Over the last few days, France has up in arms with Australia after a submarine supply contract was suddenly cancelled and offered to the US instead
 This new US-UK-Australia agreement, scuppers a 2016 deal that Australia sealed with France to acquire 12 diesel-powered subs from shipbuilder Naval Group.
 French foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, said his nation, whose friendship with the US dates to the Revolutionary War, felt stabbed in the back. French officials then promptly canceled a gala in Washington and Baltimore this week to celebrate close Franco-American ties
 Abandoning this deal is a personal blow for French president Emmanuel Macron, who hosted Australian prime minister Scott Morrison at the Elysee Palace in June and vaunted their friendship at the Group of Seven meeting in the UK
 Australia’s finance minister Simon Birmingham said around A$2.4bn ($1.75bn) was committed to date on the French programme
 It is no surprise that the French are angry. They are losing out on a huge supply deal that will create jobs too
 Basically, Australia has decided to up its military presence in the South Pacific and needs the technology, so is prepared to spend big
 Australia wants to avoid the ridicule it suffered during World War Two when its navy was described as “The Scrap Iron Flotilla” by the Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels. Australia has been shamed into upgrading its military hardware after its World War Two flotilla of five destroyers was nothing but discarded World War One ships used by the British Navy, which they had no more use for and gave away for free
 I just hope that one day Nigerians start to have a little shame as this “Scrap Iron Flotilla” mentality is present in all areas of our national life. Start from power generation, the state of our roads, our security architecture, etc. How can a nation of 200m still be importing its military hardware for heaven’s sake? We shamelessly import basic consumer goods with no plans to produce them ourselves
 With the Taliban assuming power in Afghanistan, several countries are going to be looking to upgrade the military hardware to safeguard them against any possible attack. Were Nigeria a forward-thinking nation, we would be on standby to honour such supply contracts. We should be the first point of call for any African nation that wants to buy battle tanks, armoured personnel carriers, assault rifles, multi-purpose machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades, anti-aircraft guns, anti-tank guns, etc. Food for thought!