's lease-purchase of the KC
-767s is not a done deal yet. There are powerful opponents of this program (Sen. John McCain of AZ
, for instance) who are working to kill the program, drastically restructure it or stall the final approval until after the 2004 elections. The USAF
is also being called on the carpet by Congress for sharing details of Airbus' proposal for the A-330 tanker with Boeing. I'd say the Congressional mindset is 50% in favor of the program, and 50% thinking the KC
-767 program is pure pork and should be killed.
Without the KC
-767, the civil 767 program's future is iffy since the backlog of open orders is drying up.
This opens up another can of worms that should be another thread - How much longer is Boeing going to be a viable competitor in the commercial airliner market? With backlogs for 717s, 747s, 767s, and 777s dwindling, and Boeing's core market (US major airlines) on "financial IR
", will they eventually retreat to the guaranteed profits of military aerospace? It seems that Boeing management's recent decisions are more aimed at pleasing Wall Street than advancing the state-of-the-art of commercial aviation.