1/5/2023 – War update and commentary

From Jamie Peipon (Day 314): Finally, some big promises were made today and it happens to be exactly what I wrote about yesterday. France (France?!) said that they will provide Ukraine with an unspecified number of AMX-10 RC AFVs. These are the first officially-pledged western armored fighting vehicles. They are also transferring Bastions, which are French armored personnel carriers.

In addition to that, some reporters yelled a question to President Biden across a Kentucky tarmac today: “Are Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicles on the table for Ukraine?” He yelled back, “Yes.” Reports came out later in the day citing senior US officials that said that the Bradleys could be included in a new package of US support that could be announced as early as the end of this week.

Each of these vehicles is a small tank-like vehicle with big guns, and lots of armor to protect the passengers. It is easy to imagine that the highly-armed, small, and quick mechanized units will be perfect for the “shoot and scoot” strategy that Ukraine so often employs. The French AFVs are considered armored reconnaissance vehicles and serve the function of “tank killer.” Some of these are on wheels, and others are on tracks. These will go a long way towards saving Ukrainian military lives and providing the firepower that will drive russians out.

Actual main battle tanks still seem to be off the table. But there does seem to be a great candidate to provide them (looking at you, Germany). Hopefully, the US and European allies can help to pressure Germany into “freeing the Leopards.” During this war, no country has provided more materiel to Ukraine than has russia. They have unintentionally handed over more equipment than any country has intentionally supplied and videos show that they are still scraping the bottom of their russian barrel for every tank, even ones that are some eighty-years-old, and putting them on trains to head west. Ukraine is being replenished with more modern equipment, russia is loading museum pieces onto trains and desperately trying to get them to the front.

“Oh, grant us help against the foe,
for vain is the salvation of man!
With God we shall do valiantly;
it is he who will tread down our foes.”

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