No Longer Fears, The U.K. and Poland Are Send Modern Tanks to Ukraine

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After months of deliberations and debates, two NATO member states have made the decision to donate Western-style tanks to Ukraine. The UK will donate Challenger 2 tanks, while Poland will donate German-made Leopard 2 tanks. The deal aims to give Ukraine the tools it needs to retake lost territory and encourage other countries – notably Germany – to break self-imposed restrictions against sending tanks.

It was a natural decision for NATO to send obsolete Soviet T-72 tanks to Ukraine in the past since several member states had been storing them for a long time. Ukrainian tanks, which are similar in design and use the same ammunition, are easier to operate, arm, and maintain. Although Ukraine’s tanks are not as sophisticated as Western-style ones, they still have all of the disadvantages of Russian tanks.

Ukraine says it needs 300 western tanks to be able to liberate its territory from Russian occupation. It has its own fleet of Soviet-designed tanks, including hundreds captured from Russian forces and donated T-72 models from Poland and the Czech Republic. But spare parts and ammunition for them are limited. Western battle tanks, with their superior armour and firepower, would give Kyiv new offensive capabilities.

Western-style tanks have not been supplied by NATO until now. Many alliance members wanted to avoid giving Ukraine such tanks, despite their superiority in several ways. Not only would providing such tanks anger nuclear-armed Russia, but the tanks would require greater direct logistical support, further dragging NATO into the conflict. The American Abrams tank is generally considered to be less practical in Ukraine, for instance, as it uses a gasoline-powered turbine engine, and would require Ukraine to supply the front line with both gas and diesel.

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