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RAAF cruise missiles

NZ government take notice!

Canberra plans 'lethal' air force
The new missiles can hit targets up to 400 km away
Australia is to spend up to A$450m (US$320m) on cruise missiles to give its military the "most lethal capacity" for air combat in the region.
The new missiles, fitted to fighter and patrol jets, could hit air and sea targets up to 400km (250 miles) away, said Defence Minister Robert Hall.

The plan would give Australia the most powerful air force in the region.

Indonesia has voiced concerns about the proposal, questioning why Canberra is boosting its offensive capability.

The missiles include air-to-surface and anti-ship versions that would be fitted to the country's F/A-18 Hornet fighters and AP-3C Orion maritime surveillance aircraft.

The range of the missiles is up to four times the range of any missiles currently available to the air force, reported The Australian newspaper.

"The new weapon will significantly enhance the [Australian Defence Force's] air strike capability, providing a long-range, accurate and lethal attack against a range of targets including fixed and re-locatable targets on land and sea," said Mr Hall in a statement.

"Combined with the new air-to-air missiles and upgraded precision-guided bombs, Australia's fighter jets will be the region's most lethal capacity for air combat and strike operations," he said.


Last month, Australia agreed to work with the US, its closest ally, on a controversial missile defence shield.

In a joint statement, Canberra and Washington said they shared "deep concerns about the proliferation of ballistic missiles capable of carrying weapons of mass destruction".

We have to ask ourselves against whom is this long-range cruise missile being directed

Indonesian Foreign Ministry

A spokesman for the Indonesian Foreign Ministry said on Thursday that this latest plan for long-range missiles was even more alarming than the missile shield plan.

"We had questions [regarding the shield], what will be the main impact of such a shield in terms of its potential destabilising impact on the regional security," he said.

"If there is now an idea of certain governments or certain countries in the region acquiring long-range missiles, that will elevate the issue one step further, because we are talking here about an offensive capability, no longer a defensive capability," he said.

Australian Prime Minister John Howard dismissed regional concerns.

"We have no hostile designs on any of our neighbours and they won't be concerned about this because we don't have any hostile designs on them," he told reporters.

Australia's main opposition Labor Party said the government had not done enough to reassure the region.

"What has [the government] done to explain this to the countries in the region with whom we must be associated in the struggle with fundamentalist terror?" said defence spokesman Kim Beazley.

"As far as I can see, the government has made absolutely no effort. In normal circumstances that would be bad, but in circumstances where we need to be alongside them, it's very foolish indeed."

The government is deciding between three systems: the Joint Air-to-Surface Stand-Off Missile (JASS), which has the longest range; a KEPD 350 precision-attack cruise missile; and the Stand-off Land Attack Missile Expanded Response (SLAM-ER), based on a Harpoon anti-ship missile.

By xpert11: posted on 27-8-2004

Actually Indonesia has a point. What ARE these weapons for?

I suspect its merely purchasing weapons for pro american political reasons rather than actual need.

Heck if Indonesia invaded Australia, a few cruiise missiles would do little good, I think they have 300 million people.
By netchicken: posted on 29-8-2004

I think they brought the weapons to act as a deterrent. (if you attack us we will sink your troop transports before they reach our shores.):sh
By xpert11: posted on 29-8-2004

we liike to have fun things to play with LOL

The Duke

By The Duke: posted on 25-12-2005

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