The Estonian Defense Ministry added the FGM-148 Javelin weapon system, a one-man portable rocket launcher, to its military's arsenal following the signing of a sales contract during ceremony at the Ministry of Defense building, here, Nov. 18.
The acquisition came after several demonstrations of the weapon system by U.S. forces during Operation Atlantic Resolve and the Estonian military's desire to bolster its anti-tank defense capabilities.
"The embassy has been working with the Estonians, trying to interest them in U.S. defense products, and this is our most successful and largest deal to date," said Jeff Levine, U.S. ambassador to Estonia.
"We consider it significant in several ways," said Levine, a Mossbeach, California, native. "First, it's a new and important capability that the Estonian Defense Forces is acquiring for anti-tank combat, and people who are looking at likely scenarios -- or unfortunate scenarios -- in this region think that an anti-tank capability will be very critical to Estonia's ability to defend itself."
Prior to the ceremony, soldiers from Troop C, 2nd Cavalry Regiment, from Vilseck, Germany, who are currently deployed to Estonia, as part of Operation Atlantic Freedom brought a Javelin weapon system training simulator to demonstrate how the weapon works and its capabilities for all in attendance.
"This deal opens up opportunities for training, an added level of interoperability with both of us using the same equipment, as well as a continuing relationship on this particular system," said Levine.
The U.S. Army Europe-led Atlantic Resolve, a multinational combined-arms exercise involving the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, and host nations, takes place across Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland to enhance multinational interoperability, to strengthen relationships among allied militaries, to contribute to regional stability, and to demonstrate U.S. commitment to NATO.
Source: US Army
Date: Dec 10, 2014