Jump to content

Army to Congress: Thanks, but no tanks


Recommended Posts

They should at least cover those tanks with a tarp, or store them inside a giant warehouse somewhere. Letting them rot in the elements can't be good.

They make it seem shady that General dynamics will get the contract to upgrade and work on the tanks because they contributed some money to congress. General dynamics is probably the only company in the U.S. with the capability and expertice to do it. The only other alternative would be to let a german company do it and send the jobs and money over there.

Link to post
Share on other sites
They should at least cover those tanks with a tarp, or store them inside a giant warehouse somewhere. Letting them rot in the elements can't be good.

What elements?

It's the Nevada desert. Maybe Arizona is even drier, but we're not talking about tanks exposed to torrential rains or even a moderate degree of humidity. It may not be perfect, but it could be a lot worse.

They make it seem shady that General dynamics will get the contract to upgrade and work on the tanks because they contributed some money to congress. General dynamics is probably the only company in the U.S. with the capability and expertice to do it. The only other alternative would be to let a german company do it and send the jobs and money over there.

Well, lesson #1 for a journalist - you have to tell a story. "News" are not, have never been, and will never be an objective report of facts. They are just a different form of entertainment and - IMO - only rarely of real importance. Where important stuff is about to happen, spin doctors will try to downplay it, or hide it by side-tracking the audience. Or it's too late already and it's reported only when nothing can be done about it.

"Channel Six News - a car chase guaranteed, or the weather announcer will wear a tube top!"

Link to post
Share on other sites

I would cover them up, but thats because I'm PARANOID about the idea of weaponry getting the tiniest speck of dirt or rust on it.

But honestly it makes sense to me not to refurbish tanks that we don't need, particularly now. Why not hold off for three years on refurbishing them to todays standards and instead refurbish them to tomorrows standards later on?

Edit: Naturally if congress wants to spend money thats NOT part of the military budget to rebuild them...Fine by me, we've got lots of other programs like our various free handout programs that could be cut instead.

Link to post
Share on other sites

They're being stored at Sierra Army Depot in northern California (Hint: read the very first two words of the article).

"...climate is arid, with low relative humidity and precipitation....average yearly high temperature of 66.9 (19.4) degrees and a low of 36.4 (2.4) degrees. Average yearly precipitation is 7.49 inches (190 mm), with an average yearly humidity of only 30.96."

[Edit]

I don't find this surprising at all. At a past job, my employer had a subscription to Jane's Defense Weekly. At the end of each issue, they had an itemized list of defense spending for that week. Sometimes, I would see an item where the money or number of units was greater than what was requested. While this was not common, it was certainly not an extremely rare event either.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think they will come to harm in that climate; thousands of obsolescent and reserve aircraft have been stored at Davis Monthan AFB for decades without coming to physical harm.

But is some of these tanks need repair, surely it makes sense to do it now and put them in the reserve - or in the 'one careful owner' tank lot. Delaying the reapair of something until its actually required for action is not that smart IMHO.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Whether you have 5,000 combat-ready M1s or 7,000, what's the matter? If the US happened to accidentally stumble into a conflict where the 5,000 aren't enough, I somehow doubt that 7,000 Abrams tanks will revert the picture. Just for comparison, Germany has now about 300 tanks ready, Denmark 50, Switzerland 400, the Netherlands 0, the UK about 200 ... do I need to go on?

Link to post
Share on other sites
The money could be better spend on infrastructure. Won't get votes though.

That's what the Stimulus was for. Remember the “Shovel Ready jobs" that were not so shovel ready? It's all political BS. When defense is no longer a priority and the money is better spent on "social welfare" errrr, “wealth redistribution” a nation is in decline and in trouble. Welcome to the USA 2012.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Whether you have 5,000 combat-ready M1s or 7,000, what's the matter? If the US happened to accidentally stumble into a conflict where the 5,000 aren't enough, I somehow doubt that 7,000 Abrams tanks will revert the picture. Just for comparison, Germany has now about 300 tanks ready, Denmark 50, Switzerland 400, the Netherlands 0, the UK about 200 ... do I need to go on?

Yeah, but none of those countries share a border with Canada.

Link to post
Share on other sites

@Tank Guy

Please ignore the above post. We welcome the input of every member, regardless of the number of previous posts.

To answer your question, a small amount of politics is tolerated depending on its content and context. Since armed forces is a component of government, politics entering into a discussion of this nature cannot be entirely avoided. This thread for example, may or may not veer off on a tangent about economics. At this point, we normally will not say anything and see if it stays on topic. We will only step in if it starts to spiral out of control.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Point taken. But if you have THAT many in service and in reserve, does it make any sense to have hundreds more sitting around with 'Awaiting Repair' labels on them? Fix 'em or scrap e'm, I say. Or flog 'em off cheap to your allies. But I suppose while they are sitting out there in the desert they're not costing anything. So kick the disposal problem down the road for someone else to deal with - eventually.

