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Originally posted by waynos
As you say, the Tornado is a far superior long range interceptor to the F-16 but as these aircraft are a stop gap until the introduction of the Typhoon with the AMI' then the F-16 with its agile dogfighting capability provides something more in keeping with what they are eventually going to get.
I think this is a side issue however and the real reason was simply that the F-16's were available more cheaply and are cheaper to operate. As Italy doesn't expect to be involved in a shooting war on its own territory any tiime soon this is always going to be the number one consideration.