Wednesday, March 18, 2015

M113A2 for the Philippine Army from US Army and Elbit Systems Scheduled to Arrive this year

The Philippine Army is expected to start receiving M113A2 armored personnel carriers from the US. These are to be acquired via Excess Defense Article grants by the US government.


After more than a year of delays, MaxDefense received confirmation from its Philippine Army sources that they are already scheduled to complete all necessary approvals from the US and Philippine governments that will enable them to receive 114 units of the M113A2 tracked armored personnel carriers. These will be divided into several versions including armored recovery and command vehicles, but will mostly be the standard armored personnel carriers.

These are US Army stocks and will be provided to the Philippines as Excess Defense Article (EDA) Grant by the US government. The beneficiary unit in the Philippine Army is the Mechanized Infantry Division (MID), who are currently operating the older M113A1 armored vehicles and its derivatives, the FMC Armored Infantry Fighting Vehicle and the Turkish ACV-300. This will enable the MID to increase its order of battle with more tracked units, while releasing more of their wheeled armored vehicles for smaller cavalry units.

Philippine Army personnel inspecting the M113A2 stored in a US Army facility 2 years ago. These are among those scheduled for transfer to the Philippine Army.
Photo taken from Mechanized Infantry Division, Philippine Army website.


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Aside from these armored vehicles from the US, another batch of M113A2 refurbished and upgraded by Elbit Systems Land and C4I of Israel will start deliveries also within this year. The contract for the project was awarded to Elbit in mid-2014, and they are given a year to deliver the said armored vehicles which falls to around middle of 2015.

Elbit Systems Land and C4I of Israel will supply upgraded M113A2 armored vehicles with Remote Weapons Systems.


This batch is composed of 14 fire support vehicles with the FV101 Scorpion's turret, 4 with 25mm cannon in remote weapons station (RWS), and 10 with 12.7mm machine gun in RWS.

MaxDefense previously discussed about this upcoming acquisition in a previous blog entry, seen HERE. More on this will be discussed should additional information be made available.


83 comments:

  1. Congrats sir Max on your blog for achieving 500 community members. Keep up the good job sir!

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    1. Actually the community was already bigger. But 500 in a span of 3 days is something.

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  2. Great news, but still the Philippines lack armored assets. I hope we could see some MRAP's in the future and more advance vehicles like the Stryker and LAV III.

    Max, any news in this assets will also have RWS systems? Or It would be equipped with SAM's or Anti-tank weapons?

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    1. The 114 M113A2 are standard US Army versions. Standard APC will come with gun mounts and armored cupola. There will also be ARV, command, and probably mortar carrier versions included in the group.

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  3. Sir max about the mrap, maybe the phil army can upgrade the SEAV and make a mrap version aside from the escort type.

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    1. It depends on the manufacturer if they have the capability to make an MRAP-type version of the SEAV. But I highly doubt they can do it without government support and foreign technical expertise. It would be best if they can tie-up will more established armored vehicle manufacturers.

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  4. Hi Sir Max, do you know where will the 28 APCs to be upgraded will come from. Will this come from existing PA APCs or will be be EDAs from the USA.

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    1. How about buying close in support aircraft for the ground troops like the A10 warthog or Apache 64 attack helicopters is it applicable ? �� ✈

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    2. How about buying A10 warthog or apache 64 attack helicopters for cloSe in support for the ground troops is it applicable ✈ ��

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    3. The Americans have said it again and again, they won't ever sell or donate A-10s because they fear that their enemies would try to copy it and its the pride of their armed force. If your going to look at the users of A-10, only America and none of it's allies operate one. On the question of Apache, there is a question of can we afford one with the current budget that we have? An Apache E cost around $35.5 m in 2014 alone.

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    4. To be more precise, actually, these 28 units of APC's (M-113A2+ version) are distinct from the 114 Units (M-113A2) donated by the U.S. through EDA. These units (which has never seen battle and only used for parades) came from the Belgian Army and will be upgraded to IFV's. As correctly reported in another article by Max Defense, 14 units will be retrofitted with 76mm L23A1 Turrets to be taken from the PA's old unserviceable Scorpion Tanks and a brand new Fire Control System, Six (6) units with brand new 12.7mm RCWS, Four (4) units with with brand new 25mm Unmanned Turret System and the remaining Four (4) units are ARV's. The budget for the purchase of these 28 APC's and upgrades was placed at Php882M.

