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Counterpoint: Prior to Boeing announcing its protest (see above) in the KC-X contest, Northrop Grumman issued an updated document to set the facts straight from its perspective on its winning tanker platform, its industry team and work share in the United States. The company reiterated that it is the prime contractor for the KC-30 aircraft, which is now designated the KC-45A. EADS North America, which will provide the Airbus A330 airframes for the KC-45A, is only one of several subcontractors, as is engine maker General Electric. The KC-45A supplier base in the US will include 230 companies in 49 states. Tanker work will support “more than 25,000 direct and indirect jobs in the United States,” actually a conservative estimate, the company said. When both direct and indirect activities are factored, the KC-45A jobs will number “approximately 48,000” nationwide. Assembly and militarization of the tanker in Mobile, Ala., will create 1,500 new jobs. And the program does not transfer any jobs from the US to France or any other foreign country. In related news, on Monday Northrop received its debrief from the Air Force on how the KC-30 scored in the KC-X source-selection evaluation. “According to the Air Force, Northrop Grumman's KC-45A was selected because it is more advantageous to the government in the key areas of mission capability, past performance, cost/price, and integrated fleet aerial refueling assessment,” said Paul Meyer, Northrop’s VP of Air Mobility Systems and KC-45A program manager. “Our tanker clearly provides the warfighter with the best capability and at the best value to the American taxpayer.”