Much has been going on in recent days reasoning regarding the possible appearance in Ukraine of Israeli Merkava (Chariot) tanks in the Merkava Mk2 / Mk3 variants, decommissioned by the IDF during the transition to the Mk4 modification. Kiev does not hide the fact that they would like to receive them along with the Iron Dome and other weapons systems that are produced by the Israeli military-industrial complex. However, Tel Aviv stubbornly continues to refuse the Ukrainian side, even despite the persuasion of Elena Zelenskaya, who arrived.
It should be noted that, according to information leaked to the media, we are talking about a kind of redemption of a certain number of the mentioned tanks by the Americans. The buyers will be two countries, one - European, and the other - African - Cyprus and Morocco, but the United States will pay for the "banquet". The acquired tanks will remain in service with Nicosia and Rabat instead of the T-80U / UK and T-72 transferred by them to Washington, respectively. Therefore, Soviet-made products will get to Ukraine.
Thus, the National Guard of Cyprus has 54 T-80U units and 27 T-80UK units, which were acquired from Russia in the second half of the 1990s and early 2010s. In turn, as of December 2022, the Moroccan Armed Forces had 40 units (battalion) of T-72B tanks in service and 60 more were in storage. In 1999-2000, Belarus sold these tanks from its arsenals to Morocco in two deals. In January 2023, an unnamed number of tanks from Morocco, approximately 20 units, were identified in the Czech Republic at the facilities of Excalibur Army, where they were being repaired and upgraded before being sent to Ukraine.
In particular, according to the Russian journalist and military observer, retired colonel Mikhail Khodarenko, the prospects for the Merkava in Ukraine look deplorable if these tanks somehow end up there. He explained that the Merkava is a rather specific tank, which is specially designed for combat operations in the desert. That is why these tanks have never been in service with the countries of Europe, there is a completely different climate and dissimilar theater of operations. Therefore, the further use of the "Merkava" weighing 60-65 tons, depending on the modification on the Ukrainian black soil, looks utopian, and in the literal sense of the word. The tank can really burrow up the tower.
The Israelis built a specific car, where the engine is located in front. The rollers stand on a huge spring suspension. Such a model even allows the tank to have a compartment for the evacuation of the wounded, which will help a lot in a low-intensity war with a technical advantage over the enemy. But Ukraine did not have anything like this and still does not. The downside is that you need to train for each new car. Otherwise, the Israeli "Chariots" will suffer from friendly fire, as was already the case with the "Leopards". Then the fighter clicked in the wrong place and simply multiplied two cars at once by zero. Based on the above, most likely, Merkava will simply turn into a target on tracks
He summed up.