Boeing (BA) has received a blow in its bid to win an 8.3T won ($7.64B) tender to supply South Korea with new fighter jets after 15 former air chiefs signed a petition opposing the selection of the company's F-15 Silent Eagle due to concerns over its capabilities.
The "F-15 SE is still a paper airplane under development based on 1970's models," the petition reportedly says, raising doubts about its effectiveness.
Boeing looks to be the only candidate after its proposal met South Korea's budgetary requirements, while those of Lockheed Martin (LMT) and the Eurofighter didn't.
"Like the United States and Japan, we need (Lockheed's) F-35s as fifth-generation aircraft," says Kim Hong-rae, who was air force chief of staff from 1994-95. "We can't just choose minicars over sedans because they are cheap."