Germany delays sale of armored cars (HA´ARETZ NEWS) By Amnon Barzilai 02/01/05)
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The German government is holding up the signing of a contract for the
sale of Dingo armored cars to Israel for fear that the Israel Defense
Forces will use them against the Palestinians. In talks over recent
weeks with senior Israeli officials, the Germans have said they have
no objection in principle to approving the sale of the all-purpose
vehicles, but that it is "a problem of timing."
The IDF decided to acquire 100 Dingo-2 armored cars for the
transportation of troops and for patrols, particularly in the
territories. The deal is worth some $60 million.
The armored cars, due to be the first of their kind in the IDF, are
supposed to replace the more cumbersome, high maintenance M-116
Armored Personnel Carriers that have carried the troops since the
1960s, and which provide less protection. The IDF was searching for
both a heavy APC that would provide protection against missiles and a
lighter armored car that could be used on paved roads and rough
In order to use American military aid for the purchase, the Israeli
Defense Ministry arranged for the transfer of the know-how and
production from the German Krauss-Maffei Wegmann firm to the American
firm, Textron. It was agreed that the American firm would produce
most of the parts in the U.S. while certain parts, including the
engine that is manufactured by a subsidiary of Mercedes, would be
manufactured in Germany and sent to the U.S.
The contract was signed at the beginning of last summer, and since
then most of the agreements between Textron and the Defense Ministry
have been completed. However the parallel contract that Textron was
supposed to sign with the German producer has been held up.
The Dingo-2 is an air transportable, armored mine-proof vehicle,
based on a commercial chassis produced by DaimlerChrysler, designed
for high mobility in any type of terrain.
The vehicle is fitted with an armored cage protecting the passengers,
engine compartment, fuel tank and cargo bay. The modular, repairable
armor provides protection against all types of hand-held weapons, as
well as artillery fragments up to 155 millimeters.
In addition, it is fitted with an oblique "blast deflector" floor,
providing crew protection against heavy anti-tank mines and anti-
personnel mines. It is designed to travel at speeds of up to 90
kilometers per hour, and has a range of 1,000 kilometers. The diesel-
powered vehicle can carry eight fully equipped troops.
The IDF plans to fit the Dingo-2 with a "lethal" overhead weapon
station that was developed at Rafael that can operate two types of
machine guns and an automatic grenade-launcher.
Sources in the defense establishment expressed hope yesterday that
the deal would be sped up by progress in the talks being held between
Israel and the Palestinians, and the planned disengagement plan which
will take the IDF out of the Gaza Strip. (© Copyright 2005 Haaretz.
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