Weapons manufacturer bribes Congress to buy tanks that Pentagon doesn't want?
Published: 31 July, 2012, 22:13
The Pentagon wants to save $3 billion by freezing refurbishing work on its M1Abrams tanks, but the tank’s manufacturers are donating to Congressional campaigns to bribe members of Congress to lobby for their continued funding.
While the M1 tank has survived the Cold War, two conflicts in Iraq and the war in Afghanistan, its value has declined in US efforts abroad. Aside from being vulnerable to improvised bombs, the tanks don’t serve much of a purpose while warfare is limited.
Their primary purpose is to destroy other tanks, according to Paul D. Eaton, a retired army general. Their usefulness is therefore limited in modern counterinsurgency warfare. The US Army already has more than 2,300 M1’s deployed and about 3,000 more being stored at a military base in California.
Instead of continuing to pay for the M1’s, which each weigh as much as nine elephants, the Pentagon, facing smaller budgets, wants to instead use its funds to redesign the vehicle.