Vehicles

Russia reacts predictably to tank news

Today’s announcements that Germany, Poland and the U.S. as well as other NATO members would be sending up to 88 main battle tanks to Ukraine yielded a predictable initial response from Russia. “This extremely dangerous decision takes the conflict to a new level of confrontation,” said its envoy in Germany, Sergei Nechayev, warning that it would lead to “the death of not only Russian soldiers, but also the civilian population.” He also said Ukraine’s allies are “not interested in a diplomatic solution.” [node:read-more:link]

German Leopards for Ukraine

After months of internal debate and under pressure from many allies which use its Leopard 2 main battle tanks, the German government agreed today to send an initial 14, paving the way for other countries, including Canada, to do likewise. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy thanked Chancellor Olaf Scholz for his “important and timely decisions” on the tanks and other weapons, saying they are a “green light for partners” to follow suit. [node:read-more:link]

U.S. commits Abrams MBTs to Ukraine

President Joe Biden announced today that the U.S. will send a battalion of 31 M1 Abrams main battle tanks to Ukraine. However, they are not expected to arrive for months as the Pentago addresses challenges in providing the equipment, fuel and training to operate the 70-ton vehicles which, unlike other diesel-powered MTBs, are powered by gas turbines. [node:read-more:link]

No Swedish tanks "on the plate"

A senior Swedish official said today that the government, which has 120 Leopard 2 main battle tanks, has not decided whether to give any to Ukraine. “We are, politically, open to support with all types of capabilities but tanks have not yet been on the plate,” the official said. “We have made a substantial contribution . . . and of course that gives challenges but also opportunities” for Swedish defence modernization. “We . . . cannot give away stuff without refilling our own equipment reserves” [node:read-more:link]

Rapid Ukrainian tank training expected

New tank training programs in Poland could get the Ukrainian army ready to operate Leopard 2 main battle tanks in as few as six weeks due to their experience thousands of Ukrainians have built up in combat with their own and captured Russian armour. That could position Ukraine for a spring counteroffensive against Russian invaders a year into their war. [node:read-more:link]

Leopard MBTs for Ukraine

Unnamed German government sources say their government, subject to parliamentary debate January 25, is prepared to send Leopard 2 main battle tanks to Ukraine. The expected ratification would effectively free Canada and other NATO allies to ship their Leopards as well to bolster the country’s defences. [node:read-more:link]

Ukraine needs “hundreds” of tanks

Andriy Yermak, chief of staff to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, said today that his country needs “several hundred” main battle tanks to mount an effective counteroffensive against Russia and reclaim Crimea. “Our goal is the borders of 1991 and punishing the enemy, who will pay for their crimes,” he said. [node:read-more:link]

Germany open to tank re-exports

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said January 22 that her government will not object if Poland decides to send Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. However, she said, Poland had not formally requested approval. “If we were asked, we would not stand in the way,” she said, acknowledging “how important these tanks are” to Ukraine. “This is why we are discussing this now with our partners.” [node:read-more:link]

Poland willing to ship tanks

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki reiterated today that his government is willing to ship Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine without authorization by Germany, which has legal power to veto re-exports. “We will ask for such permission, but this is an issue of secondary importance,” he said. [node:read-more:link]

Anand non-committal on tanks for Ukraine

Fresh from a meeting with her NATO counterparts in Germany last week, Defence Minister Anita Anand said in a January 22 broadcast that she had “no news to share” on whether Canada will send Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine as repeatedly requested by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Canada has 82 of the German tanks but has said it has said it needs permission from Germany to ship them to a third country. [node:read-more:link]

More Canadian vehicles for Ukraine

After meeting today in Kyiv with her Ukrainian counterpart, Defence Minister Anita Anand announced that Canada is sending 200 Roshel Senator emergency response vehicles to Ukraine. They are being purchased for $90 million from their Toronto-area manufacturer which had shipped eight to Ukraine last year. [node:read-more:link]

Canada sends armoured vehicles for Haiti

Canada delivered three more armoured vehicles to the Haiti National Police via military aircraft. The vehicles are for use against criminal gangs which have caused a humanitarian crisis. Canada supplied an initial batch of AVs last October. [node:read-more:link]

More armoured vehicles for Haiti

Canada’s UN envoy, Bob Rae, says the federal government will send more armoured vehicles to Haiti to help its national police deal with gang violence that has escalated over five years and effectively paralyzed the country. Canada shipped three Mine-Resistant, Ambush-Protected vehicles and three commercial-pattern AVs in October and details of the next batch evidently will await an in-country assessment by three Canadian experts. [node:read-more:link]

Finnish 8x8 selected by Japan

Japan plans to replace some of its more than 360 domestic Type 86 armoured personnel carriers, which entered service in 1996, with another 8x8, Finland’s Patria. Mitsubish and General Dynamics Land Systems originally also were short-listed but GDLS did not deliver a prototype and the Patria evidently scored best on cost and performance. [node:read-more:link]

Judge suspends Brazilian AV contract

A week after the Brazilian army announced a contract for 98 Italian 8x8 Centauro II armored vehicles to replace its 1970s fleet of domestically-built EE-9 Cascavel 6x6s, a judge suspended the contract today. He evidently agreed with a lawsuit’s argument that the procurement is not a priority as the government cuts budges for health and education services. [node:read-more:link]

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