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http://www.todayszaman.com/tz-web/yazarDetay.do?haberno=128607

ALE SARIIBRAHIMOGLU [email protected] National
Deceiving the public on arms purchases

I was once again frustrated and dismayed when I read remarks made by a senior Turkish arms procurement official over an overdue Turkish decision to cancel the production of outdated G3 rifles, which users have long complained about.

Murad Bayar, head of the Undersec-retariat for the Defense Industry (SSM), told the Anatolia news agency on Sunday that the G3 rifles have fulfilled their function as they were designed to meet the requirements of regular armies.

Bayar answered a question from the correspondent over the many complaints that have been made about the G3 rifles, however answer was far from satisfactory. "In reality these [G3 rifles] are very effective, but because they are somewhat heavy and their maintenance is slightly difficult, there is a need now to produce new rifles that are lighter and easier to maintain to meet the needs of guerilla warfare. The previous rifles were produced to meet the needs of regular armies in conventional warfare."

If Anatolia news agency's Turkish version of the interview is correct, Bayar also used the word "guerilla," a term that neither the Turkish decision makers nor the media dare use since the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) members are branded terrorists, not guerillas. He did not refer to the PKK when he used the word guerilla, but none the less the word is a taboo in Turkey as it brings to mind the organization's terrorists.

Nevertheless, with his remarks that G3 rifles were designed to meet the requirements of a regular army, i.e. the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK), and that there have been no problems in the usage of those rifles, Bayar has gravely deceived the Turkish public.

I say this mainly because there has been much speculation surrounding rifle production since the decision was made to produce them in 1997. Also, Turkey has been fighting against the PKK since 1984 and the rifles were one of the arms needed in the fight against the terrorists.

Thus in the initial phase of the project the rifles should have been designed to meet the needs of the soldiers, using them both against the terrorists as well as during their international peace keeping missions elsewhere in the world. But this was not the case.

At the center of the controversy was the fact that the Heckler & Koch (H&K, owned by both German and British companies) HK33E rifle, commonly known the G3 rifle in Turkey, was an old model and that the German army itself was using newer HK36 rifles.

Thus, Turkey's choice of HK33 5.56 millimeter rifles to replace the 7.62 millimeter G3 was controversial from the beginning of the practice in 1997.

But a 10-year modernization project went into effect in 1998 amid still more controversy when H&K, owned at the time by Britain's Royal Ordnance, refused to transfer technology for the rifle parts because of the German government's arms ban on Turkey due to concerns that they were used in the fight against the PKK.

Germany's refusal at the time to issue a license for the transfer of technology to the state-owned Machines and Chemical Industries Board's (MKEK's) facilities in Kirikkale for investments to be made for rifle production also caused delays.

Over the past few years, members of the TSK have been divided over whether to continue the production of ageing HK33E assault rifles. After a series of technical problems, in 2003 the TSK reportedly decided to stop production of the HK33E once the number of the weapons reached 80,000, with the aim of looking for new solutions. According to my own knowledge, around 83,000 HK33E 5.56 rifles have been produced thus far.

From the remarks made by Bayar, it is now understood that Turkey has finally decided to stop G3 production and to hold a tender to acquire newer models. But the reasons he cited to replace the G3 rifles with newer models were purely deceiving the public. Instead, he should have had admitted the fact that it was problematic from the very beginning of the rifle program.

The main problem behind Turkey's arms purchases is the absence of civilian democratic supervision. When this democratic right is not exercised by the political authorities and by Parliament, the result is a waste of billions of dollars and sometimes does not even serve the needs of the TSK.
04.12.2007
 

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At the center of the controversy was the fact that the Heckler & Koch (H&K, owned by both German and British companies) HK33E rifle, commonly known the G3 rifle in Turkey, was an old model and that the German army itself was using newer HK36 rifles.
Why do I think that this passage reveals that the author doesn't really know much about HK rifles.

After all, I was not aware the German Army uses the HK36 rifle now. ;)
 

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This article is full of BS and for sure was writtemn by some very socially sensitive socialist journalist. Despite author doesn't know a s...t about firearms he aslo doesn't know a s...t about military. All stuff about "guerrilla", "terrorists" and "PPK" is good example. What guy from military said was: G3 was designed for large scale conflicts of regular armies, while we need something more suitable to use in guerilla-type warfare. As we all know "war on terrorism" is "guerilla-type warfare". So nobody admitted that PPK are guerillas or terrorists. Remark was just about type of military operations conducted.

BTW What Turkey army calls G3 it is licenced HK G3 in 7,62. I had civilian, semi-auto version (MKE T41) and it was well put together in fired straight towards target :D
 

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I love the G36, but I will take a G3 if I am off to battle thank you very much!
 
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