Winning: MRAP Orders Cut


December 3, 2007: A sure sign of peace breaking out in Iraq is the U.S. Marine Corps decision to reduce, by about a third, the number (3,700) of MRAP (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) vehicles it planned to buy. This is because the use of roadside bombs and mines by Iraqi terrorists has sharply declined in the last few months. The marines also see little use for the MRAPs elsewhere. The MRAPs are too heavy for amphibious or airborne operations, and are difficult to carry on amphibious ships.

The U.S. Army had earlier decided buy a fleet of 17,700 MRAPs. There are already over two thousand of these vehicles in Iraq, and the army is delivering about a thousand in the next month. If the low casualties continue into early next year, the army will probably reduce its orders as well. The MRAPs are expensive (half a million to a million bucks each) and real gas hogs (as they weigh over ten tons.)


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