Link to post
Share on other sites
But is some of these tanks need repair, surely it makes sense to do it now and put them in the reserve - or in the 'one careful owner' tank lot. Delaying the reapair of something until its actually required for action is not that smart IMHO.

I think Army’s argument is why rip out the 2009 “widget” and replace it with the 2012 version at a cost of $X when in three years time you’ll be spending $X again to rip the 2012 “widget” out and replace it with the 2015 version.

Better to leave the 2009 one in place and then only spend $X to replace the 2009 one with the 2015 one.

Link to post
Share on other sites
I think Army’s argument is why rip out the 2009 “widget” and replace it with the 2012 version at a cost of $X when in three years time you’ll be spending $X again to rip the 2012 “widget” out and replace it with the 2015 version.

Better to leave the 2009 one in place and then only spend $X to replace the 2009 one with the 2015 one.

Thats the way I'm seeing it.

Plus you could run into issues with fleet standardization, or with your return on investment. If you start now, either the tanks that get overhauled to 2012 spec get another overhaul in three years to the 2015 specifications, or when 2015 rolls around you wind up with a bunch of tanks that are three years old so you wind up overhauling fewer tanks to the 2015 specs because you've already got a bunch that are only three years old so why not just mix them all together?...Yhea....

Random question...I wonder if they held on to any 105mm gunned Abrams tanks?

Link to post
Share on other sites
But I suppose while they are sitting out there in the desert they're not costing anything.

Primary driver here.

Theres a Power Plant in Scotland which they built for X million squids

but they never commissioned the thing.

It was an exercise to give the populace something to do.

But it would cost the same again, if not more to tear the thing down, (See thread about Ammo Disposal, GD forum) so it just sits there, (untill it becomes a hazard, or someone getssalpped with a hefty fine)

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well they could be used for HA APC's or more mine clearing veh's or any platform that uses the M1 as a starting point. Then there is the reef option that has served the USA quite well. Or targets for current working models, the list is endless. But given the current situation spending more $$ for the cash strapped US will be the way out of what to do with all the M1's.:redface:

And there is the Afghanistan army who will need tanks some day (can't see what for but hey:confused:) to help out various defense industries supply of parts, and the oil company's need for new customers, like I'm saying lots of options.:biggrin:

Link to post
Share on other sites
Isnt this introducing political topics into the thread?

If we are discussing the subject of military spending, we might as well add in the issue of cost-benefit analysis. Anything related to budgets involve such calculations.

I didn't want to respond to the other reply due to not wanting to get too far into party politics.

Link to post
Share on other sites

A factor to remember is that if the production facilities are shut down, most of the trained technicians will seek work elsewhere. It won't be easy to get them back in 3-5 years when the government decides to reopen the contracts. The US government cannot simply order workers experienced in tank production to move back to Lima and get to work, even if a war has already started. Therefore, the US Army's stated position will not bode well for maintaining our current technological dominance on the battlefield.

On the other hand, the US has done a pretty good job of ramping up the industrial base for war on the past. We could once again rely on our geographical isolation to allow time for rebuilding the industry. That, of course, would reduce our current ability to be a viable world power. Maybe that would be good, maybe not. It would also mean that those soldiers caught in the early days of a future conflict would suffer badly, just as US soldiers have done in most of our past wars.

I think that our society has become so distant from the reality of armed conflict that they will not support the cost of a superior military for much longer. The US will end up relying on the latter strategy more from complaceny than from a conscious decision that it is the better option.

Link to post
Share on other sites
If we are discussing the subject of military spending, we might as well add in the issue of cost-benefit analysis. Anything related to budgets involve such calculations.

Cost benefit analysis? Budgets? You must live on another planet. There is no budget and hasn't been one for 3 years. We borrow 40 cents of every dollar we spend in the US. Even if there was a budget, it sure as hell wouldn't be balanced.

Link to post
Share on other sites
I think Army’s argument is why rip out the 2009 “widget” and replace it with the 2012 version at a cost of $X when in three years time you’ll be spending $X again to rip the 2012 “widget” out and replace it with the 2015 version.

Better to leave the 2009 one in place and then only spend $X to replace the 2009 one with the 2015 one.

I agree. But I was thinking of repair, as opposed to upgrading. On the assumption that they had busted tracks or cooked engines or something that could be put right relatively cheaply. Maybe misunderstood.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...