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Pentagon Buying 260 Javelin Anti-Tank Missiles From Lockheed-Raytheon JV

The Department of Defense issued 12 new contracts Friday, worth a combined $521.1 million. At just $67.7 million, the one won by Javelin Joint Venture wasn't the biggest ... but it just might be the most interesting.

On Friday, the Javelin Joint Venture between Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT  ) and Raytheon (NYSE: RTN  ) won its second partial-foreign military sales contract in the past four months. The last such contract, issued in May and valued at $53.4 million, had the LockMart/Raytheon joint venture supplying an unspecified number of Javelin Block I Tactical Missile Rounds to the U.S. Army and Marine Corps, and also to the militaries of Jordan and Indonesia. Friday's contract is both larger, and more specific.

A "Javelin" is bigger than it sounds. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Twenty-seven percent bigger than the May contract, Friday's award specifies that it aims to procure 260 Javelin rounds for the U.S. Navy -- and more likely for the Marine Corps -- as well as for the militaries of Jordan and Indonesia (again), and also for Oman. The contract also procures "command launch unit" retrofits for the missile's launchers. It implies a purchase price of approximately $260,000 per each missile round. 

The FGM-148 Javelin is a man-portable, heat-seeking "fire and forget" light anti-tank weapon, meaning that a soldier or Marine who has fired it at a target does not need to remain "locked on" to the target, but can maneuver after firing to avoid counterfire from the enemy. The missile homes in on its target's heat signature independently.

It should not be confused with the British missile of the same name, which is used as a man-portable surface-to-air missile -- although the U.S. Javelin can also be used to target low-flying helicopters.

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  • Report this Comment On September 07, 2013, at 10:28 AM, KUBLOTNIK wrote:

    260k/round. am i the only one that thinks this is more than insanity. ???? Ike said it in the late 50s. the cost for all this war materiel is getting to be way out of bounds. 260k to kill one tank or chopper? this will bankrupt the country if we ever have to use many of them.and selling them to gov. across the world.?one of these days the weapons we have distributed all over the world WILL come back to haunt us.

  • Report this Comment On September 07, 2013, at 11:30 AM, FactChecker2 wrote:

    @KUBLOTNIK, An M1A1 tank cost over $8M and an Apache helicopter cost over $18M. So these are probably a cost-effective way to defend against enemy tanks and attack helicopters. Also, foreign governments buy these.

  • Report this Comment On September 07, 2013, at 1:15 PM, Rootate wrote:

    The purchase of these Javelins is a " cost cutting " measure if you can believe it ? Sequestration and all that it involves requires the military to purchase judiciously that which they need to get their jobs done .Did you know that the US coast guard buys their helicopters from Aerospatiale ,a French co, and that we the American taxpayer ,pay, for the 6 week paid vacations and 32 hr work week enjoyed in France as a result of them not buying American ?

  • Report this Comment On September 07, 2013, at 1:33 PM, RyanMChapman wrote:

    thank you so much for those missiles. money is paper. a missile will guard your lives.

  • Report this Comment On September 07, 2013, at 4:28 PM, bryson5396 wrote:

    Damn only 260 Javelins for 67.7 million. My unit in the Marine Corps shot off probably 1000 during my 4 year enlistment just for practice. I remember a range where 40 where shot of in a few hours. Even in Iraq we just wasted them on insurgents driving old pickup trucks or mud huts or dilapidated houses with a guy firing an AK47 out of. When we wanted to take out a tank or armor during the invasion we used TOW missiles.

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