General Dynamics Halts Its Maintenance Services For Iraqi M1A1 Abrams Tanks – Report

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General Dynamics Halts Its Maintenance Services For Iraqi M1A1 Abrams Tanks – Report

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On January 28, an unnamed Iraqi official revealed to the Iraqi news outlet al-Ghad Press that the manufacturer of M1 Abrams battle tanks, General Dynamics had halted its maintenance services for the Iraqi Army. According to the source, the company took the decision because some of Iraqi Army M1A1 Abrams battle tanks were operated by irregular Iraqi Shiite forces.

“The American tank company [General Dynamics] withdrew from its position at Muthanna airport in Baghdad, after considering that Iraq is in violation of the contract with it, which states that the Iraqi army is the only side that’s authorized to use the Abrams,” the source told al-Ghad Press.

The Muthanna airport in Baghdad hosts a big maintenance facility that serves over 100 M1A1 Abrams battle  tanks of the Iraqi Army. However, the Iraqi official said that all US experts left the facility in the end of 2017 and have not returned so far.

Moreover, the source revealed that the US company asked the Iraqi government to recover two M1A1 Abrams battle tanks from irregular Iraqi Shiite militias in 2017. While the Iraqi Army managed to get one tank back from an unnamed Shiite force during the battles against ISIS in Anbar province, the second one is yet to be recovered.

The US company had also threatened to fully break its contract with the Iraqi Army in case the second tank “was cloned by a regional state linked to the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Units (PMU),” according to the source.

The M1A1 Abrams tank is powered by a turbine engine that requires extensive care and constant complex maintenance. This mean that all Iraqi M1A1 Abrams battle tanks, that’s considered the core of the Iraqi armored force, could face maintenance problems if General Dynamics broke the contract.

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  • John Mason

    Send them back or blow them up.

  • Melusi Gamede

    Get Russia to provide diesel engines………………….problem solved

    • John Whitehot

      it can’t be done, it would involve the design and production of a new engine.

      The gas turbine powerpack has also a fuel consumption similar to the Saturn-V rocket.

    • Barba_Papa

      Give it a year or two and maybe Iran will reveal an Abrams clone? Just like they did with the Humvee?

      • John Whitehot

        I doubt Iran’s got any intention to put in service an Abrams clone. The Zulfiqar MBTs they developed seems to be halfway between the M-60 and the T-72.

    • as

      Changing their engine into completely different types is sort of overhauling the whole tank. But i agree those Abrams really nothing that’s specified to do extensive job in the desert not to mention the kind of deployment it got into one of these days. We looked at T90 and T72 used by Syrian, how it’s colored completely by mud yet it still going around. I doubt Abrams can keep up with them.
      I already said in the past that those Abrams is a scams. They’re too complex not to mention unreliable in deserts condition. Their maintenance need a higher industrial facility than what’s available for the Iraqi so their spare parts would completely relying on foreign company.

      I’d say sell them out or retire them gradually. Iraq should get Diesel engined Tanks.

    • Pommy Pie

      Reconfiguring a V12 diesel wouldn’t be as challenging as it seems , the main issue for the Iraqis imo would be coupling a transmission for such a heavy monster

  • Barba_Papa

    Another example why it is a bad thing to buy American equipment. You buy American kit, you invite American meddling with how you can use it. Which is probably why the US forced Iraq to buy these tanks from them. France used to be the best alternative if you wanted to use Western gear without Western meddling, as the French had no morals in regards to their customers. Saudi Arabia, Apartheid era South Africa, African and South American dictators, they sold to everyone willing to pay. I reckon this is no longer the case, with France now trying to topple the UK as America’s favorite sidekick. De Gaulle is spinning in his grave like crazy.

    Probably best to buy Russian gear nowadays. No internal meddling, good kit, and decent price. And if that’s not decent enough for you you could always buy the Chinese knockoffs.

  • King_GeorgXIII

    just get a tank like the t-90 or even chineese tanks they wont let you down!

    • Don Machiavelli

      True that. As if Abrams was superiour. Remember Merkavas? Hehe

    • TiredOfBsToo

      You know how technology equipment, like smart phones, computers etc. can be ‘traded up’ for purchasing the next generation equipment? How about Russian companies offering the Iraqis a deal on trading up their M1’s for some better equipment at reasonable prices.

      • King_GeorgXIII

        The already have send t 90 to iraq! Now they will sent more! The USaAloses another costumer! Turkey is next!

      • World_Eye

        Why should Russia goes now in arms deals with Iraq, when Iraq is it’s US puppet, all US equipment same style, government run by Americans. All made by Americans for Iraqis

        • TiredOfBsToo

          Why were the Kurds kept from establishing their own state in Iraq? Why did the Iraqis work with the Syrians to keep their joint border from being occupied by US backed terrorists?

