March 15, 2017

U.S. military likely to send as many as 1,000 more ground troops into Syria ahead of Raqqa offensive, officials say

The U.S. military has drawn up early plans that would deploy up to 1,000 more troops into northern Syria in the coming weeks, expanding the American presence in the country ahead of the offensive on the Islamic State’s de facto capital of Raqqa, according to U.S. defense officials familiar with the matter.

The deployment, if approved by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and President Trump, would potentially double the number of U.S. forces in Syria and increase the potential for direct U.S. combat involvement in a conflict that has been characterized by confusion and competing priorities among disparate forces. 

Trump, who charged former president Barack Obama with being weak on Syria, gave the Pentagon 30 days to prepare a new counter-Islamic State plan, and Mattis submitted a broad outline to the White House at the end of February. Gen. Joseph Votel, the head of U.S. Central Command, has been filling in more details for that outline, including by how much to increase the U.S. ground presence in Syria. Votel is set to forward his recommendations to Mattis by the end of the month, and the Pentagon secretary is likely to sign off on them, according to a defense official familiar with the deliberations.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/checkpoint/wp/2017/03/15/u-s-military-probably-sending-as-many-as-1000-more-ground-troops-into-syria-ahead-of-raqqa-offensive-officials-say/?utm_term=.ddec14ff9b90

The US prepares to ‘incapacitate’ Kim: USS Carl Vinson carrying huge fleet of fighter jets arrives in South Korea as military sources reveal plan to ‘remove’ Jong-un’s war chiefs

  • USS Carl Vinson arrived at the southern port of Busan, in South Korea, to join the annual joint military exercise
  • South Korea military source says heightened presence is part of plan to decapitate North Korean leadership
  • Pyongyang has long condemned the annual joint drills – called Foal Eagle – between South Korea and the US
  • Tensions have escalated with missile launches from North and assassination of Kim Jong-Un’s half-brother 

A growing US presence off the Korean Peninsula is reportedly part of a plan aimed at ‘incapacitating’ Kim Jong Un’s despotic regime in Pyongyang should conflict break out.

A nuclear-powered US aircraft carrier arrived in South Korea on Wednesday for joint military exercises in the latest show of force against the North.

The USS Carl Vinson arrived at the southern port of Busan as US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson began a tour of the region, where tensions have escalated in recent weeks with missile launches from the nuclear-armed North and the assassination of Kim Jong-Un’s estranged half-brother in Malaysia.

More than 80 aircraft, including the fighter aircraft F/A-18F Super Hornet, the E-2C Hawkeye and the carrier-based EA-18G Growler are on board the supercarrier.

South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency claims the heightened military presence is part of a plan to decapitate North Korean leadership.

They claim a military official, who wished to remain anonymous, told them: ‘A bigger number of and more diverse U.S. special operation forces will take part in this year’s Foal Eagle and Key Resolve exercises to practice missions to infiltrate into the North, remove the North’s war command and demolition of its key military facilities.’

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4315150/US-carrier-South-Korea-force-North.html#ixzz4bOaHktcz

Another Syria? US eyes warily as Russia positions forces near Libya

IS RUSSIA PULLING A SYRIA IN LIBYA? The U.S. is watching warily as Russia appears to be positioning forces to possibly intervene in Libya, a fractured country with a barely working “Government of National Accord.” This morning, Moscow is denying that Russian special forces have deployed to an airbase in western Egypt near the border with Libya, as reported by Reuters. And U.S. aerial reconnaissance assets have spotted Russian transport aircraft and a large Russian drone at the Sidi Barrani airbase in Egypt, about 60 miles from the Libyan border, and unnamed U.S. officials are saying it’s an indication that Russia is interfering in Libya, CNN reports.

The concern, raised last week at the Senate Armed Services Committee, is that Russia may be moving to support Libyan military commander Khalifa Haftar in the same it way moved into Syria to prop up Bashar Assad in 2015. “Russia is trying to exert influence on the ultimate decision of who becomes and what entity becomes in charge of the government inside Libya. They’re working to influence that decision,” Gen. Thomas Waldhauser, head of the U.S. Africa Command, testified Thursday. When Sen. Lindsey Graham suggested, “They’re trying to do in Libya what they’ve been doing in Syria?” Waldhauser replied, “That’s a good way to characterize it.”

