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Pakistan Is Selling This New Heavy Machine Gun

April 21, 2019

The Chinese Type 85 or W85 heavy machine gun has proliferated across the Middle East and Africa. It now seems like a derivative is manufactured by Pakistan’s state-owned ordnance plant.

The Pakistan Ordnance Factories (POF) just added another weapon to its growing catalog. For some years now a rare 12.7x108mm machine gun that isn’t a DShK was displayed whenever the POF exhibited its small arms at the biennial IDEAS. This turned out to be the HMG PK-16, a heavy machine gun on a collapsible tripod resembling the Chinese Type 85 or W85 that’s a favorite among militias and rebel groups across the Middle East.

The HMG PK-16 recently joined the POF’s website with a chart listing its characteristics. Its name might suggest its debut in the year 2016.

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Armored Cars: Norinco VP11

April 13, 2019

Via Chinese media.

One of the reasons why China has cemented its place as the world’s fifth largest arms exporter is cost-effectiveness. Whether it’s a Type 56 assault rifle or a diesel-electric submarine, the technology of its military products is familiar and the price isn’t exorbitant. The same applies to Norinco’s VP11 MRAP whose features are tailored for armies saddled with meager budgets. Clearly applying the timeless lessons of South African protected trucks–the monocoque hull and bulging side panels–the VP11 is unique for being smaller than usual. Indeed, the VP11’s lack of hefty proportions is alarming in a niche where bigger is often better.

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The Pakistan Army Loves This Giant Tracked Howitzer

April 10, 2019

Via ISPR/Pakistan media.

The annual Pakistan Day military parade held on March 23 is one of the few public occasions where the country’s hard power is open to scrutiny. A mainstay in each event is a distinctive self-propelled gun whose appearance hearkens to another era. Once upon a time, immense howitzers were deemed by the Cold War’s main belligerents as convenient tools for launching tactical nuclear weapons. They were also great for softening the enemy before or during battle.

The M110 entered service in 1963 as the largest in the US Army’s selection of tracked self-propelled howitzers. These mobile artillery platforms spanned the M107; the lightweight M108; the longevity blessed M109; and the eight-inch behemoth the M110.

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IDEF 2019 Is Going To Be Massive

April 8, 2019

Via Wikimedia Commons.

The 14th installment of the International Defense Industry Fair or IDEF 2019 will span five days, from April 30 until May 3, in Istanbul’s Tuyap Fair Convention and Congress Center. Organized with the help of the defense ministry and the Turkish Armed Forces Foundation, IDEF 2019 promises to overshadow similar events in Eastern Europe and the Middle East for its dazzling scale. More than a thousand exhibitors are registered and visitor turnout is expected to surpass the 65,782 people who showed up for IDEF 2017.

21st Century Asian Arms Race (21AAR) is a media partner for IDEF 2019.

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Is The Indian Tejas LCA Ready For Export?

April 6, 2019

A certified darling of India’s press, the Tejas Mk I garnered serious publicity during the recent Langkawi International Maritime & Aerospace Exhibition or LIMA 2019. The world famous air show takes place very two years and draws industry leaders and immense crowds eager to catch the acrobatics performs by various fighter jets. On March 25, coinciding with the completion of the 16th Tejas Mk I, Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) announced two air force Tejas’ were joining LIMA 2019.

Never mind if India’s defense ministry is at pains seeking a viable multirole fighter. HAL is almost halfway done with the 40 Tejas Mk I’s ordered by the Indian Air Force (IAF) and by the 2020s a further 250 upgraded Tejas Mk II’s could begin production. But what about exports?

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The Philippines Is Still Losing Territory To China

April 5, 2019

Via Wikimedia Commons.

The Department of National Defense‘s (DND) latest press release spared few words on the situation in the Spratly Islands but emphasized the Philippines’ commitment to its territory. “The Western Command of the AFP has been continuously monitoring the waters around Pag-asa (or Thitu Island) and they are aware of the presence of Chinese vessels and their activities,” it read.

Without assigning blame to China, the DND cautioned “other countries and their vessels to do the same…in international waters.” Pag-asa Island is a small airbase with a dock that serves as the Philippines’ main outpost in the Spratlys, whose expanse falls under the country’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

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India Should Worry About The Nasr Ballistic Missile

April 4, 2019

Via ISPR / Pakistan media.

