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Galileo - German CES Calls It A ''Stupid Idea'


Article by: Darren Griffin
Date: 17 Jan 2011

pocketgpsworld.comA leaked WikiLeaks cable quotes the head of German firm HB Technology calling the EU Galileo project as "a stupid idea".

The leaked diplomatic cable was published by Norwegian newspaper 'Aftenposten'. In the cable, Berry Smutny, OHB CEO is alleged to have told US diplomats that he thought the project was 'a waste of EU tax payers money championed by French interests.'. He is furthr quoted in the cable saying "I think Galileo is a stupid idea that primarily serves French interests".

The comments relate to US manipulation of GPS signals during the Kosovo conflict. This deeply concerned France who wanted an EU controlled GPS network to ensure their missile guidance systems were not reliant on the US DoD operated Navstar service.

OHB Technology leads the consortium that won the contract to build and test 14 satellites for the Galileo navigation network, a contract worth a staggering 566 million euros.

The alleged comments were made in 2009 ahead of the news that OHB had won the contract in January 2010. OHB were described as the underdog during the selection process with Astrium Satellites widely tipped to be the winners.

OHB have issued a written statement denying that Mr Smutny made the statements described in the US diplomatic cable.

Comments
Posted by BigPerk on Mon Jan 17, 2011 11:13 am Reply with quote

I guess the US still doesn't like the idea of any other country not being dependent on them - gets in the way of running the world the way it ought to be run I suppose. That's presumably why, when I buy a US electronic product, I have to promise not to pass it on to countries they don't approve of. Twisted Evil

Mind you, if France does think that an EU satellite system would be safe from interference in times of US diplomatic/military stress, they could be accused of being a little naive. Surely they don't think they have a Special Relationship do they Rolling Eyes ?


David
(Navigon 70 Live, Nuvi 360)

 
Posted by Darren on Mon Jan 17, 2011 12:39 pm Reply with quote

Whilst I am generally in awe of the gross waste and fraud that is ever present in EU projects, I am in favour of Galileo.

It's not just that, to be wholly reliant on a US controlled, DoD operated system is foolhardy. There are real world improvements that can be gained from a wholly new, modern system that is not encumbered by the legacy constraints that Navstar is lumbered with.

Yes it is expensive, but not that expensive when you realise that the entire cost of Galileo is a fraction of the costs wasted by the EU on farcical projects such as investments targeted at Austrian hill farmers to help them feel more connected to their lands or to build a new port in the Canaries, a port that has never seen commercial use because of the strong currents there!

When realised, Galileo will bring about a navigation service more accurate than Navstar and a great many benefits. The US don't like that because they want us all to rely on their network.


Darren Griffin - Editor

 
Posted by BigPerk on Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:40 pm Reply with quote

And there was talk IIRC that part of the Galileo funding was possibly to be coming from a surplus ( Shocked ) in the EU's agriculture (CAP) budget. If this is so then ideally I think I'd rather the UK got some of 'our' money back. But as that just won't happen, it would be FAR better at least to have it spent on Galileo than propping up more of those obsolete 'ways of life' practices, and the surplus lakes & mountains subsidies.


David
(Navigon 70 Live, Nuvi 360)

 
Posted by MikeB on Mon Jan 17, 2011 3:15 pm Reply with quote

BigPerk Wrote:
... Surely they don't think they have a Special Relationship do they Rolling Eyes ?

Emm Have you not been keeping up with the news recently? Obama said last week that France was the biggest ally of the US... I am not entirely sure what that statement was based on.


Mike Barrett
Editor, PocketGPSWorld.com

 
Posted by MaFt on Mon Jan 17, 2011 4:02 pm Reply with quote

MikeB Wrote:
BigPerk Wrote:
... Surely they don't think they have a Special Relationship do they Rolling Eyes ?

Emm Have you not been keeping up with the news recently? Obama said last week that France was the biggest ally of the US... I am not entirely sure what that statement was based on.


square miles?! Laughing Out Loud


 
Posted by Guivre46 on Tue Jan 18, 2011 10:22 am Reply with quote

Darren Wrote:
A leaked WikiLeaks cable quotes the head of German firm HB Technology calling the EU Galileo project as "a stupid idea".


OK, he's gone: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-12212525


Mike R [aka Wyvern46]
Go 530T - unsupported
Go550 Live [not renewed]
Kia In-dash Tomtom

 
Posted by Darren on Tue Jan 18, 2011 11:27 am Reply with quote

How does revoking his appointment whilst as the same time denying the comments disprove them??

Quote:
A statement from OHB-System on Monday said its supervisory board had "passed a unanimous resolution to revoke Mr Smutny's appointment", adding that it "disapproves these conversations and the quotes attributed to Mr Smutny".

Surely if he didn't say them then he should have remained, bizarre move.


Darren Griffin - Editor

 
Posted by M8TJT on Tue Jan 18, 2011 2:11 pm Reply with quote

MaFt Wrote:
[quare miles?! Laughing Out Loud
As e talking France, shouldn't it be square kilometers or hectares Shocked


 
Posted by MikeB on Tue Jan 18, 2011 2:20 pm Reply with quote

M8TJT Wrote:
MaFt Wrote:
[quare miles?! Laughing Out Loud
As e talking France, shouldn't it be square kilometers or hectares Shocked
He is an American they use proper English measurements so he would not have any idea what a Kilometre is... Razz


Mike Barrett
Editor, PocketGPSWorld.com

 
Posted by M8TJT on Tue Jan 18, 2011 2:30 pm Reply with quote

MikeB Wrote:
He is an American they use proper English measurements so he would not have any idea what a Kilometre is... Razz
Although I agree in principle that they use sensible units, I'd much rather have an English gallon or quart than an American one Very Happy


 
Posted by Guivre46 on Tue Jan 18, 2011 2:54 pm Reply with quote

Darren Wrote:
How does revoking his appointment whilst as the same time denying the comments disprove them??
Quote:
A statement from OHB-System on Monday said its supervisory board had "passed a unanimous resolution to revoke Mr Smutny's appointment", adding that it "disapproves these conversations and the quotes attributed to Mr Smutny".

Surely if he didn't say them then he should have remained, bizarre move.


"Make smoke and zigzag" Question


Mike R [aka Wyvern46]
Go 530T - unsupported
Go550 Live [not renewed]
Kia In-dash Tomtom

 
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