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German-Made Leopard Tanks Bear The Brunt of Russian Forces’ “Rejuvenation” in Ukraine”

In addition to the Leopard tanks, the Russian Ministry of Defense also alleged that 13 armored vehicles, 55 various vehicles, "Grad" multiple rocket launcher systems, and 47 artillery units—22 of which were supplied by foreign countries—were destroyed during this period.

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(DEFENCE SECURITY ASIA) — During the week of May 11 to 17, Russian military claimed to have successfully destroyed five Leopard 2A1 tanks, manufactured by the German company Krauss-Maffei but donated to the Ukrainian Armed Forces to help the Eastern Europe country in its armed conflict with Russia.

In addition to the Leopard tanks, the Russian Ministry of Defense also alleged that 13 armored vehicles, 55 various vehicles, “Grad” multiple rocket launcher systems, and 47 artillery units—22 of which were supplied by foreign countries—were destroyed during this period.

Moreover, four Mi-24 helicopters and 40 unmanned boats belonging to the Ukrainian military were reportedly destroyed by Russia in the same timeframe.

Among the foreign-supplied armored vehicles to Ukraine, the Leopard tanks have been the most frequently supplied to Kyiv compared to other models such as the American-made Abrams and the British-made Challengers.

Since last year, countries such as Germany and several other European nations have supplied between 100-200 Leopard tanks to Ukraine for use in a spring counteroffensive against Russian positions.

Leopard
“Russian Soldiers Pose in Front of Captured Leopard 2A6 Tank”
Leopard
Line of Leopard tanks and Bradley armoured infantry fighting vehicle were destroyed in Zaphorizia, southern Ukraine.

 

Although the Ukrainian counteroffensive in 2023 initially started well, it faced increasingly formidable opposition from Russian forces who began altering their tactics and strategies.

These changes in strategy and tactics by the Russian forces led to the destruction of many of the Ukrainian tanks that had been supplied by donor countries like Germany, other European nations, the United States, and Britain.

However, to date, no one knows exactly how many Leopard tanks have been destroyed by Russia.

Nevertheless, Russian President Vladimir Putin has reportedly stated to his country’s war correspondents that Ukraine has lost more than 160 tanks supplied by foreign countries.

Given the high volume of Leopard tanks supplied to Ukraine, it is logical to conclude that many of the tanks destroyed by Russia were Leopard models.

Regarding the Abrams tanks, the Russian military stated that of the 31 American-made tanks supplied to Ukraine, more than five of the tanks have been destroyed by Russian forces.

Abrams
A charred M1A1 Abrams main battle tank being transported to Moscow to participate in an exhibition at Victory Park.

 

 As a result of the destruction of five Abrams tanks, the United States has reportedly “withdrawn” these tanks from the Ukrainian battlefield, likely in an effort to “preserve its reputation.”

Following the destruction experienced by Leopard tanks supplied by Germany and other European countries, Ukraine’s Deputy Foreign Minister Andii Melnyk has requested that Kiev be supplied with more Leopard tanks, including the latest variant, the Leopard 2A6.

 However, the newest Leopard 2A6 variant supplied to Ukraine has met the same fate.

The Russian military reported capturing the most powerful tank in the Ukrainian arsenal, the German-made Leopard 2A6, after intense fighting in Avdiivka, Ukraine, last April.

It is believed that Ukraine possesses 21 Leopard 2A6 tanks, with 18 of these tanks developed by the companies Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall being donated by Germany, while the remainder were provided by Portugal.

However, most of these Leopard 2A6 tanks donated to the Ukrainian military could not be used after failing to be properly maintained and remained inoperable as claimed by a senior German politician last January.

Abrams
An Abrams tank caught fire after being struck by a Lancet kamikaze drone and an RPG from Russian forces.

 

According to Russian military sources, after capturing and removing the tank from the combat area, Russian forces transported the tank and sent it to Moscow, possibly for research purposes.

The Leopard 2A6 was successfully captured after a Russian platoon executed an ambush that caused the Ukrainian tank crew to abandon the German-made vehicle.

The Leopard 2A6 represents an upgrade from the Leopard 2A5, incorporating enhanced armor protection, firepower, and electronic warfare capabilities.

The tank measures 9.97 meters in length and weighs 62.3 tons, making it one of the heaviest main battle tanks ever deployed, with an engine power of 1,500 horsepower.

Capable of speeds up to 75 km/h and with an operational range of 500 km, it is equipped with a Rheinmetall 120 mm L/55 cannon, allowing it to fire all standard NATO ammunition types, including APFSDS, HEAT, and multi-purpose shells.

The Leopard 2A6 also features dual 7.62 mm MG3A1 machine guns and an advanced fire control system including a laser rangefinder, thermal imaging, and a ballistic computer. — DSA

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