US-supplied Abrams tanks didn’t change the situation – Zelensky

The limited number of Abrams tanks, sent over by the United States to Ukraine, have struggled to make a significant impact on the battlefield, according to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. In a meeting with African media representatives, which was subsequently shared on his official Facebook profile, Zelensky made this revelation. 

US-supplied Abrams tanks didn't change the situation - Zelensky
Video screenshot

During the conversation, Zelensky acknowledged the diversity of tanks at their disposal, ranging from the imported Leopard, Challenger, and Abrams to the readily available T-72. “The “Abrams is no exception. This is a high-quality tank. We don’t have many of them, to be honest with you. Abrams is the first example of such a tank,” Zelensky stated. 

Next, Zelensky shifted the focus to the battlefield performance of the Abrams, clarifying that it isn’t the quality of the tank that’s hindering its success, but rather the scarcity. “We’re keen on enhancing our relations with the US, and we look forward to receiving more shipments. However, at this juncture, it’s hard for me to assert that the Abrams tanks play a primary role on the battlefield due to their small numbers,” Zelensky clarified. 

Ukraine expects 31 Abrams tanks in May in Grafenwöhr, Germany
Photo credit: Twitter

Back in September, the US publicized the dispatch of the first shipment of Abrams tanks to Ukraine, fulfilling a commitment made earlier in the year.

Russia “unveiled” numbers

Since February 24, 2022, it’s been a rare occurrence for Moscow to reveal specific statistics as reported by the state news agency, TASS. 

Russia boosts the 152mm Krasnopol shell to engage moving targets - Msta howitzer
Photo credit: Russian MoD

The Russian Ministry of Defense has drawn attention to futile attempts by the Ukrainian army to advance since June 4th. The Minister of Defense for Russia, Sergei Shoigu, disclosed on October 30th, that these efforts have resulted in casualties exceeding 90,000 soldiers. Furthermore, the Ukrainian army has reportedly suffered the loss of close to 600 tanks and around 1.9 thousand various classes of armored vehicles. 

In a statement issued on October 15th, Russian President Vladimir Putin asserted that the Ukrainian armed forces’ counteroffensive had been entirely unsuccessful. Despite this, he noted that Kyiv was planning additional aggressive actions in select front sections.

Abrams in Ukraine

According to a recent announcement from the United States, all 31 Abrams tanks promised to Kyiv by the administration of President Joe Biden have arrived in Ukraine. 

Not only the tanks but also other machinery based on the Abrams chassis are now in Ukraine. This includes the M1150 Assault Breacher Vehicle [ABV], a US-made machine that strengthens Ukraine’s Armed Forces. This information comes directly from a speech by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. He shared this detail while giving thanks and praises to the military during the celebration of Missile Forces and Artillery Day as well as Engineer Forces Day. 

While there are no specific updates about when the M1150 ABV left the US, it is presumed to have been transported along with the Abrams tanks. These tanks touched down in Ukraine no later than the middle of October. 

Ukraine uses a very rare assault Abrams hybrid - the M1150 ABV
Photo credit: Twitter

The addition of this machinery makes Ukraine’s Armed Forces the second in the world, after the United States, to use this vehicle. It’s also worth mentioning that Australia received permission to purchase the machine in 2021, but the status of the contract’s further processing and execution remains unspecified.

About M1

The Abrams 1 tank, officially known as the M1 Abrams, is a powerful and heavily armored main battle tank that is currently used by the United States Army and Marine Corps. It was named after General Creighton Abrams, a former Chief of Staff of the United States Army. The M1 Abrams is designed for modern armored warfare and is capable of engaging enemy tanks, infantry, and fortified positions.

US M1A1 Abrams might get 'hunter-kill' anti-helicopter sensors
Photo: Wikipedia

The Abrams 1 tank was first introduced in the early 1980s and has since undergone several upgrades to enhance its capabilities. It features advanced composite armor, which provides excellent protection against various types of threats, including anti-tank missiles and artillery shells. The tank is powered by a gas turbine engine, allowing it to achieve high speeds on both roads and off-road terrain.

One of the key features of the Abrams 1 tank is its firepower. It is equipped with a 120mm smoothbore cannon, which can fire a variety of ammunition types, including armor-piercing rounds and high-explosive shells. The tank also has a secondary machine gun for engaging infantry and light vehicles. Additionally, it is equipped with advanced fire control systems and thermal imaging technology, which greatly enhances its accuracy and target acquisition capabilities.


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