Poland receives green light for $15 billion Patriot missile systems buy
Stars and Stripes June 29, 2023
Poland’s weapons-buying spree just keeps on going, with a multibillion-dollar battle command system that will be used to support the country’s Patriot missile defense program poised to become the latest major purchase.
On Wednesday, the U.S. State Department issued a statement announcing initial approval of the $15 billion deal.
The acquisition is part of the program’s second phase and involves an Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System and a wide array of supporting equipment, including 48 Patriot M903 launch stations, hundreds of advanced missiles and assorted launchers and sensors.
“This proposed sale will support the foreign policy goals and national security objectives of the United States by improving the security of a NATO ally that is a force for political stability and economic progress in Europe,” the State Department said in a statement.
In addition, the sale will improve coordination with the U.S. military, since American forces use the same air defense system, the statement said.
The sale, which requires formal congressional approval, comes after several other major weapons purchases by Poland, which over the past several years has become a major force in NATO.
Poland’s push to upgrade its military has intensified over the past year in the wake of Russia’s February 2022 invasion of Ukraine.
Earlier this week, Poland welcomed its first batch of Abrams tanks, which arrived Tuesday. In upcoming months, nearly 400 Abrams tanks will be incorporated into the Polish army.
Apache attack helicopters, High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems and F-35 fighter jets are other major weapons systems that Poland is adding to its arsenal.