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Letter from France. The French defense industry seeks an expanded position in the Ukraine military marketplace.
My Crohn’s flare has retreated and I’m feeling pretty good today. Thanks for all the messages wishing me well.
Tomorrow we fly back to JFK and then sweet home Chicago on Tuesday.
One can only guess what would have happened had the MAGAs gotten their way and shut down the government today. I didn’t want to consider the possibility that it would have caused chaos at the airports with flight delays and cancellations on the day we flew home.
While more time on the Cote d’ Azur isn’t the worst thing, our funds are running short for an even more unplanned extended holiday and I might have had to go searching for the French version of a Motel Six.
The funding bill that passed Congress late yesterday got everything the Democrats wanted except for more money for the war in Ukraine. They promised the money would come in a later bill.
The only Democrat who voted with the MAGAs was Chicago’s north side Congressman Mike Quigley who voted no because the bill did not contain the money for the continuing war in Ukraine.
Quigley is Congress’ most outspoken war hawk. Even knowing the money would come, he voted to continue the budget crisis.
Meanwhile an article today in France’s La Monde reports on a visit to Ukraine by representatives of the French military industrial complex.
Yes. They have one too.
On Thursday, September 28, the French defense industry engaged in an unprecedented promotional exercise in Kyiv. Minister of Armed Forces Sébastien Lecornu, accompanied by around 20 manufacturers, visited the capital of Ukraine for the first edition of an arms forum. The objective of this forum was to review the terms of French military support to Ukraine, as the war continued, and as stocks dwindled both in France and among other Western allies.
"Transfers [free of charge] cannot be made indefinitely," the minister said during this visit, where he met with President Volodymyr Zelensky and his new defense counterpart, Rustem Umerov, appointed on September 6 following the removal of his predecessor due to corruption. "We have reached a point where we must pivot. Industrial partnership should become the norm, while transfers should be the exception," said sources close to the minister.
It seems that there is heated competition within the western alliance as to who can gain the greatest market share in selling arms to Ukraine.
France feels left out and wants to do better.
France wants to position itself on the Ukrainian market more globally, not only donating old weapons and helping with air defense systems but also encouraging Ukrainians to place defense orders in France and setting up joint production.
French Defense Minister Sebastien Lecornu said this in an interview with France Info after his visit to Ukraine, Ukrinform reports.
"The war will last and the transfer of equipment within the French armed forces has limits by definition. Are we going to continue to do it? Yes, because thanks to our military programs, we are going to withdraw lots of old equipment from the French army - in favor of much newer equipment - which we will be able to give to Ukraine, and to other partner countries. However, if we want to hold out, we must be able to directly 'connect' French industrialists to the Ukrainian army," Lecornu said.
As it has always been, war is a profit center. And in Ukraine when it comes to war profits, the future looks good.