National Security Experts


Richard Aboulafia

Biography provided by participant

Richard Aboulafia is Vice President of Analysis at Teal Group Corporation. He manages consulting projects in the commercial and military aircraft field and analyzes broader defense and aerospace trends. He has advised numerous companies, including most prime and many second- and third-tier contractors in the US, Europe and Asia. He also writes and edits Teal Group's World Military and Civil Aircraft Briefing, a forecasting tool covering over 135 aircraft programs and markets. Aboulafia writes publicly about aviation and defense, with numerous articles in Aviation Week and Space Technology, the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Military Technology, Avmark Aviation Economist, and Jane's Intelligence Review. He has a regular column in AIAA's Aerospace America. Frequently cited as an aviation industry authority by trade and news publications, Richard has also appeared on numerous television news and radio programs including ABC, BBC, Bloomberg, CBS, CNN, NBC, NPR and PBS. He has spoken at numerous conferences, including ATRIF, NAFA, NARA, Network for Aerospace Management in Europe (NAME), and Speednews. He presents a yearly lecture to the National Defense University/Industrial College of the Armed Forces and has served as an expert witness in aerospace markets. Before he joined Teal Group in 1990, Aboulafia analyzed the jet engine market at Jane's Information Group, served as an aerospace industry consultant for an international trade advisory company and supported research projects at the Brookings Institution. He has a Masters degree in War Studies from King's College, University of London and a Bachelors degree from George Washington University. He lives in Washington, DC with his wife, Casey.

Recent Responses

August 8, 2011 12:26 PM

I forecast aircraft markets for a living. If there's one accepted guideline I've followed for the past 25 years, it's that Republicans are strong on defense, and that's good for military aircraft procurement. But that's changed radically. The Obama defense budgets have been as high, and often higher, than the George W. Bush budgets. Meanwhile, much of the Tea Party crowd argues that spending cuts are necessary. Some of them think defense spending should be protected from this (although they won't say how much), but many don't. You've got a real schism between defense hawks and budget hawks. Traditional Republicans like John McCain are quite critical of the latter group's attitudes towards defense, but the recent debt ceiling compromise makes it clear that the budget hawks have a lot of leverage. The overall impression is that the Tea Party tail is starting to wag the Republican party dog. It's going to take a while for the new reality to sink in. I meet people in the defense industry who loathe Obama for being weak on defense, and t

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