Poland’s defense minister signed an agreement on Wednesday to purchase a second batch of US Abrams main battle tanks as Warsaw bolsters its defensive capabilities and expands military cooperation with Washington in the wake of Russia’s invasion of neighboring Ukraine.
According to the authorities, Poland is the first U.S. ally in Europe to receive Abrams’s main battle tanks. Defense Minister Mariusz Błaszczak signed the $1.4 billion deal at a military base in Wesola, near Warsaw.
As of this year, the arrangement calls for the shipment of 116 M1A1 Abrams tanks alongside their supporting infrastructure and equipment.
U.S. Brigadier General John Lubas, deputy commander of the 101st Airborne Division, whose elements are stationed in southeastern Poland along the border with Ukraine, and Daniel Lawton, deputy director of the U.S. mission in Poland, were present for the signing.
The deal follows one signed last year for procuring 250 upgraded M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks to be delivered between 2025 and 2026. Poland is also expecting delivery of U.S. high-mobility artillery rocket systems and has already received missile batteries.
Officials from Poland and the United States made these claims at Wesola, stating that the accords will reinforce Poland, the region, and NATO’s Eastern Front in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.
What are the features of Abrams’s Main Battle Tanks?
The M1 Abrams is a main battle tank developed for the United States military. Some of its key features include:
- Chobham armor: Advanced composite armor known as “Chobham” armor protects the M1 Abrams from a wide range of dangers.
- Powerful engine: The M1 Abrams’s turbine engine allows it to move swiftly and maneuver effectively in combat.
- Armament: An M68A1 105mm cannon is installed in the M1 Abrams, and it can fire high explosive, armor-piercing, and canister projectiles, among others. A 7.62mm machine gun is coaxial with a 50 caliber machine gun mounted on top.
- Night vision capabilities: The M1 Abrams can perform well even when visibility is poor due to its array of night vision and thermal imaging capabilities.
- Fire control system: The main gun of the M1 Abrams can be aimed and fired with great precision thanks to the tank’s sophisticated fire control system.
- Crew comfort: Air conditioning and heating systems are included in the M1 Abrams to ensure the crew’s comfort no matter the weather.