  • Rafik Chauhan

    GIVE THAT TANK TO IRAN AND THEY WILL SHOW U HOW TO MAINTAIN THOSE TANK . DONT NEED THIS US COMPANY TO MAINTAIN. US IS BACK STABBER . THEY WILL PROVIDE WEOPEONS AND LATTER BLAKMAIL U IF YOU DONT LISTEN OR FOLLOW THEM

    • Maisara Mualil

      You’re absolutely right…

  • Bruce MacKinnon

    Perhaps the second tank is scrap metal somewhere. They do seem more vulnerable than in the “brochure” Like so many from west these days, too complex, too difficult and expensive to maintain, too thirsty, way too expensive to buy, unsuited to long drawn out conflict with opponents possessing lots of modern and very portable relatively very cheap anti tank weaponry. On top of all that, still manually loaded with slow firing rate.

  • MikeH

    I had read elsewhere the PMUs had been running the tanks for years. Why now the change of heart?

    • as

      Not only PMU in this case. The government under current PM are blackmailed.

  • François

    ….Well well well, the solution could be found in black market..
    Just dare to use “dark net” services & supplies

  • Turbofan

    “The M1A1 Abrams tank is powered by a turbine engine that “””requires extensive care and constant complex maintenance.””” ”
    So where did ISIS get the expertise to maintain these tanks all these years??

  • Don Machiavelli

    That’s why Iraq will turn to Russia and elsewhere. The same reason behind Erdogan purchasing Russian equipment. MIC lost connection with reality. They still believe that the Earth is American asset and that America is the strongest. These are not 1990s nor 2000s we have other players now too.

    • John Whitehot

      Turkey purchased Russian equipment well before Erdogan came to power – for example they bought armored personnel carriers and MANPADs during the early 2000s.

      • Don Machiavelli

        Thanks for info.

  • chris chuba

    And this is how the U.S. plays in the Information War.
    Step 1. pressure the Iraqi govt to disarm the Shiite militias whom they have no quarrel.
    Step 2. if they comply (in in this case resist and then later comply) use this as evidence that the Shiite militias are bad actors because why the Iraqis are trying to counter Iranian influence.

  • hvaiallverden

    Yeah, give them to Iran, let them eh…… “reverse” them, and use the battle that is right now to learn, I guess they have gas turbine engines, witch is basically an fuel sucking black hole, and thats it, useless in the real world over time, costly, another draw back, and if I know Wankee shit witch they make, the electronics and the build quality is somewhere around an Nightmare on Elm street scenario, utter crap.

    The platform it self is maybe usable, but the rest can be changed, thats an minor problem, in fact.
    Again, I recommend the Iraqis to think, what works, what not, missile tec is advancing, more and more portable systems available, where small units can have an firepower unprecedented, and should incl MANPads in various forms, tanks are more like Howitzers, an loose cannon and sucks manpower to guard, in this drone times, and its going to be more packed up there in the future, dont forget that, and again, by things that actually works and I know you have people in your own country to do that, feed them with tasks and see what happens, Iraqis, you have it all.

    peace

  • Real Anti-Racist Action

    I hope it made it safely to the Monotheist Republic. I am sure Russian or Chinese or Iranians can maintain them now.
    Also they can be cloned, and the engine can be replaced with a Russian built engine.
    It’s future clone can even easily be improved and a few pounds shed.

    • as

      Nothing sort of that is possible. If they changed the engine they’d need to clone it. Other than that it’s almost total refitting that they better just buy new tanks with the funds needed for it.
      These Abrams tanks designed to burden the Iraqi army without being any better than their older inventory.
      Just like F35. Well ironically I’d say.

  • John

    Iraq is already negotiating, it seems, with Russia for a tank purchase anyway.

    My country used to be a place where we made our own stuff. It was quality, inexpensive and gave support to our people. That was all shipped overseas and what we sell now is death; weapons weapons, weapons. It is a disgrace. I wish well to all.

  • You can call me Al

    I find the General Dynamics and in general the US attitude, so childish and pathetic. I honestly do not know how they think they cab get away with it.

    • as

      Well they’re the only ‘woman’ in the town so they have the right to have the attitude.

  • Mortal

    That’s what I call a hit below the belt. Maybe it is time to invest in russian tanks? Simpler and effective, if not directly better in most aspects from western tanks?

  • VGA

    Fake news, nothing of this sort happened.

  • Bob

    The US is delusional over Iraq. The majority population are Shia – 60%. Saddam Hussein repressed the Shia majority with Sunni dominance of higher official posts for decades. Having toppled Hussein themselves the US is now looking to maintain that repression of the Shia majority – it was patently obvious that post-Hussein an unshackled Shia majority in Iraq were going to look for closer relations with the religious and culturally affiliated neighboring Shia republic of Iran. The US seeks to impose control over that process – but they really only have two negative based options to achieve this, a US controlled and majority repressive Iraqi government or a sectarian driven partition of the country.