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/us-eyes-warily-as-russia-positions-forces-near-libya/article/feed/2176579

 

Hackers to be charged in Yahoo security breach

U.S. officials are planning to unveil charges Wednesday related to the theft of personal data that affected hundreds of millions of Yahoo users and disrupted the company’s sale to Verizon, according to people familiar with the matter.

At least some of the alleged hackers have ties to the Russian government, said the people, who added the national security division of the Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation plan to announce the charges Wednesday morning.

In September, Yahoo revealed hackers penetrated its network in late 2014 and stole personal data on more than 500 million users. The company concluded that it had been breached by “a state-sponsored actor.” The 2014 incident was separate from another much larger theft, affecting more than a billion accounts, that Yahoo disclosed in December and that dated back to 2013.

http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2017/03/15/hackers-to-be-charged-in-yahoo-security-breach.html

13 arrested for ‘deep corruption’ at Israeli Aerospace Industries

Months-long covert probe yields suspicions of fraud, money laundering against employees of IAI, former senior IDF officer

Police arrested 13 people, including a former high-ranking IDF officer, on Wednesday morning, following a months-long “deep corruption” probe into the Israeli Aerospace Industries, police said.

They are suspected of a wide range of corruption charges, including fraud and money laundering.

The suspects came from IAI and private companies who either supplied or were supplied by IAI, along with the aforementioned former senior Israel Defense Forces officer, who police said was “well known in the defense establishment.”

A number of other people were “detained for investigation,” but not formally arrested, police said.

IAI said it would cooperate with the probe.

http://www.timesofisrael.com/13-arrested-in-deep-corruption-probe-at-israeli-aerospace-industries/

Syria conflict: Suicide bomber targets Damascus courthouse

[Syrian state-owned television says at least 25 people have been killed after a suicide bomber detonated his explosives’ vest inside the main judicial building in the capital Damascus. http://www.kansascity.com/news/nation-world/article138584288.html#storylink=cpy%5D

Dozens of people have been killed or injured in a suicide bomb attack at the main court building in the Syrian capital Damascus, state media report.

State TV said a militant had blown himself up inside the Palace of Justice in the central Hamidiya district.

An AFP news agency journalist reported seeing ambulances and fire engines parked outside the building.

It comes on the sixth anniversary of the start of the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-39277179

US demands UN pull report accusing Israel of apartheid

Envoy Nikki Haley says Washington outraged by publication, calls for UN chief to scrap it; Israel slams document as ‘despicable’

The United States on Wednesday demanded that UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres withdraw a report by a UN body accusing Israel of imposing apartheid on the Palestinians and of racially dominating them.

Guterres distanced himself from the report by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) but US Ambassador Nikki Haley said it should be scrapped altogether.

“The United States is outraged by the report,” said Haley in a statement. “The United Nations secretariat was right to distance itself from this report, but it must go further and withdraw the report altogether.”

Based in Beirut, ESCWA is comprised of 18 Arab countries, according to its website, which lists the state of Palestine as a full member, and works to strengthen cooperation and promote development.

“That such anti-Israel propaganda would come from a body whose membership nearly universally does not recognize Israel is unsurprising,” said Haley.

http://www.timesofisrael.com/us-demands-un-pull-report-accusing-israel-of-apartheid/

 

Second Damascus suicide bomb attack hit restaurant, several casualties: state media

The second suicide bomber to attack the Syrian capital of Damascus on Wednesday set off an explosive device inside a restaurant in the al-Rabweh area, to the west of an earlier suicide attack, state media said.

State-run SANA news agency said there were several casualties. No further details were immediately available.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-syria-bomb-idUSKBN16M1S6?

 

Retired admiral, 8 others charged in latest ‘Fat Leonard’ indictments

Navy officers indicted for fraud, bribery

Christopher P. Cavas, Defense News , WVEC 7:17 AM. EDT March 15, 2017

WASHINGTON — Retired US Navy Rear Adm. Bruce Loveless, four retired Navy captains, a Marine colonel and three other individuals were arrested and charged Tuesday in the latest indictments related to the Glenn Defense Marine Asia (GDMA) bribery scandal. The investigation is also known as the “Fat Leonard” case, after a nickname for GDMA’s former chief executive officer, Leonard Francis.

