Ukrainians to Complete Abrams Tank Training by Summer’s End

June 14, 2023

Defense officials said Wednesday that some 200 Ukrainians are expected to complete U.S.-led training on Abrams tanks by the end of the summer.

That training should roughly line up with an expected fall delivery of 31 M1A1 Abrams tanks that President Biden promised to send back in January to help Ukraine “defend its sovereignty.”

The Ukrainians are currently training in Germany—numerous of whose Leopard tanks have also been donated to the war effort—while the U.S. tanks undergo refurbishment.

The 200 Ukrainians are currently in week three of an expected 12-week training period, according to defense officials. 

At present the U.S. is training about 1,700 Ukrainians in various platforms, and officials say the U.S. has trained a total of more 11,000 Ukrainians since Russia invaded in February 2022.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Wednesday visited the U.S. Army Garrison in Weisbaden to observe the Abrams tank training and meet with officials there. 

“This doesn’t end when the fight starts. Our work continues because we have to generate more combat power, train more troops and make sure the Ukrainians have what they need,” Austin told a group of U.S. and Ukrainian troops.

Meanwhile, defense officials say the U.S. is observing the recent launch of Ukraine’s counteroffensive, where its military has so far made small but strategic gains in its push to take back Russian occupied territory.

Ukraine is looking for vulnerabilities along a 600-mile front line and reportedly even launching strikes on Russian soil.

Ukrainian Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar said Monday that Ukrainian troops had recaptured a total of seven villages spanning 35 square miles over the past week.

PHOTO: M1 Abrams Tank, Kuwait 2018  

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