The UK’s purchase of the Boeing E-7A Wedgetail airborne early warning and control aircraft has already caused controversy. Jon Lake looks at the story so far.
Looking at the UK Wedgetail deal, some criticise what they claim is yet another non-competed contract award to Boeing (following similar acquisitions of AH-64E Apache helicopters, P-8A Poseidons and 16 extra CH-47 Chinooks) in which no proper evaluation of alternatives was undertaken. But others welcome a prompt, streamlined acquisition of what they see as the best available airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) platform to address an urgent requirement. The truth probably lies somewhere between these two opposing viewpoints.