      On the other hand, reliable sources from the military said that a visual inspection (one of the pictures of which is posted here)
      by the PA was conducted last June 2013 relative to the 114 APC units donated through EDA by the USA. At least 750 units of the M-113A2 was inspected at the depot in California, USA and only 96 units were found to still have good engines and transmissions. Contrary to the recent media reports, the Php882M budget for the upgraded was not donated by the US (through FMS), but is part of the AFP Modernization Trust Fund allocated since 2010. There was however a donation made (via FMS) for the refurbishing and repair (and not for transport expenses) of these 114 APC's in the amount of Php141,008,183.06. It was further learned that all vehicles inspected have no guns or copulas, but just the gun mounts. As the condition of the donation is on an "as is, where is" basis, no parts or accessories (except small parts such as the headlights) can be taken from other vehicles not selected were allowed, to complete whatever is missing from the units chosen by the inspecting team.

      To be accurate in the report, none of these 114 units are immediately deployable and usable by the PA once shipped to the country and will still need various hull, engine and transmission overhaul/repairs, re-painting and armament and fire control equipping.

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    5. Anonymous, can you PM me in FB? Thanks.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous, can you PM me in FB? Thanks.

      Delete
  5. Where this new vehicle will be deploy?

    And check this out Sir Max:
    https://medium.com/war-is-boring/ukraine-is-now-building-an-armored-battle-bus-b0f2faa93646

    Can Philippine built this locally?

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Thanks for sharing. I believe this is doable. The Marines previously had improvised gun trucks using M35 6x6 trucks with armored plating. The concept here is similar although this is better.

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    2. Do u have a picture of those truck?

      And i was hoping that u will make an article about locally produce military arms/equipment and vehicle. Because to be truth the articles is becoming quite depressing with mostly cover Philippine getting a second hand weapons and vehicles.

      A locally produce article will boost our moral and show that we have potential to be an arms exporter.

      With all respect and wishes.

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    3. You can check the following links below:

      http://www.armyrecognition.com/Asie/Philippines/Wheeled_vehicle/armoured_truck/Armoured_Truck_Philippine_Army_news_26072007_001.jpg

      http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g56/adroth92/DSCN2155-credited.jpg

      http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g56/adroth92/DSCN2158-credited.jpg

      The guntruck on the first photo differs from those on the second and third photos. They are open from the top, unlike the KrAZ Raptor that you highlighted.

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    4. I think this concept is doable here in our country.. with slight modification from PA's improvised gun truck. they can made something like this six-wheeled KrAZ Raptors Battle Bus with enclosed cargo and gun ports.
      Hiblood

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    5. This is great, add a roof and some AC because it probably hot without it and we have good APC. Easy, Cheap and Quick.

      Wait....

      Sir max why they don't make this in many number? And why not upgrade many existing trucks into this?

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    6. Sir Max, can I ask if its true that most of the armored platting of the PMs Talisman are from those decommissioned ships of the navy?

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  6. Sir Max, where would they be assigned? Is it all in Luzon, Visayas or Mindanao?

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    1. The Mechanized Infantry Division has brigades in both Luzon and Mindanao. Definitely both units will receive M113A2. Armored vehicles in the Visayas are usually Simba or V-150.

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    2. Sir max, that's a good news for us Here in Mindanao..We have a brigade of Marines in out municipality but what was lacking to their unit is this...Although Ive seen simba's here but the given specific areas for simba's to cover are huge,so I think it would be a great help for the marines here.

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  7. Why not buy from Russia i heard that the BMP-3 and BTR-90 are very good APC/IFV ?

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    1. Hi Carlo. The M113A2 are given as grants by the US government under its Excess Defense Article program.

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    2. They are good in terms of providing fire support and for being cheap but they are always plagued by their armor protection and lay-out. Most troops, due to their experience, tend to ride on top of the BMPs and BTR-90s.

      https://medium.com/war-is-boring/the-bmp-is-part-tank-part-taxi-4f469accd223

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  8. hope they will upgrade some with the M2 Bradley turrets just like in Egypt

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    1. The Army is more inclined into using RWS than 1-man or 2-man turrets. This will depend on the performance of the 1st batch of RWS-armed M113A2.

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    2. The guys in the turrets are easy targets of enemy snipers, unlike with the RWS, the gutter is covered by the armor protection. By the way, what's the level of armor protection of the M113A2?

