Saturday, January 21, 2012
La Segunda reported. Colombia has inquired into buying 60 tanks and sent technical teams to evaluate the equipment in October and December. Undersecretary of Defense Oscar Izurieta downplayed the possible deal, but confirmed Colombia is interested in acquiring some Leopards. There's more than just a transfer of tanks: Colombia has asked Chile for assistance in equipping and maintaining armored forces, La Segunda noted. As a quid pro quo, Chile's Army asked its Colombian counterparts for training on helicopter warfare in day and night conditions -- something in which Colombia has extensive experience after its long war against FARC. Chile plans to retire most if not all its Leopard 1V tanks, having equipped its front-line battalions with the more capable Leopard 2.Chile acquired the Leopard 1V tanks from surplus inventories in Holland and Germany. Most arrived in 1999. Reports that Chile would sell some Leopard 1V tanks to Ecuador never materialized.
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
|British troops advance on the Falklands, 1982|
Monday, January 16, 2012
Seaforth World Naval Review has been released, and it includes a chapter on Chile's Navy written by the publisher of this blog. Thus, you see here a gratuitous promotion about this yearbook. World Naval Review "has rapidly established a reputation as an authoritative but affordable summary of all that has happened in the naval world in the previous twelve months," says the book's back cover. "It combines the standing features of regional surveys with one-off major articles on noteworthy new ships and other important developments." My chapter on the Chilean Navy details the modernization that started with Chile's purchase of two Scorpene submarines in 1997, to the refurbishment of the principal surface ships, to the recovery from the 2010 earthquake and the current upgrade of naval aviation and marine forces. It also discusses the looming changes in military budgeting and its impact on the Navy. The 2012 edition of this hardcover includes an analysis of today's Royal Navy, British offshore patrol vessels, plus chapters on sonar technology and naval aviation.
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Police in the volatile Araucania region received gunfire in a series of attacks that have escalated in the past several days. In the most serious attack, two officers were hurt by shotgun pellets during a confrontation with masked assailants Jan. 10. Earlier, a police vehicle and another carrying journalists also were hit by gunfire. In late December, an officer was shot in the arm as he escorted a logging company truck. Meanwhile, Mapuche leaders denounced police after a member of Carabineros scuffled with a woman holding a baby and aimed his weapon at her. The incident, captured on video, gave protesters evidence of excessive force Mapuches have been complaining about. Arson attacks have occurred in recent months too, as the conflict over ancestral lands shows no sign of abating. But it has not disintegrated into all-out chaos. Talks between government and Mapuche leaders continue, and the violence remains largely contained to certain hot spots. Still, it's a security problem Chile's leaders have yet to get under control.