The latest federal indictment charges the individuals with accepting luxury travel, elaborate dinners and the services of prostitutes from Singapore-based GDMA, according to the US Department of Justice, all in exchange for classified and internal US Navy information.

Glenn Defense Marine Asia was one of the biggest husbanding firms in the western Pacific, handling a large variety of services for ships visiting ports throughout the region.

With Tuesday’s arrests, a total of 25 individuals have been charged in connection with the corruption and fraud investigation into GDMA, the Justice Department said in a press release. Of those charged, Justice said, 20 are current or former U.S. Navy officials and five are GDMA executives. Thirteen of those charged already have pleaded guilty.

http://www.13newsnow.com/news/military/retired-admiral-8-others-charged-in-latest-fat-leonard-indictments/422706226

 

Palestinian woman shot during suspected car-ramming attempt

No serious injuries reported as female assailant tries to drive into bus stop at West Bank’s Etzion Junction

A car that was driven into a bus stop in an apparent terror attack in the Etzion Junction in the West Bank on March 15, 2017. (Screen capture: Facebook)

A car that was driven into a bus stop in an apparent terror attack in the Etzion Junction in the West Bank on March 15, 2017. (Screen capture: Facebook)

No Israelis were seriously injured in the incident, though a 28-year-old woman in advanced stages of pregnancy was taken to the hospital after experiencing a panic attack, according to the Magen David Adom ambulance service.

The Palestinian woman’s condition was not immediately known, but she was receiving treatment from the Israel Defense Forces, MDA said.

The incident occurred shortly before 4:00 p.m.

A photograph from the scene, posted on social media, showed the Palestinian woman inside her car, which was pressed up against the metal bollards surrounding a bus stop.

http://www.timesofisrael.com/palestinian-woman-shot-during-suspected-car-ramming-attempt/

Iran vows to ‘liberate’ Golan Heights

New Hezbollah-backed group aims to help Syria reconquer Golan Heights.

Contact Editor

Chana Roberts

A new Iran-funded Iraqi Hezbollah “brigade” aims to “liberate” the Golan Heights from Israel, spokesman Seyed Hashem Moussavi last week said last week at a news conference in Iran.

According to Iranian news agency Tasnim, Moussavi, who heads the Harakat Hezbollah al-Nujaba terror sub-group, said, “After the latest victories [in Syria and Iraq], we established the ‘Golan Liberation Brigade’.

“This is a trained army with specific plans. If the government of Syria requests, we and our allies are ready to take action to liberate Golan. We will not permit Arab and Islamic countries in the region to remain in the grasps of the occupiers.”

According to Moussavi, the new terror group is well-trained and equipped with Iranian rockets and Russian-made T-90 tanks.

Harakat Hezbollah al-Nujaba Secretary-General Akram al-Kabi said, “The declaration regarding the formation of the Liberation of the Golan Brigade is not only a media campaign, but the real goal of the movement.”

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/226732

Iran sends destroyer and warship to the Gulf of Aden

In a provocative move, Iran announced sending the “45 Group” of the Iranian Naval Force, which consists of a ship and a destroyer to the Gulf of Aden and Bab al-Mandab. The tension caused by the continued friction between the Iranian gunboats and US forces located in international waters is due to the persistent attempts of Iran to assist and provide the Yemeni militia with weapons.

Tasnim news agency, the subsidiary to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, claimed that “Iranian warships are going to the Gulf of Aden and Bab al Mandab “in an effort to maintain the Iranian merchant ships,” currently docked at the Omani ports. Ever since Operation Decisive Storm, launched by the Arab coalition under the leadership of Saudi Arabia in March 2015 to regain legitimacy in Yemen, the Iranian navy has stepped up its provocative moves against US forces in the region.

According to observers, Iran aims to control the corridors of international navigation in order to continue to tamper with and send weapons to its allies in the region like the Houthi Militia in Yemen, the regime of Bashar al-Assad in Syria and the Hezbollah Militia in Lebanon.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/gulf/2017/03/14/Iran-sends-destroyer-and-warship-to-the-Gulf-of-Aden.html

Explosion hits security convoy in southeast Turkey

Highway blast targeting security forces kills two soldiers on a road linking the cities of Mardin and Diyarbakir.