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    3. Specs of M113A2:

      In 1979, further upgrades were introduced. Engine cooling was improved by switching the locations of the fan and radiator. Higher-strength torsion bars increased ground clearance, and shock absorbers reduced the effects of ground strikes. Armored fuel tanks were added externally on both sides of the rear ramp, freeing up 16 cubic feet of internal space. The weight of the M113A2 was increased to 25,880 lbs. Because the added weight affected its freeboard when afloat, it was no longer required to be amphibious. Four-tube smoke grenade launchers were also added. The suffix A2 is used on all variants to denote upgrade to A2 standard.

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  9. The AFP should have also considered to upgrade the armor plating of the coming APCs.

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    1. There are plans to provide RPG cages on some of the M113A2, which are actually removable. Emphasis will be first given on improving the communications, surveillance and offensive capability of the vehicles.

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  10. Sir Any news sa MDT Armor's Tiger Mk II evaluation ng AFP at PNP? More power sir.

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    1. We'll let you know. Still verifying with SpecTec trading and the Army.

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  11. Congratulation to MaxDefense for your great achievements in providing up to date information on the latest news surrounding the AFP modernization program and for your unbiased and reliable source of information .
    The news regarding the arrival of additional armored assets are great news for the Philippine Army Mechanize Division . If they could acquire the M113 A2 why not taking it one notch higher and look at the possibility of requesting as part of the EDA grant the M 60 A3 tank which are also available . They can start with a battalion size as a launching program in acquiring knowledge in modern tanks warfare . Also , with the current switching of the AFP to territorial defense and giving the PNP a more broader responsibility in internal security It would be smart to provide armored assets and air assets as well . As mentioned in your previous article on MRAP and the UH 1D choppers this would be ideal and cost effective in terms of additional air and fire support and commonality in terms of maintenance . This would also prevent another tactical mishap . Thanks again Max .

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  12. Good job sir Max for this news. Is there any chance sir Max that our AFP can request thru EDA grants the so called battle tank (Lincoln type or any) from the US Gov't.
    Mc Padz

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    1. There's no such thing as Lincoln type. Maybe you mean Abrams? So far the government has not requested any MBT although the best it can get through EDA are M60A3 Patton tanks.

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  13. there are many armored car manufacturer's in the Philippines. even those used by banks is better than going to war with buck naked trucks and humvees. the marines have the right idea... like what the US did in Afghanistan and Iraq, since we have no MRAPs yet, might as well weld thick metal plating all around our M35s, the Kia Trucks and Humvees in rebel infested areas.

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    1. I was informed that there were already some prototypes made by the Army of up-armored Kia KM450 trucks. Testing is still being made to make it better. The Army and PNP also received several up-armored Humvees, as seen in the Zamboanga Crisis although the numbers are not enough.

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  14. A compaby size unit if M60A3's or maybe even israeli Magach 6 or 7 mbt's could be a start. Just to get the feel of it. I hope the next administration will have more political will to strengthen our armed forces.

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    1. There are plans to acquire a battalion or 2 of main battle tanks, probably in the next phase of the Army's modernization efforts.

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  15. Sir max what is your take on the Magach 6 or 7? Would it be feasible for us to acquire some? Or are we better off with a M60A3 then equip it with israeli sensors and the like?

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    1. Magach and Patton series are already too old. The Philippines would be better start from those built in the 1980s at least, like the Leopard 2A4, K1A1, or Type 90 tank.

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    2. Sir Max, what about the Merkava MkVI?

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  16. I think tracked APCs, IFVs and tanks are more applicable to desert warfare and not suitable to our type of terrain in fighting insurgency. It will only destroy our paved roads. We should have more of the wheeled-types.

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    1. well the problem with wheeled types is when in battle it always get hit, mostly by m14 rifles (7.62x51mm) and takes hours to replace.

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    2. APC/IFVs are still suitable in our terrain because they offer transportation and fire support to our troops. The problem with having a tank in our country is geography. We are an island nation with a broken landmass and if there are plains suitable for tank operation, they are located mostly in Luzon and Mindanao. Another is that they need to work with infantry especially in urban and jungle terrain to minimize the chances of getting ambushed. Lastly, IF the insurgency is defeated in the near future our country still needs tracked vehicles because they offer some advantage to our troops in terms fire support, protection and etc to be able to effectively defeat a modern army.

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    3. Are there 8-wheeled APCs, IFVs and tanks with bullet-proof tires...

