Uncover What’s Hidden: Strategic Moves by French Military in Estonia

Reinforcing the French assets in Estonia under 's Lynx mission, Griffon multi-role armored vehicles (VMBR) have been deployed. Having previously served in Sahel for Operation Barkhane, these vehicles are part of the .

Getting to Estonia

The journey to Estonia was marked by the arrival of at least six Jaguar armored reconnaissance and combat vehicles, courtesy of the French Foreign Legion's 1st Cavalry Regiment (1ER REC). Having travelled across five countries and covered 3000 km by railway, these Jaguars now mark the strategic deployment to NATO's Eastern flank.

The Jaguar’s First Operational Engagement

Notably, unlike the Griffon, the Jaguar hasn't experienced the Sahel climate. The first samples were delivered to 1ER REC only after the French forces completed their withdrawal from Mali. It is worth noting that the deployment in Estonia marks Jaguar's first operational engagement abroad, participating in the Spring Storm exercise.

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Is it Too Soon?

Some might argue the deployment is premature. The Jaguar is still undergoing integration by the French Armored Cavalry (ABC) and has not been declared operational. Even General Pierre Schill, Chief of Staff, acknowledged in May 2023 that the Jaguar is not fully operational and requires adjustments. A new standard Jaguar is expected by mid-2024.

Training with Jaguar

The Saumur Cavalry School recently received its first Jaguars. These vehicles will be used to train French and Belgian students. The Jaguar, successor to AMX-10RC, is equipped with a 40 mm telescopic cannon, a 7.62 mm remotely operated machine gun, and Akeron MP missiles.

Jaguar’s Specs

The Jaguar weighs around 25 tons and is air-transportable. It has a range of 800 km and can reach speeds of 90 km/h. Operated by a driver, gunner, and vehicle commander, the vehicle is fitted with SCORPION program's common electronics. Yet to be implemented in delivered models, the vehicle can be fitted with Optrolead's PASEO sight to enable shooting beyond a direct line of sight.

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Versatility and Innovation

The Jaguar is highly versatile and heavily armed. It is a six-wheel drive, rear-steering vehicle, well-suited for urban or mountainous combat. Equipped with innovative technology in equipment and sensors, the Jaguar stands as a testament to contemporary military innovation.

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