First of all I need to get one thing very clear: I am NOT anti-American or anti-Boeing. My boss is from Detroit as is his boss, I am frequently in West Michigan on business. Some of my best friends are Americans. I am one of those Canadians who views the US as a next door neighbour and our best friend in the world.
That all being said, I am seeking to get a reasonable debate going about the role of international politics in the aircraft choices that carriers around the world make.
One could argue endlessly about which aircraft is superior e.g.. B777 v A340 or
A330 v 767 or others, regarding their respective economics, take-off performance etc. I would contend that each airline has specific utilisation patterns which make one aircraft or the other better for them as well as purchase price. I have read a lot of nonsense on a.net and other forums about things like the weak climb performance of one type over another etc. and the contention by some that certain aircraft types are nothing short of miraculous in their super-abilities. One particular B777 cheer-leader comes to mind!!!
Look at the world today. With all that is going on, the US is running low on friends. Yes, many countries are the declared allies of the US but the feeling on the ground in many of these countries is a dislike of US foreign policy, a feeling that the US is trying to ram it's lifestyle and value systems on them. I was born in Ireland and during a recent visit to Canada by some of my relatives I was taken aback by their vitriolic dislike of the US, President Bush and other Americana. I found myself defending our American friends in many debates. Now if this attitude is widespread, and I have reason to believe it is, what role does it play politically when decisions are made on aircraft procurement.
While one would expect that such things would be decided on economics and performance parameters, do you think that this anti-Americanism plays a significant role? If it does, what is the extent of it? I look at some countries where there is significant 'heartache' about US foreign policy such as Ireland and I see the National airline becoming an all-Airbus operator. Of course there is also Mr.O'Leary who apparently hates Airbus. He would not buy an Airbus under any circumstances (or so it seems to me) and does not think outside the Boeing Box. Is it politics more than economics or performance issues that
Consider the Islamic world, and the issues that exist ideologically between the Islamic world and the secular world. What influences does that bring to bear in the choices that airlines from those countries make? Anyway my intention is not to start a big fight like A v B, US v EU etc. but rather to understand what clinches the deal when all other things are equal. Politics or Performance?
Here goes nothing!!!!
I have no memory of this place.