Intanto che da noi si fa l’ennesimo punto della situazione, si scrivono relazioni, si fanno simposi, udienze e si illustano opinioni più o meno inutili, i canadesi varano un immediato acquisto di nuovissimi carri arnati Leopard :
OTTAWA — The federal government is proceeding with the lease of some of the most modern Leopard tanks on the market as it boosts its equipment in Afghanistan. Defence sources told CanWest News Service that Ottawa will lease 20 A6M tanks from Germany. The tanks, which have improved protection against landmines and other enemy weapons, could be shipped to Afghanistan direct from Germany, sources said. In addition, the new Leopards are air conditioned so they could operate in Afghanistan’s stifling summer heat. Canada’s older Leopard tanks now in Kandahar do not have air conditioning and there have been concerns the heat could limit their usefulness on the battlefield. Temperatures inside the vehicles could soar beyond 60 C. The lease was approved last week by the cabinet priorities and planning committee. Defence Minister Gordon O’Connor wasn’t releasing details about the Leopard tank lease Tuesday, but he did say the tanks were a necessity for the Afghan mission.
"Our experience in Afghanistan has proven we need main battle tanks," he said. "It’s really to offer security to our soldiers."
O’Connor suggested the decrease in the number of Canadian casualties in the last six months was due to more use of heavier armoured vehicles, including the tanks. Over the last year there has been a major about-face in the Canadian military’s view of the usefulness of tanks. The Leopards were originally scheduled to be destroyed or sold off, but the army put a halt to that program. It sent the Leopards to Afghanistan in the fall and began its search for newer tanks to purchase or lease.
Ad avercelo un ministro della difesa come questo ed un governo che si preoccupa della sopravvivenza dei suoi soldati!