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    4. Again to reply with this post, I'm no military expert but only APCs and IFVs have wheeled variants. If there is a tank that is wheeled that you say, the closest you can get is B1 Centauro, AMX 10 RC, ERC Saggie, EE 9 Cascavel but these are more closely classified as light tank/armored reconnaissance (first 2) and fire support vehicles.

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    5. I think 8-wheeled (w/armor protected wheels) Light Tanks or Tank Destroyers are more than enough for the PA/PM. We do not need heavy Main Battle Tanks since our country does not have any land border with any other country or desert areas to engage in battle unless we intend to reclaim back Sabah from Malaysia through military force. Attack helicopters are more efficient in battling MBTs than tank-to-tank battles.

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    6. Hmmm. Good point about the attack helicopter, but still I disagree with you

      The problem with those light tank and tank destroyer concept is that they rely mostly on SPEED and to achieve this they have light armors - compared to their heavier cousins - which only provides limited protection from small arms and shrapnel. They also need wide open spaces to maneuver like plains and deserts. They just shoot and scoot and are not meant merely as a weapon used against MBTs on a one-on-one basis because they still need of A LOT OF SUPPORT from other tank destroyers.

      The important thing is this: As an army modernizes itself, their is always a need to equip itself in order to meet it's enemy in the the different situations in the battlefield. A tank or MBT is always a good addition to an armed force because it adds the necessary firepower and flexibility to defeat the enemy, tank or without tank. Take for example Taiwan. It is an island nation and shares no land border with any other country like what you've said, but still it has a large tank fleet. The reason? In Taiwan's concept of first strike they still need the fire power and flexibility of MBTs to properly engage and repel the invading enemy. Of course the first line of defense would be their navy and airforce but still they need a tank. Another is that MBTs provide what we call direct fire support that Light tanks, tank destroyers and field artillery can't provide. Americans during their liberation of the Philippines still used Shermans in their rush to capture Manila from Lingayen and in Mindanao because they still provide the direct fire support that the infantry needs. Not to mention that even though the Japanese in WW II has small to nothing of a sort of tank fleet in their arsenal, they still developed a medium tank to counter the armor of the Allies. But sadly, they were slow to progress in producing and developing a larger tank because of the fact that they prioritized building their navy when in fact they are now fighting a defensive war. Lastly, they stay longer in the battlefield than most aircrafts because those birds are expensive to operate when the only thing you want to do is to bomb something of a house. Recently, the Americans have been using Abrams in Afghanistan as a means fire support weapon, they only use aircrafts or field artillery when the target is out of their line-of-sight/fire of the tank.

      All armies can always see a need for tanks, its just a matter of when and why.

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  17. The Manila Times should read this article for them to understand well and the recent report regarding those refurbish helicopter will not happen again.

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  18. Max, off topic muna. I think the House Inquiry is a welcome oppurtunity for the DND to defend themselves for the acquistion of this Huey Refurb. This is the time to make a wake up call on our lawmakers that a bigget budget on the modernization must be allocated to buy new and sophisticated equipment so that no one will ever complain of a defective and vintage surplus equipment in the future. Dapat magising na sila sa katotohanan that our soldiers are truly deprived and yet confinue to sacrifice their lives for this country

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    1. MaxDefense is open to these investigations against the DND and Rice Aircraft Services. If corruption indeed happened on the deals, then those who did the crime should pay.

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  19. Sir Max, permission to post because its out of topic. Since the MBT issue is never dying even though our admin and AFP says that they would be acquiring one in the near future, lets play some sort of a game just to kill some time. Of course it's not bad or wrong to dream and be idealistic but IF were given the chance to suggest a tank for the AFP, what and why would it that be?

    Mine: Merkava. Why? Well, aside from Israel being a friendly nation and that has been producing its own military hardware according to its experience in its wars against its neighbors and the insurgent Hezbollah I choose the Merkava because of design, utility and cost.

    Design and utility: "It is designed for rapid repair of battle damage, survivability, cost-effectiveness and off-road performance. Following the model of contemporary self-propelled howitzers, the turret assembly is located closer to the rear than in most main battle tanks. With the engine in front, this layout is intended to grant additional protection against a frontal attack, especially for the personnel in the main hull, such as the driver. It also creates more space in the rear of the tank that allows increased storage capacity and a rear entrance to the main crew compartment allowing easy access under enemy fire. This allows the tank to be used as a platform for medical disembarkation, a forward command and control station, and an Infantry fighting vehicle. The rear entrance's clamshell-style doors provide overhead protection when off- and on-loading cargo and personnel.

