Let’s be sure to think about this

Noticed this in a Strategy Page post about the new Iraqi 9th Mechanized Division:

There’s plenty of surplus Russian armor in Eastern Europe, which the current owners are planning on selling or scrapping. Since there are few customers for this obsolete equipment, you can earn a few brownie points with the U.S. by donating it to Iraq. The United States has been pushing this approach, even offering to pay the transport costs in some cases. The Iraqis, however, already have their eye on the future, and want more modern equipment. The United States has already said that it would leave a lot of military equipment behind when American units are withdrawn permanently, and the Iraqis are hoping some of this gear will include used M-1 tanks and M-2 infantry vehicles. Failing that, Russia is ready to sell Iraqi its new T-90 tanks. Just like the old days. [emphasis mine]

I haven’t heard that we’d said we’d be leaving “a lot of military equipment behind”, though I don’t doubt it at all. However, I guess I’d be surprised to see M-1s and M-2s made part of the package. There’s just too many potential negatives. Far better to let others score points with us by donating surplus equipment or score contracts by selling Russian-made (like Poland, who has sold the Iraqis many of the AK-47s used to arm the military and police forces). Iraq doesn’t need top-notch armor to fight insurgents and deter potential invaders in the first place, and the fact that much of the Iraqi army is already running Russian equipment and that what experience Iraqi soldiers have is with Russian equipment says “let them use Russian equipment”.


  1. I notice they said ‘used M-1 tanks.’ That could mean we give them some of our obsolete original M-1’s (not the M1A1 or M1A2) which are sitting around National Guard depots waiting to be upgraded or scrapped. The original M-1 is still good tank but hardly state of the art and we don’t really have a use for them.

  2. Bram: Yeah, and you can get rid of the M1A1s, which are better than the M1s but not as good as the M1A2s (no commander’s periscope on the A1?!?!) by selling them off to suckers like the Australian government. The only reason I can think of our country buying M1A1s is if we’re going to go gallavanting around foreign countries helping the USA out. Which had better make you guys really grateful. Because that’s my tax money going into buying your old junk :) Let’s face it, if someone successfully gets enough troop and cargo ships to our shores despite our Navy and Air Force and manages to offload in enough strength to make it a couple of thousand miles to the nearest major city without getting picked off along the way by aircraft or infantry ambushes, we’re not going to be able to stop them with a few used tanks.

  3. Nicholas Those junk M1A1’s are upgraded and even our 91′ version run domination over any even current models out thier. Australia is a cherished ally that you can believe if anyone ever does try to make a landing on your shores we will either be blocking that from happening or on full steam getting thier to help send em back were they came from and some. Military weapons are one of those things that make no sense and seem to be a waste until you need them and then all of the sudden that top notch high dollar tank or airplane is literally worth its wieght in blood. Priceless