At least two soldiers have been killed in an explosion on a highway in southeast Turkey, according to security sources.

The troops on Wednesday were carrying out operations to detect mines in the region when suspected fighters from the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) detonated a previously planted mine, Turkey’s private Dogan news agency reported.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which targeted a vehicle loaded with soldiers as it passed by a road linking the cities of Mardin and Diyarbakir.

Ambulances rushed to the scene following the blast.

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/03/explosion-hits-security-convoy-southeast-turkey-170315065259074.html

EU says Turkey ‘completely detached from reality’

‘The European Union is not joining Turkey, Turkey is joining the EU,’ European Commission president said.

Two top EU leaders on Wednesday slammed the Turkish government for comparing some EU countries to Nazis and said Ankara was moving further away from membership of the bloc.

EU-Turkey ties soured further last week when Dutch authorities barred Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu from landing in Rotterdam after a political rally at which he was slated to appear was canceled. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan responded by saying “Nazism is still widespread in the West.”

Speaking to a debate at European Parliament in Strasbourg, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said Erdoğan’s comments had “scandalized” him, and would keep Turkey far from its goal of EU membership.

“I will never accept this comparison,” Juncker said. “If you are establishing that comparison — the one who is doing this is taking distance from Europe, not trying to enter the EU.”

“The European union is not joining Turkey, Turkey is joining the EU,” he added.

http://www.politico.eu/article/eu-says-turkey-completely-detached-from-reality/

High-profile Twitter accounts including BBC, Amnesty and Forbes are hacked with Nazi jibes by Erdogan supporters as part of Turkish diplomatic row with Holland and EU

  • Accounts hijacked included the European Parliament and UK health department

  • Several news outlets also had there verified accounts hacked 

  • The attack appears to have come through a third party app,  Twitter Counter

Dozens of high profile Twitter accounts have been hacked, with swastikas and messages in support of Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan.The escalating diplomatic spat between Turkey and the Netherlands spread online with a large number of Twitter accounts, many with no apparent connection to the dispute, were hijacked and replaced with anti-Nazi messages in Turkish.The attacks, which appeared to be simply a form of political vandalism, used the hashtags #Nazialmanya or #Nazihollanda, took over accounts of high-profile CEOs, publishers, government agencies and also some regular Twitter users.

The verified Twitter account for Forbes.com was among those hacked. Its profile pictures were changed to the Turkish flag and a symbol of the Ottoman Empire

The verified Twitter account for Forbes.com was among those hacked. Its profile pictures were changed to the Turkish flag and a symbol of the Ottoman Empire

Several non-profit agencies including Amnesty International and UNICEF USA were also targeted by hackers. Messages were posted in Turkish on their accounts 

Several non-profit agencies including Amnesty International and UNICEF USA were also targeted by hackers. Messages were posted in Turkish on their accounts

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4315458/High-profile-Twitter-accounts-hijacked-Turkish-Dutch-protest.html#ixzz4bQadp2DM

Taiwan says Chinese military threat grows, U.S. regional strategy unclear

By J.R. Wu
TAIPEI (Reuters) – China’s accelerated military development and recent activity by its military aircraft and ships around Taiwan pose an increased threat to the self-ruled island, according to a Taiwanese government defense report draft reviewed by Reuters.The 2017 Quadrennial Defence Review (QDR) also highlights the uncertainty over the future strategic direction of the United States in the region, the impact of Japan flexing its military capabilities and “conflict crisis” potential in the disputed South China Sea.”The recent activity of Chinese jets and ships around Taiwan shows the continued rise in (China’s) military threat capabilities,” highlighting the importance of Taiwan’s need to defend itself, the review will say.”In addition to posing a military threat to our country, it also has a negative impact on regional stability.”The document is due to be presented to parliament on Thursday by Taiwan defense minister Feng Shih-kuan. The defense ministry had no comment on the report on
Wednesday.https://uk.news.yahoo.com/exclusive-taiwan-says-chinese-military-threat-grows-u-032609804.html

