With European help, Iraq aims to stop buying tanks from the United States


January 13, 2018 – Fort Russ News – Paul Antonopoulos

BAGHDAD, Iraq – Because of budget constraints preventing the Iraqi military from ordering more US-made Abrams, there is now a project to upgrade T-55/Type 69 tanks to a more modern standard, greater protection and cheaper operating costs than the Abrams, Al-Sura News reported.

“The aim is to transform these (T-55/Type-69) tanks into capable modern tanks in this arena,” Commander of the ‘Al Abbas Fighting Division’ Maytham al-Zaidi stated.

He then also gave a short list of expectations to be met.

  1. Locally manufactured electronics and ballistic computer to enable firing on the move and hitting moving targets
  2. Locally manufactured armor as well as Reactive armor layer imported from European suppliers
  3. Day and Night thermal gunners sight as well as a 360 degree panoramic commanders sight. Import country not noted.
  4. Encrypted communications and anti-jamming suite imported from Europe.
  5. Remote-operated commanders machine gun, independent of the gunner.
  6. Separate compartment to hold ammunition, similar to the Abrams to protect crews from breaches.

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