    Cost: An estimated $6 million dollars.

    Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merkava

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    1. Nice but T-90 is better.

      Before everyone say buying from Russia is a forbidden, i ask by whom? USA? Everyone buy from Russia this day, just look around you. Malaysia for example is USA allies and Russian weapon user.

      Back to tank.

      T-90 is lighter than merkava so it suitable in soft terrain and old bridge. Cheaper so u can buy more or buy extra equipment. And is robust and easy to maintenance.

      Sure it's not the best tank, but then again so does Merkava. The best tank is contested by Abram, Challenger and Leonard, all to expensive.

      T-90 is a decent tank and affordable.

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    2. Me too would like our AFP to have mixed equipment also specifically from Russia. But the way I see it there no chance since most of officials in the Gov’t and the DND are too much western oriented. In military schooling alone our soldiers and officers are regularly sent to US for advance studies and because of this set-up a BOND of special relationship exist between the countries military. This will also show why our procurement are mostly US-made source. We follow western type equipment because this is the result of education we receive from them. It’s funny we don’t trust Russian made equipment but they like our beaches very much. In case you don’t know a lot of them are here already contributing to our economy spending a lot of money by staying longer and some rented regularly on condominiums fronting the beaches. So can we try at least get out of this westernized thinking and start buying Russian equipment? Renbios.

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    3. Yep, T-90 is also a good tank when it comes to protection, firepower and cost but the reality is it suffers more on its soft capabilities than those western tanks. I think the Germans comes first, next the Challenger and last the Abrams. :)

      Here an analysis to some problems with Soviet/Russian Tank design:
      http://chris-intel-corner.blogspot.com/2013/04/recurring-problems-of-soviet-tank-design.html

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    4. How can it be that Russian tanks are of inferior quality. If the T-34 is not a great tank then Red Army would not have march from Moscow to Berlin. T-34 is their symbol which defeated the Nazi Germany. T-34 outclassed the earlier generation of german tanks (panzer 1 & 2) deployed at the USSR invasion. That’s why the Germans develop another generation of tanks (panther and tigers) to counter the T-34.

      That video posted in the article is from current the Syrian conflict. It was hit by rpg-29 fired from the rebels. Even though the tank was hit the crew survived. I think this is the most important aspect when it comes to tank design: crew survivability. Renbios

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    5. It's not fair to judge T-90 with T-34 as reference as that is as accurate to judge Abrams as good as Sherman.

      Not accurate cause that is a long time ago.

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    6. If were going to looked at it carefully, the dome turret of Soviet tank design was a development from the T-34 turret. The design of turret which is specifically well angled due to its rounded shape and combined with thickness provides a chance of deflection and a none penetrating hit. The low silhouette (height) of the turret presents a smaller target. But with that comes the recurring problems of soft capabilities of cramped space, low main gun elevation/depression, low ammo stowage, dangers of ammo/fuel cells located at the turret and poor ergonomics (crew comfort) which affects crew performance and the tank as a whole.

      The T-54 is a development from the T-44 (designation 44 is from the 1944) which is a development of T-34 medium tank. Unlike most of their Western contemporaries, the Soviet line of tanks are a successful development of one another with the exception of T-90 (developed from T-72) which in return inherited these problems mentioned above. The cramped space means smaller crews are needed, crews are more susceptible combat fatigue/stress and that when a shot on the turret penetrated it means their kaput. Low elevation and depression means a tank can't properly shoot beyond them -20 or +30 degress. The Russians experienced this on the 2nd battle of Grozny where insurgents were hidden well below the elevation and depression of the tanks. Low ammo stowage means that you have less ammo to carry and that you have to leave a battlefield in order to replenish. Due also to the design of the turret, it means that fuels and ammo are stored within it, and as what you saw on the GIF picture that you saw. The tank was hit on its turret and a catastrophic explosion ensued. That's the danger of having ammo and fuel cells located at your turret.

      Soviet/Russian tanks and AFVs are cheap to acquire and maintain because their doctrine of Deep Battle. Mass attacks of armor to envelop the enemy but at the price of great loss, which Soviet planners agreed that is inevitable.