On Monday morning, North Korea launched four missiles from the northwest corner of the country that traveled 620 miles before landing in the Sea of Japan.While none of the launches were the long-awaited test of an intercontinental-range ballistic missile — the sort of weapon that could reach the United States — the salvo was a big deal in its own way. Pyongyang very vividly demonstrated the warnings from Thae Yong-ho, a high-ranking North Korean diplomat who defected last year and described how the country was taking the final steps to arm its missile units with nuclear weapons. North Korea is developing an offensive doctrine for the large-scale use of nuclear weapons in the early stages of a conflict. When combined with what we know about U.S. and South Korean war plans, this fact raises troubling questions about whether a crisis on the Korean peninsula might erupt into nuclear war before President Donald Trump has time to tweet about it.

http://foreignpolicy.com/2017/03/09/north-korea-is-practicing-for-nuclear-war/   Christian pastors accused of smuggling North Korean defectors out of ChinaFoxNews.com

China arrested two South Korean Christian pastors for allegedly helping to smuggle North Korean defectors out of China, the latest in a string of detentions and expulsions aimed at South Korean Christians in the past several months.One of the pastors was arrested with his wife as the pair tried to board a flight from China to South Korea and the other was arrested at a Chinese hotel, the Yonhap news agency reported, citing South Korean groups.The pastors remained under arrest Wednesday, however, their wives had been released, Reuters reported.The arrests come on the heels of a mass expulsion of South Korean missionaries from the Jilin province – which borders North Korea – in just the past few months, according to media reports noted by Christianity Today. Anywhere from 30 to 70 pastors have been kicked out of the area.http://www.foxnews.com/world/2017/03/15/christian-pastors-accused-smuggling-north-korean-defectors-out-china.html

McCain: Rand Paul ‘Is Now Working for Vladimir Putin’

[Editor’s Note: It violates all rules of Senatorial courtesy for a Senator to attack another with an allegation that suggests a lack of patriotism.  Where this will lead is still uncertain, but McCain has been leading personal attacks against the President and now against a sitting Senator.] 
Sen. John McCain on Wednesday directly accused fellow Republican Sen. Rand Paul of working for Russian President Vladimir Putin. While speaking from the Senate floor in support of a bill advancing Montenegro’s bid to join NATO, McCain noted objection from the Kentucky senator, saying, “You are achieving the objectives of Vladimir Putin… trying to dismember this small country which has already been the subject an attempted coup.” He continued: “If they object, they are now carrying out the desires and ambitions of Vladimir Putin and I do not say that lightly.” Several moments later, after McCain asked for unanimous consent to move the bill forward, Sen. Paul raised his objection and then exited the room. This set off McCain, who railed against Paul: “I note the senator from Kentucky leaving the floor without justification or any rationale for the action he has just taken. That is really remarkable, that a senator blocking a treaty that is supported by the overwhelming number, perhaps 98—at least—of his colleagues would come to the floor and object and walk away.” He then directly connected Paul to the Russians: “The only conclusion you can draw when he walks away is he has no justification for his objection to having a small nation be part of NATO that is under assault from the Russians. So I repeat again, the senator from Kentucky is now working for Vladimir Putin.”http://www.thedailybeast.com/cheats/2017/03/15/mccain-rand-paul-is-now-working-for-vladimir-putin.html?via=desktop&source=copyurl

Is Russia helping China build hypersonic weapons?

As the U.S. ramps up its military presence in Asia, Beijing is increasingly interested in Moscow’s hypersonic glide developments.
The race to build the world’s fastest nuclear delivery system – the hypersonic glide vehicle (HGV) – has gained steam. While the United States is clearly in the lead, Russia and China aren’t too far behind, with reports suggesting that Moscow – in a reprise of the friendly 1950s – is influencing Beijing’s HGV programme.In a new study titled ‘Factoring Russia into the US-Chinese Equation on Hypersonic Glide Vehicles’, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) says Russia is a factor that is shaping Chinese hypersonic research.In the backdrop of the growing intersection between China’s and Russia’s strategic postures and threat perceptions – particularly in the Asia-Pacific – it is possible that there is some correlation between their hypersonic programmes.

