US Congress members ask to urgently deliver M1A2 tanks to Poland as Russia tensions rise
According to information released by the U.S. House Armed Services Committee on January 24, 2022, U.S. Representatives Mike Rogers, Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee, Mike Turner, Ranking Member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and Lisa McClain are urging U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin to expedite the Congressional Notification, Foreign Military Sale, and transfer of M1A2 Abrams SEP V3 main battle tanks to Poland.
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Polish soldiers attend Idaho National Guard M1 Abrams tank training in October and November to observe best practices as Polish Land Forces seek to develop their own training capability. (Picture source U.S. DoD)
The U.S. members of Congress request to expedite urgently the Congressional Notification, Foreign Military Sale, and transfer of M1A2 SEP V3 Abrams Main Battle Tanks (MBTs) to Poland due to the situation in Ukraine and threats of invasion from Russia.
Citing members of the U.S. Congress, further, helping to equip Poland with the M1A2 tank would serve to displace Soviet-era equipment in the Polish force structure, and thus enhance interoperability with U.S. and NATO forces, while simultaneously strengthening the U.S. industrial base.
In July 2021, the Polish Minister of National Defence Mariusz Błaszczak has announced a plan to acquire M1A2 Abrams System Enhancement Program version 3 (SEPv3), the latest configuration of the US main battle tank (MBT), to equip four armored battalions of the Polish army.
Previously, Army Recognition has reported that Poland has requested the United States the purchase of 250 M1A2 SEPv3 Abrams MBTs as well as armored recovery vehicles, command vehicles, mobile bridge systems, and unspecified medical evacuation vehicles.
The M1A2 SEPV V3 also called M1A2C is a modernized version of the M1A2 SEPV v2 main battle tank that benefits from a number of upgrades in the areas of survivability, maintainability, full efficiency and network capability. The main armament of M1A2 SEP V3 includes one 120 mm smoothbore M256 cannon.
With the acquisition of Leopard 2 and M1A2 Abrams MBTs, Poland will have more combat capabilities against modern MBT of Russia and will replace its old Soviet T-72 MBTs dating from the Cold War. Currently, the Polish army has a total of 142 Leopard 2A4 that will be upgraded to 2PL version 105 Leopard 2A5, 232 PT-91 Twardy, a Polish version of the Soviet-made T-72 and 127 T-72A/T-72M1, including 257 tanks in store.
Polish soldiers attended Idaho National Guard M1 Abrams tank training in October and November 2021 to observe best practices as Polish Land Forces seek to develop their own training capability. The Idaho Army National Guard’s 204th Regional Training Institute at Gowen Field specializes as an armor training schoolhouse, delivering curriculum to U.S. military armor students. During the visit, schoolhouse instructors and armor experts provided training and insight for Polish soldiers.
3rd Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division sends the first round downrange with the U.S. Army’s new M1A2 SEPV3 Abrams Main Battle Tank, Fort Hood, Texas. (Picture source U.S. DoD)