Despite extensive publicity, not enough attention was given to this year’s Pakistan Day parade where an awesome display of ballistic missiles rolled by Prime Minister Imran Khan’s pavilion. A genuine surprise at the March 23 event were two 8×8 trucks that serve as the launch vehicles for the Nasr. After years of laborious testing it now appears the army have added to their growing arsenal of precision weapons. When these are shown in high profile national events it’s taken as a sure sign of entering service. But the Nasr, also referred to as the Hatf-9, is atypical.

Unlike the enormous Shaheens carried on trailers, the Nasrs can be mistaken for rocket artillery, which they are.

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These Five Countries Are World Leaders In Cyber Espionage

April 3, 2019

Via Wikimedia Commons.

Last week’s Protect 2019 conference featured lectures on malicious cyber activities targeting enterprises and governments alike. The presentation delivered by Roland Javines Ong shared data from FireEye’s Threat Intelligence files that revealed a handful of countries are responsible for major instances of cyber espionage in the previous year. It isn’t a surprise that North Korea lives up to its reputation by menacing cryptocurrency exchanges and stealing other people’s money.

But FireEye’s insights also showed a new Cold War is ongoing and its fault lines are no longer ideological but technological. More than ever before, these hostile governments are harming their enemies in cyberspace to secure victory. But one particular country listed below wasn’t a usual suspect…until now.

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Taiwan Is Really Mad At Chinese Fighter Jets

April 2, 2019

A PLAAF J-11B. Via China Military Online.

The prickly island nation went on a diplomatic offensive this week after two PLAAF fighters, identified as J-11’s by the defense ministry, breached the “median line” in the Taiwan Strait. Rather than let it pass, the incident was condemned by Taipei and its allies Japan and the US. The two J-11’s were reportedly tailed by unspecified Taiwanese fighters until they left the area on Sunday morning. Since then, no Chinese military activity has taken place. While the PLAAF makes a routine of poking around Taiwan’s airspace, the sudden backlash after this weekend’s tense encounter is a clear sign of Taipei’s defiance.

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Everything You Need To Know About VIDSE 2020

April 1, 2019

Billed as “the first tri-service defense and security exhibition” in the Southeast Asian country, VIDSE is organized by Clarion Events, who are behind DSEI and its offshoots. This brave foray into Southeast Asia promises an arms show where a lot of big names in global military industry are joining. VIDSE 2020 is taking place at the National Convention Center in Hanoi from March 4 to 6. There will be strong participation by the armed forces, law enforcement, and other officials in government agencies and the organizer promises more than 120 exhibitors. 21st Century Asian Arms Race (21AAR) is a media partner for VIDSE 2020.

Despite Vietnam’s strategic geography and a robust defense budget, the rising star in ASEAN hasn’t attracted a major arms show for a long time. Although smaller events involving the military did take place before, these were focused on disaster response and emergency services. A few extra details about VIDSE 2020 explained below.

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The Dragoon 2 ASV Can Perform Any Job On The Battlefield

March 31, 2019

The SDLE Dragoon 2.

Wheeled armored vehicles are enjoying a heyday in Europe and the Middle East because of gray zone warfare. There’s now an abundance of upgrades and countermeasures for improving their performance, making wheeled APCs as reliable as–if not better than–their tracked counterparts a generation ago. One fine example is the Dragoon 2 ASV manufactured by Star Defense Logistics & Engineering (SDLE) whose colorful lineage lends to its appeal for militaries on a tight budget.

As a proven combat and security vehicle, the Dragoon 2 ASV even surpasses the Oshkosh JLTV and other current generation tactical 4x4s in some aspects.

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Shocking! Iran Makes A Lot Of Killer SAMs

March 30, 2019

Via Iranian media.

Not for lack of exposure, but Iran’s vast domestic military industries have never been sufficiently acknowledged by the countries sworn to curb its ambitions. This is a remarkable lapse since the extent of military-industrial production in the Islamic Republic surpasses its neighbors and is impervious to economic pressure. Although some locally made weapons are of dubious quality, constant investment in anti-aircraft systems to deter a possible air campaign has given Tehran a decisive edge over its foes.

With sanctions keeping foreign arms manufacturers from participating in Iranian exhibitions, the publicity surrounding Eghtedar 40 in February served as a rare occasion to measure just how large Iran’s conventional arsenal is. Indeed, when it comes to missile technology, Iran does rival its nemesis Israel.

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