Dubai Air Show to Conclude

The five-day Dubai Airshow will conclude today. The bi-annual event is an arena where the commercial and military aircrafts of

Dubai Airshow

Photo: Jon Gambrell/AP

The five-day Dubai Airshow will conclude today.

The bi-annual event is an arena where the commercial and military aircrafts of various countries including Russia and the US are exhibited to a global audience.

This year’s occasion is historic as state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries attended the event for the first time since normalizing its relations with the UAE. In addition to sending a positive message to Israel, the UAE hopes that this event will be a useful platform to further pursue its policy of increased militarization.

While the UAE will likely increase its defense spending budget during the short- to medium-term, it will also determine who its foreign defense supply partners are prior to signing arms deals. In this framework, the UAE’s desire to purchase the Russian fifth-generation Su-75 “Checkmate” aircraft will likely meet the heavy disapproval from the US. Therefore, more attention may be directed towards the American F-35 stealth jets despite various technical issues concerning the plane’s software.

During the long-term, the UAE will continue to favor purchasing American military equipment, continuing to move away from Russia’s sphere of influence and further increasing its strategic partnership with Washington in matters concerning the Middle East.

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