Armor: January 1, 2000


Saudi Arabia is set to order the last of the LAV 8x8 armored cars for its National Guard. In Saudi Arabia, the Army is comprised of men recruited in the major cities. The National Guard, which is a full-time active duty combat force, is recruited from the rural tribes. The two parallel armies duplicate each other's functions, but also maintain the delicate balance of internal political power. These 130 vehicles are to be fitted with Belgian Cockerill LCTS turrets mounting a 90mm anti-tank cannon. A second order for another 130 is expected to follow. Already on order, and mostly delivered, are 384 standard LAV-25s (identical to the US Marine LAV with a 25mm chaingun and room for a few infantry in back), 111 anti-tank versions with TOW missiles, 47 personnel carriers, 67 recovery vehicles, 182 command versions, 71 ambulances, 34 engineer vehicles, 73 mortar vehicles (with 120mm mortars), and 16 ammunition transporters. --Stephen V Cole


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