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    7. The article clearly points out the inherent qualities of Soviet tank design that the Russians have adopted. The author didn't say that they were inferior of quality and made no comparisons of the T-34 and T-90. If the author made a comparison, it was between Soviet and Western tanks when in they were in battle. Further reading of the article also states that the Russians have a good tank and that the "soft problems" can be negated or lessen if it was applied with the CORRECT STRATEGY in the form of COMBINED ARMS. The same goes with Western built tanks.

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    8. Hope this link will give you some ideas on Russian tank design philosophy particularly the poor ergonomics which you mentioned and it is on time stamp 17:30

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMiJr6Ckrug

      The tank was hit at the side Sir. We all know how vulnerable the sides and rear of ALL Main Battle tanks even the ABRAM suffered hits at the sides by insurgents rpg-7 in Iraq. Crew survivability is important in tank design. You can replace a tank anytime by producing more in the factory but you cannot replace immediately with NEWLY- trained crews especially during wartime condition. One common feature of Russian tanks is that it is less complicated and simple to produce that’s why Russia won the war against Germany because the Germans cannot produce in great quantity and deliver fast to the frontlines due to their overcomplicated design philosophy. Renbios

      T-90 is a great tank tank Sir according to them :
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kAofuApy5sc

      Happy viewing...

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    9. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    10. Sorry have to delete my first comment. :)

      First of all, we know and agree that the T-90 is a superb tank. That is a fact and there's no argument about that.
      Second, I only shared the article and further explained the problems plaguing Soviet philosophy in tank design that the Russians inherited. Soviet or Russian philosophy in tank design has to do more with their military doctrine. These problems are in stark contrast with Western philosophy in designing costly tanks in terms of development, procurement and operation. The XM1 or M1 Abrams was particularly developed not has an offensive weapon but as a anti-Russian tank.
      Third, even the CIA made an analysis on Soviet armor and supporting elements that resulted into the development of M1 Abrams and anti-tank weapons for the NATO. In the analysis, it also made a bleak announcement that even with these improvements they would be tactically limited.

      http://www.foia.cia.gov/sites/default/files/document_conversions/89801/DOC_0001066239.pdf

      Last of all, I have doubts anything coming from despotic or authoritarian regimes. They smell and stink of propaganda made by state controlled or regulated medias. Even if it has truth with it, we must always be objective or see two sides of the story and never let our preferences rule our analysis because Russia for example has employed legions of trolls to protect it's interest. The image and notion of Russian tanks "being inferior" is a matter of question on the quality of those exported and the tactics used by the end-users. They called those exported tanks ask Monkey tanks and are of inferior quality than those used produced for the Russian Army. More importantly, the T-90 and M1 never fought each other on the field. Unless they fought each other on the battlefield, they are only superior to their users and on paper only.

      Here's an another analysis on the myths surrounding the T-34:
      http://www.operationbarbarossa.net/the-t-34-in-wwii-the-legend-vs-the-performance/

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    11. Again with comparing T-90 with T-34. Seriously? Drop it already!!!

      Look Russian tank is good, but not the best. OK we get it!!!

      But Russian tank is the best tank that Philippine can get at affordable price. Sure is monkey tank or inferior, but still the best option that it's affordable. Plus Russia is not the only nation that sell inferior product, stop being hateful.

      If u don't like T-90 then please present us a better option with affordable price. Cause im sure that is hard to find.

      Want western tank? OK....Pay up the the hefty price!!!

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    12. Let's be honest and be open-minded OK? Whats the point of giving suggestion and ideas in reply to comments if we are not open to ideas of others? The essence of having to share ideas, objective understanding and most of all learning from others becomes none. I only gave that ANALYSIS on the INHERENT (MINANA) qualities of Russian tank design derived from T-34 for us to learn something because its true that they were the evolution of the later. Even though the analysis is true, I guess I was wrong to think that you were open to ideas.

      So sorry my friend if sounded like one and if what you said is true that I am guilty of making a derogatory or hateful remarks by giving facts or truths to be objective, so be it. If my frank and factual lengthy explanations of my points and cases of arguments if this was a debate was unacceptable to you, then sorry. We don't have to be sarcastic about it.

      Truth is, I admired and idolized Soviet/Russia's military way of thinking, especially in terms of military capability. I also wanted our country to have Russian made wares. But then how come I deviated and on my post I chose the Merkava as my preferred tank? Check again on the reasons why I gave it.

      Voltaire once said: "I do not agree with a word that you say, but I will still defend to the death your right to say it." That means I do not agree with all of you to the point that I am willing to learn because I am open to your ideas and I will defend you right to express it. I never said you were wrong with your comments if you reread them again. It was an analysis and not a comparison.

