So - at last - we have our answer, folks. Germany is sending 14 modern battle tanks to Ukraine and has formed a partnership with other European countries to provide enough tanks for the Ukrainians to build two battalions (roughly 90 tanks). The word “historic” is overused in politics, but it seems appropriate today. A year ago Germany was the subject of international ridicule for offering to supply Kyiv with helmets. Today, it is coordinating delivery and training on the most advanced tanks its industry has ever built.
Interesting insight, and at least as someone who wasn't alive and knows very little about the cold war. The strategy of keeping the US with vested interests and as an active member of the cooperation with the war effort it's a pretty smart move. I hadn't seen it in that way. (Also I had no idea Germany was the only Big EU Power without their own nuclear arsenal.
good take, very different from the rest of the media, shared it a few times
I greatly appreciate this perspective. I also believe that it is good that Mr Biden was pushed to provided something significant to the tactical battle. I am not sure that tanks were the best idea though and I will explain why.
Right now there are multiple countries that will provide three different tank systems (and perhaps more different versions of those systems A4, A5, A6, A7 ?) and those different types are concerning. The British Challenger (2?) is a fine tank firing a L30 120mm rifled tank gun. They are sending 14, enough for a company... to what purpose? An independent force deployed in a sector other than the Abrams and Leopards? The German Leopard 2 (A?) another fine tank armed with Rheinmetall's superb 120mm smoothbore gun as is the US M-1A (2?) Abrams and with the same gun they use the same ammunition.
What they do not share is maintenance parts and procedures, which the mechanics have to learn. They also have to have specific tools and test equipment to do this work. This is important if these Tanks are going to stay in the fight for more than a week ! Multiple systems just makes that harder.
Fuel doesn't have to be an issue, the M-1's engine is not a "jet engine" as I have heard broadcasters say today. It is a multi fuel turbine engine that will run on diesel or gasoline, but how well it will run on them...? I am sure those tests were done, and perhaps the Ukrainians can ask. I have always assumed the US Army used JP 8 or 4 because it enhanced performance as well as "simplifies supplying fuel".
Now 90 Leopards is really a Brigade set, when combined with Infantry. 40 Abrams equals one pure battalion for a Break-thru, or two weaker Battalions. Part of a second Brigade?
However they are used, hopefully sooner rather than later. I wish their crews God-speed. Slava Ukraini !
Regarding Nuclear Weapons. It is my belief that the adage of keeping friends close and enemies closer should be followed. The US umbrella is needed and hopefully has been extended over Ukraine. Still, Germany is not weaponless. There is a German base called Büchel and experts have said that there are weapons. Do the German crews have the PAL codes, could they over-ride them? How sure can MR Lilliputin be? It is best if he is not sure. Every time he threatens a country or NATO and sees the threat as successful, the more he will threaten, that is the nature of bullies. The only way to change that is to create doubt in their mind or actually fight them, head to head. So far I do not see the west as being successful in causing doubt. Certainly more successful than Mr Chamberlain or Stalin in 1939, but then that was a total failure, wasn't it?
“ The idea is that the US should be kept tied in so that it keeps its promise of protection - including nuclear protection - to Germany and Europe.”
So this means Germany and the EU are too weak to have a say on the US’ hegemonic powers, so they bow their heads like lackeys and go along with the US’ proxy war in spite of their initial logical objections. This will, in the end, further cement the US’ place as the number one hegemon, the number Corleone of the world, further weakening Germany and Europe’s self-determination. Next, as we all know, is China. The aggressive campaign against China reminds me a of the decades long campaign that was orchestrated against Iraq by the US and Britain to whet the appetite of casual observers once an invasion takes place. For those born after the horrible invasion, which was based on lies, there’s valuable academic work on the latter. Read for instance: Deception and Britain’s road to war in Iraq, 2014. The US has neutralized it’s latino neighbors a very long time ago, forcing regime changes and economic collapse. They ruined the middle east and neutralized the defiant Arabs. They are now waging a war in Yemen through Saudi Arabia. Now it’s Russia and then China. Ask yourselves, after China, who will be left to conquer and squeeze out of resources? Who will they pull down just for being economically competitive? Read some history.
Just my two cents,
A Christian Arab woman from the Middle East
Germany: Suicide by US.
Germany was more concerned about weakening Rhrinmetall’s business franchise than anything else. This war is about business and all chatter about freedom and democracy a farce