed, "the NSA problem ruined it for the Americans." Sweden's Saab won the contract instead for 36 new fighters to be delivered by 2020. As Reuters reports, one U.S. source close to the negotiations said that whatever intelligence the spying had delivered for the American government was unlikely to outweigh the commercial cost of the revelations. "Was that worth 4 billion dollars?" the source asked.

 

Via Reuters,

Brazil awarded a $4.5 billion contract to Saab AB on Wednesday to replace its aging fleet of fighter jets, a surprise coup for the Swedish company after news of U.S. spying on Brazilians helped derail Boeing's chances for the deal.

 

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Aside from the cost of the jets themselves, the agreement is expected to generate billions of additional dollars in future supply and service contracts.

 

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The timing of the announcement, after more than a decade of off-and-on negotiations, appeared to catch the companies involved by surprise.

 

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Until earlier this year, Boeing's F/A-18 Super Hornet had been considered the front runner. But revelations of spying by the U.S. National Security Agency in Brazil, including personal communication by Rousseff, led Brazil to believe it could not trust a U.S. company.

 

"The NSA problem ruined it for the Americans," a Brazilian government source said on condition of anonymity.

 

A U.S. source close to the negotiations said that whatever intelligence the spying had delivered for the American government was unlikely to outweigh the commercial cost of the revelations.

 

"Was that worth 4 billion dollars?" the source asked.

 

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"We are a peaceful country, but we won't be defenseless," Rousseff said on Wednesday at a lunch with senior officials from Brazil's military, where she said the announcement was forthcoming. "A country the size of Brazil must always be ready to protect its citizens, patrimony and sovereignty."

 

It seems the NSA Spying blowback is just beginning...

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