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Aussies Are Fuming Over The Federal Government Spending $3.5 Billion On Tanks

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Aussies Are Fuming Over The Federal Government Spending $3.5 Billion On Tanks

The Australian government has confirmed it will shell out a casual $3.5 billion for a fleet of tanks from the United States.

We'll be getting more than 120 tanks and other armoured vehicles in the deal and the Sydney Morning Herald reports it will add to our military's growing arsenal of submarines, jet fighters and long-range missiles.

The newspaper also notes how this ballooning military might comes at the same time as Australian and Chinese tensions remain hot.

While that's all well and good, many Aussies are fuming at the idea of spending that amount of money on a tank fleet when there are more immediate issues plaguing the country.

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The government's decision not to subsidise rapid antigen tests (RATs) for all Australians has been a thorn in the Morrison administration's side for weeks now.

It's the hottest commodity to have amid the Omicron wave because lines for PCR tests have been incredibly long and results can take several days.

Many people on social media believe the government should have shelved the tank fleet purchase for a few more months and focused on providing RATs to people who need them instead.

What's even more baffling is that the new fleet will replace the army's 59 Abrams M1A1s, which were only bought in 2007 and haven't even seen combat.

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Defence Minister Peter Dutton says the tank fleet will be essential for Australia to defend itself in the future.

Credit: U.S. Army Reserve Photo by Spc. Jorge Reyes
Credit: U.S. Army Reserve Photo by Spc. Jorge Reyes

"Teamed with the infantry fighting vehicle, combat engineering vehicles, and self-propelled howitzers, the new Abrams will give our soldiers the best possibility of success and protection from harm," Mr Dutton said.

"The M1A2 Abrams will incorporate the latest developments in Australian sovereign defence capabilities, including command, control, communications, computers and intelligence systems, and benefit from the intended manufacture of tank ammunition in Australia.

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"The introduction of the new M1A2 vehicles will take advantage of the existing support infrastructure, with significant investment in Australian industry continuing in the areas of sustainment, simulation and training."

The SMH reports Australia will be spending upwards of $42 billion on armoured vehicles over the next few years.

That's despite national security experts suggesting these vehicles won't be relevant 'in a maritime and air conflict with a major power such as China'.

The last time Australia used a tank in combat was the Vietnam War.

Featured Image Credit: U.S. Army Reserve Photo by Spc. Jorge Reyes

Topics: Australia

Stewart Perrie
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