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    13. Questions: Who wants to learn about the history and evolution of tanks?

      So , if you have the patience to read 300 + pages of words and pictures of analysis about the evolution of the tanks; then I would like to share this to you: "The World Encyclopedia of Tanks".

      http://ebookandpdf.com/other/22588-world-encyclopaedia-of-the-tank-an-international.html

      Its in PDF format and you can download the whole book for free. Just click on the highlighted words in blue then follow then instructions. Sadly, the encyclopedia only covers modern tanks up to AMX-30, Chieftain, M1 Abrams and T-80.

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    14. Sir, Merkava tanks suffered great loses during the 2006 Lebanon war with Hezbollah. After that no more Merkava tanks participated in major combat. They were absent in last December war in Gaza. I guess the tanks advertisement on invincibility and superior protection were not true after all.Renbios

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzVEduKGUws
      And here is the video of Russian Tank that was hit 5 times and still the tank manage to operate.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nw1woCWfp0U

      Let us also watch the next generation main battle tank of Russia (Armata Tank) this coming May 9 Victory Day Parade. The west has so far not develop the next generation of battle tanks to counter this Armata Tank.

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    15. Yep, it has more to do with their combat losses during the 2006 Lebanese war. The reason for this is that they have been grounded for reevaluation and study of their tactical deficiencies that was ordered by general staff if there is a need to replace them. We must also remember that Hezbollah has the largest arsenal of anti-tank and rockets in the world like the latest RPG-29 Vampir and Kornet which can defeat any modern MBT in the field.

      Hmmm. It seems a T-72 tested for the Kontakt-5 ERA. I have reservations because I don't know when was this was taken and if it was fired on the same or different spots. Why? Chechen and Hezbollah insurgents proved that even with the use of ERA, modern MBTs are still susceptible to one thing: Infantry carried HEAT missiles fired at the same spot to make maximum effect. Again that's another reason for the development of Active Protection System like the Trophy and Arena.

      About that, they say that the Armata has an crewless and automated turret with a 155 mm gun. Excited about it too!

      For the next generation of tanks by the Western nations? I think this would answer your question:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Future_Combat_Systems_Manned_Ground_Vehicles#Mounted_combat_system

      Unlike the Ruskies, where they develop their tanks with present platforms the Western in particular US is developing another separate tank platform that would be the basis for different variants. Another waste of time and money for development and acquisition just like the F-35 Strike Fighter I guess.

      Cheers mate, Happy Holy Week. :)

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    16. @ Armchair General:

      Dude (u a dude right?) im open with idea and discussion, but u seriously have irrelevant fact. Why did you bring that link if it's have no T-90 in it? It's irrelevant fact.

      So what about evolution or inherent design? Do u think at this point it's still not being fix? No improvement? If they improve it then what is the problem?

      Your post is also have personal taste of hate of Russian product and design. U say the design is good but at a price and then u emphasize the "PRICE". U make it as the benefit is more small than the price. Let's try do that in western tank design :

      Western tank is bigger, more comfy for the crew and more ammunition. Now lets talk about the PRICE of this design:
      - More expensive.
      - More heavy.
      - More bigger mean more easy to be shoot at.
      - More hard to maintain.
      - More complex and logistical more demanding than Russian Tank.

      And let's not forget elevation or depression mean nothing if your enemy fight from roof top or from cellar in urban war like in Grozny. Even USA tank will no fare better. U need Infantry to guard tank at urban warfare.

      All i do is suggest T-90, because is a good tank. Than after u post your comment, i ask to not compare it with T-34, which u ignore. I especially angry at the article link. I even quote the author say :

      "The T-90 is just a modernized T-72. They changed the name after the Gulf War showed how poor their weapon systems performed. It has all the flaws of the T-72.

      The T-80 also has the same problems of limited internal space and gun depression.

      They all look the same as they were built with the same design principles."

      If this is his judgement then i suggest u don't read any of his article ever again. Not only its wrong i can even give u a better article and author:

      http://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/what-america-can-learn-from-russias-cheap-but-deadly-t-1540829820

      Lastly when u say u pick merkava? The first one is anonymous not u.

      Look i pick T-90 not by personal preference, but by the best for Philippine. Personally i prefer CV-90 tank with 120 gun or second hand Leopard tank or even that Polish stealth tank that will be available in few year. But i know none of this is available to Philippine because budget and minimum 2 customer rule. I stick to objective discussion.

