The U.S. Army Security Assistance Command, also known as USASAC, has implemented and completed a case for delivery of 250 Mine Resistant Armor Protected, or MRAP, vehicles to the Iraqi government.
This complicated and monumental task Dec. 23 was achieved in less than 90 days by USASAC and its security assistance enterprise partners.
The MRAPs refurbishment and delivery were in a rapid response to the Iraqi government’s urgent requests and were crucial in getting Iraqi military the supplies they needed in a short turnaround time. These MRAPS will enable Iraqi security forces to win the fight with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, also known as ISIL, and save lives. As the biggest threats to the Iraqi security forces are vehicle-borne bombs, improvised explosive devices, roadside bombs and ISIL, the refurbished MRAPS provide increased protection in all those areas.
“FMS (foreign military sales) is a challenge, especially when dealing with a customer during a conflict in their country,” Wade Preston, a country program manager for Iraq in USASAC’s Central Command, or CENTCOM regional directorate, said. “With great teamwork and constant vigilance throughout the security assistance enterprise, we will continue to provide outstanding support to our international customers in their time of need.”
The USASAC CENTCOM regional directorate’s personnel accelerated coordination, refurbishment and shipment of the MRAPs with assistance from the Tank and Automotive Command, located in Warren, Michigan.
The MRAPs provided to Iraq were designated Excess Defense Articles, or EDA. Because EDA are articles deemed no longer needed by the U.S. military, they can then be transferred to certain eligible FMS countries. This enables the U.S. to improve those countries’ defense capabilities, one of the main objectives of security assistance.
The U.S. also provided transportation and six months of maintenance for the MRAPs, and M162A rifles which are scheduled to be delivered sometime in early 2015.
“These MRAPs provide a crucial boost to the Iraqi Army’s capacity to defeat and deter threats from ISIL in their region,” Preston said.