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Thursday, December 9, 2021

The Greek-French defense agreement is of strategic importance

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of Christos Kapoutsis

 The Greek-French defense agreement, announced by the Prime Minister of Greece and the President of France and signed by the co-Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Defense of the two countries, today in Paris, has two parts, complementary or more precisely two sections, one of which is meaningless. . It is the purely military-operational part and the international-political and diplomatic part. In the defense-industrial sector, we have the acquisition of 3 French Belharra type frigates for the Greek Navy, which are the first digital frigates. And they are equipped with state-of-the-art military technology, with the most modern French and European War Industry. Each Belharra Frigate is an autonomous and self-sufficient weapon system, with top performance in all types of warfare, such as anti-submarine, anti-ship, anti-aircraft, asymmetric, electronic and all forms of cyber warfare. Missile (NCM), which has a range of more than 1.000 kilometers. That is, the frigate can charter near Sounio and accurately hit Strategic land targets on the opposite side of the Aegean. They are equipped with the A50 Sylver missile launch system (32 cells for Aster 30 anti-aircraft / anti-ballistic missiles or for the combination of Aster 15/30 or VL MICA NG missiles). That is, it has the ability to successfully deal with any air threat, to intercept…. either a fighter jet or a rocket. Of course, they have modern torpedoes. Among the advantages is the active electronic scanning radar (AESA), which has a range of 500 km and high target detection capabilities, even ultrasonic moving targets with stealth characteristics. ALL of these, namely the Belharra Frigates and the ready Squadron of the 24 RAFAL fighter aircraft, provide the Greek Armed Forces, with the current data, not a relative, but an absolute armament, in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean. Thus, any threat, to the detriment of the national security of Greece or a practical challenge to our national sovereignty, is absolutely manageable.

The Second section of the Greek-French defense agreement, which is probably the quintessence of the agreement, is of course, the clause of mutual military assistance. The Agreement contains (Article 2) a mutual defense assistance clause in case one of the two countries is attacked on its territory. In this way, Greece is shielded against threats in the Aegean and especially in the Eastern Mediterranean. The interesting thing is that in this Greek-French defense agreement, the role of the USA is active, either positively or negatively. The recent US-British-Australian Defense Agreement reveals the shift of American Strategic Interest from the eastern Mediterranean to the Indian and Pacific Oceans, leaving room for regional powers that will surely belong to the Western World, such as the West. which will now have Greece as an important ally partner. This is the reason why the USA withdrew its interest, to supply the Greek fleet with American frigates, thus turning on the "green light" for the purchase of French frigates. Also, Greece and France, with the defense agreement signed, strengthen the political perspective of the strategic autonomy of the EU, whenever it decides to acquire a single European foreign and defense policy. In any case, we have a significant geo-strategic upgrade of Greece. The first state-of-the-art "digital" frigate Belharra is expected to be delivered in 2025 and the last in 2026. Probably a quarter a little later. The cost, in total, will exceed 5 billion. euro. However, a problem has arisen. It seems that the new Frigates will be built in France…. If this happens, then the Greek Shipyards will probably go on adventures.

 

 

 

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