      If u really do an objective discussion u will realize that Merkava is to expensive and can't be buy because no nation except Israel have bought it.

      And Happy Easter for U!!!

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  20. Are the incoming armored vehicles have restored amphibious capability Sir Max? ( M113 specs have amphibious capability)Or the program is only concentrated on the upgrading of modern firepower like the RWS. I believe we need this capability to all types of armored assets we have since we have lots of rivers, lakes and wetland in our country. As far as I can recall I think it was mentioned in the BOI report (SAF 44 issue) or during the senate session that the ability of the AFP to rescue the SAF is hampered because the area involved are marshland and the armored assets are not capable to perform amphibious task. I hope this feature is included in the deal and if not? Russia for one is a good example. All of their armored personnel carriers like BMP-3, BRDM or BDM are fully amphibious and designed for any types of terrain whether wetland or dryland. I think we should follow this kind of concept. Make sense for Indonesia to choose BMP-3 over other armored vehicle types. Renbios

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  21. Latest Article from Mr. Erwin Tulfo published at the Manila Times today.

    http://www.manilatimes.net/big-kickback-on-m113-purchase/173530/

    Please allow me to respond to this article point by point...

    "Common sense dictates that buying 28 units of armored personnel carrier from Israel will generate fat kickbacks for some defense and military officials rather than getting it for free from the US."

    - This may be true, but is not using one’s common sense automatically equate the action to be illegal or anomalous? Is this now anywhere in our Revised Civil Code, Revised Penal Code or any of our laws? Can anyone please point this out to me?

    "Actually, my source at the Joint United States Military Action Group (JUSMAG) in Camp Aguinaldo said the US has donated 114 M113 armored personnel carrier to the Philippine armed forces in 2013."

    - Once more, True, but that was all that was donated. It’s up for us to bring those decommissioned vehicles here. No help there from the US Government."

    "The same source said that the US military top brass in the country were surprised upon learning that the Department of National Defense (DND) has approved the purchase of 28 used M113s from Israel worth P880 million rather than bringing into the country the APCs from the US that were given free."

    - Uh… Again, is being “surprised” now is illegal?

    "Rumor has it that some DND officials earned a whooping P180 million in commission from the purchase of the said APCs from Elbit Systems Ltd. of Israel.

    Wow!!!!"

    - I completely AGREE!!! WOW!!!! OUR NEWSPAPERS HAS NOW TURNED TO BE RUMOR-MONGERERS!!! The Legislative should probably begin reviewing and revising our Constitutional Right to Freedom of the Press, for irresponsible journalists not to abuse this right. The public has the right to know only the truth and nothing but the truth, not rumors!

    "This contract should be terminated right away for obvious reasons."

    - Because of these “Rumors”??? Really??? WOW!!!!

    I just hope that our esteemed Senators Ejercito and Escudero will have the mind and the political will not to be swayed by these "Rumors," and will only act with due diligence and wisdom to separate the chaff from the grain. Else, their credibility and image before the Filipino during this coming elections stands to suffer, if all these rumors eventually proves to be that... merely rumors...

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    Replies
    1. Let me answer that in my latest blog entry coming soon.

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    2. Just noticed, it's the Manila Times again.

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    3. Made to profit News outlet sir. Most of the news coming from it is recycled.

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  22. Numerous M113A2s and 5 ton trucks are now parked in rows at the western edge of the ramp of the Subic Bay International Airport, visible from the road. Anybody have any intel on this movement?

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  23. Let us all campaign against Chiz Escudero, Franklin Drilon and many other politicians who don't support the AFP Modernization Program. Let us not forget Bongbong Marcos who blames the government for escalating the tensions in the West Philippine Sea by seeking the help of the US. Bongbong Marcos still wants to maintain a friendly relationship with China despite China's aggressive behavior by building islands inside our territory. These politicians are very unpatriotic.

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  24. Sir Max, is there an update to this procurement?

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  25. Here ya go:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZP3ZSdAUiBM

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  26. Sir max..hope you can answer my question.. I read your articles...every times there is update..specially in this series about M113A2 with ELBIT System.. My question is why the PA always want APC?.. Fire support etc.. Why not to have MBT.. ? regardless of model and type..

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    Replies
    1. Because the Army lacks APCs. The Philippine Army has the least APCs in the ASEAN region, has a small ratio between infantry to APC/IFV, and is really needed now.

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