The RfI has called for a medium-range missile defense system that would
include four batteries of interceptors. Other elements of the system would
be a long-range early-warning radar, command and control system and
interoperability with Turkey's air defense network.
The sources said the first missile defense system would be purchased
directly from a foreign contractor. They said any second contract must
include significant technology transfer to and co-production by Ankara.
The United States has offered Turkey the PAC-3 missile defense system,
purchased by the U.S. Army as well as requested by at least two Gulf
Cooperation Council states. PAC-3 manufacturer Lockheed Martin has held
several briefings for the Turkish General Staff and SSM.
Israel has briefed Turkey on the Arrow-2 missile defense system. The
sources said Israel has offered to sell Ankara the Green Pine radar and
Golden Citron C2 system. The Arrow-2 interceptors would be sold by Boeing,
which produces Arrow-2 in the United States for the Israeli military.
Russia has proposed its S-400 and the older S-300PMU2 air and missile
defense systems to Ankara. The sources said Moscow has quoted a price for
either system that was much lower than PAC-3.
China has also offered what the sources termed a missile defense system.
The sources, however, would not elaborate on the Chinese offer. Beijing has
been experimenting with missile defense, but was not known to have developed
Over the next few months, the sources said, SSM would draft
recommendations on advancing the missile defense tender. They said SSM was
expected to propose negotiations with the governments of those foreign
contractors that submitted bids.
The United States has pressed hard for Turkey's selection of PAC-3. In
February 2008, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates visited Ankara and was
said to have argued that its selection of PAC-3 would enable the United
States to form a missile defense umbrella that would protect much or all of
Turkey as well as other areas of the Middle East.
"Obviously, PAC-3 is the leading candidate," the source said. "The
challenger would be the S-400, but given that Turkey is a NATO ally, this
will probably not be a contest."