According to SIPRI, two signs point to a Russia-China nexus. One, there are as many as 872 Chinese-language texts on HGVs that mention Russia, constituting 52 per cent of the total number of Chinese articles and papers on hypersonic glide. Secondly, China’s flight test of its DF-ZF hypersonic glide system in April 2016 occurred just days after Russia carried out its own test.

“This is more than mere coincidence. A review of more than a decade of Chinese writing on hypersonic and boost-glide technologies reveals growing interest in and research on Russia’s hypersonic glide vehicle programme,” says the SIPRI report.http://rbth.com/blogs/continental_drift/2017/03/14/russia-china-hypersonic-weapons-719186

New helicopters join Russian Navy amid quest for ‘radically new’ weapons

New helicopters join Russian Navy amid quest for ‘radically new’ weapons
Ka-52K attack helicopters, Ka-31R radar surveillance helicopters, and Ka-226T shipborne helicopters will join the Russian Navy as part of the military modernization program that will run through 2025, the navy said Wednesday. In addition, the navy will receive a modernized version of the Ka-27PL choppers already in use.“In the period until 2025, Russian naval aviation will be equipped with the new generation ship-based helicopters and helicopters that have undergone a profound modernization,” the navy said in a press release.The navy hopes that alongside “newest frigates, corvettes, and patrol ships,” that are designed to carry choppers, the latest arsenal will “significantly improve” the efficiency of assigned naval tasks throughout the world.The Ka-52K ship-based reconnaissance and combat helicopter is set to become the cream of the crop of the Russian naval force. The chopper, made by the Kamov rotorcraft manufacturing company, made its first flight in March 2015 before being unveiled in Russia at the International Maritime Defense Show in July of the same year.https://www.rt.com/news/380818-russian-navy-new-helicopters/

TASS: A Russian expert also commented on media rumors about the involvement of a private Russian military company in Libya

MOSCOW, March 15. /TASS/. The greatest flow of weapons and other military hardware to the Middle East is from Ukraine’s territory, the president of the Middle East Institute, Yevgeny Satanovsky, told TASS in an interview.”The greatest flow of weapons to the Middle East is from Ukraine, of course, and to a certain extent, from Belarus,” he said.Satanovsky also commented on media rumors about the involvement of a private Russian military company in current events in Libya.”I’ve never heard anything about any private Russian military companies from any trustworthy source,” he said. “There are private military companies around the world. The Chinese have them, and so do the British, the French and many others. Private military companies or the French Foreign Legion have had many employees of Russian descent since 1991,” he said.Satanovsky recalled that the activity of many foreign military units in Libya failed to receive proper media coverage.”In Libya today French and Italian commandoes fight on the Khalifa Haftar’s side, but everybody keeps quiet about that. There are British and US units on his opponents’ side. There is everybody,” Satanovsky said.”It is very likely there may be some people who can be heard using Russian swear words. But swear words are no way to tell between, say a Ukrainian mercenary or a Russian born in the Smolensk Region. The so-called ‘Russian hackers’ turned out to be Ukrainian just recently. Is there anything else to say?”http://tass.com/world/935614

Poland’s new weapons and delayed tenders

Hubschrauber Mil Mi-24D (Grzegorz Polak)
Poland’s government, eyeing Vladimir Putin’s moves elsewhere in the region, is purchasing new military hardware. But Warsaw is not only seeking the best possible products.”Polish workers will be given the opportunity to build state-of-the-art helicopters,” said Defense Minister Antoni Macierewicz a month ago in parliament in Warsaw. Three companies were invited to submit their bids for 16 utility helicopters. “They have until March 13,” Macierewicz said at the time. But now, an armed forces spokesman has announced that this deadline cannot be met. They ministry is waiting for one of the bidders, until March 27.
Previous tender with Airbus controversially scrapped
The tender was only up for grabs in the first place because the government unexpectedly canceled the purchase of 50 European Airbus helicopters in the autumn of 2016. The Airbus group failed to meet Warsaw’s requirements for investments in Poland, the government said when explaining its decision. After the deal was shot down, the French manufacturer was so upset that French President Francois Hollande canceled a visit to Poland at short notice.

 

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