The Defense Security Cooperation Agency notified Congress (link opens a PDF) Monday of plans to sell the government of Iraq 19 Mobile Troposcatter Radio Systems and 10 Mobile Microwave Radio Systems, plus necessary spare parts, support equipment, publications, and technical data, and to provide training on the use thereof.
If Congress approves the sale -- or fails to refuse it within 15 days of notification, which has the same effect -- then this sale will produce some $339 million in incremental revenues for principal contractor Raytheon (NYSE:RTN).
Raytheon has been building troposcatter radio systems for more than 35 years. Before the advent of widely available satellite communications links, sending radio waves through the troposphere was considered the only practical means of beaming megabit-size data packets over the horizon.
Explaining the need for this sale, DSCA explained to Congress that this equipment "will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by improving the Iraqi military's situational awareness and enhancing command and control from its National Military Headquarters to major subordinate commands ... [providing] critical redundancy for national level command and control."
DSCA assured Congress that "this proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region," nor will it adversely "impact on U.S. defense readiness."