Why did this Iraqi army brigade swap its American Abrams tanks for Russian ones? | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


Why did this Iraqi army brigade swap its American Abrams tanks for Russian ones?

An Iraqi armored brigade is trading its American M1A1 Abrams tanks for the Russian T-90S main battle tank — possibly for geopolitical reasons.

The swap comes after U.S. officials complained that Abrams tanks ended up in the hands of Iranian-backed militias, and may be an avenue through which Russia is attempting to gain more influence in the region.

"I think the move was at least partly motivated by smoothing over that issue,” said James Phillips, a senior research fellow for Middle Eastern affairs at the Heritage Foundation.

“But also it was a pointed reminder that the [United States] does not have a monopoly on tanks, and that Iraq can get them from Russia, as well,” he added. “This diminishes U.S. leverage and increases Baghdad’s options in the future."

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