via Wall Street Journal...
Mr. Turnbull, who ousted Tony Abbott as leader last month, could announce the deal to buy the vehicles from French defense contractor Thales as soon as Monday during a visit to the southeastern state of Victoria, the people said. Talks over a binding deal have been continuing since late 2011, when Thales was named as the preferred bidder for a contract then estimated to be worth 1.50 billion Australian dollars (US$1.06 billion).This was long expected so no further comment on the Hawkei purchase is necessary.
Australia is seeking to modernize its military to cope with potential threats in the Asia-Pacific region and Middle East. Australia’s air force recently began targeted airstrikes in Syria, and its troops have been part of a U.S.-led coalition fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. In addition to buying light-armored military vehicles, Australia has been readying defense contracts for jet fighters, warships and submarines together worth almost A$270 billion over the coming decades.
An A$89 billion program of warships and submarines will be at the heart of a defense strategy paper to be released within weeks, along with a separate A$10 billion project to replace a range of armored troop carriers for the army, although some defense analysts expect that could be dialed back to help contain spending.
What does deserve a bit of discussion is the part I highlighted...the warship, sub and armored troop carrier programs are expected to be dialed back to contain spending?
This is directly out of the Amos playbook. He tossed the infantry the M27 and talked up the JLTV (that we don't need and doesn't fit our ships) to take eyes off the ball of the F-35 gobbling up funds.
Everything must die so that the F-35 can live. Add Australia to the list of countries that's gutting its defense so that it can buy a plane that won't deliver what it promises.