THE PENTAGON --- During the run-up to the recent Shangri-La defense summit in Singapore, the U.S. Department of State’s lead for foreign arms sales pitched Indo-Pacific allies and partners on buying more American-made weapons systems.
Fresh from a whirlwind three-nation Indo-Pacific tour spent pitching military cooperation in the region and the potential purchase of U.S.-made weapons systems, Tina Kaidanow discussed her job pitching buy American during a media conference call Thursday afternoon.
Japan and India were the first stops on her trip, owing to both nation’s important strategic and purchasing importance. She also stopped at the recently concluded Shangri-La conference in Singapore.
“As they make their decisions on their programs, they want to take American companies seriously,” Kaidanow said of the military leaders from India, Japan, and other nations attending.
As State’s Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Political-Military Affairs, Kaidanow serves as a liaison between the U.S. government, U.S. defense contractors and foreign governments hoping to purchase U.S. systems.
Kaidanow would not delve into specific weapons systems she discussed, but recent media reports and corporate executive comments suggest Lockheed Martin, builder of both the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter and the F-16 Fighting Falcon, was among the firms discussed during her meetings. (end of excerpt)
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