US Army to install Israeli equipment on Abrams tanks

US M1A2 Abrams tanks in Iraq
US M1A2 Abrams tanks in Iraq

The US Army will install Israel’s Trophy active-protection system on its third-generation main battle tanks, M1A2 Abram, making it the first foreign army to use the system which is designed to detect and neutralize incoming projectiles.

The Pentagon said it made the approval following “an urgent material” request by the army, Israeli media reported on Monday.

The system has a total of four radar antennae and fire-control radars which track incoming projectiles such as anti-tank guided missiles and rocket-propelled grenades. The Trophy fires a shotgun-type blast to neutralize the threat once it is detected.

A Michigan-based company got the contract to install the system on an Armor Brigade Combat Team’s M1A2 SEPv2 at a cost of close to $10 million. The process is expected to be completed by the end of March 2019.

The US army is likely to use the tanks equipped with Israeli active protection systems in the Middle Eastern countries such as Iraq and Syria where it has deployed thousands of troops purportedly to fight against Daesh terrorists.

The US and Israeli militaries have a close cooperation and often sell and supply weapons to each other.

During Israel’s 2014 war of aggression on the Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip, the US military supplied the majority of military equipment to Israeli forces.

According to an Israeli rights group, 63 percent of the Palestinian fatalities caused in Israel’s war on Gazans were civilians.

Washington has also been providing Israeli with $3.1 billion annually since a 2007 agreement with the former president George W. Bush’s administration. From next year, the US is increasing this military assistance to Israel to around $3.8 billion annually.