CNN Security Clearance http://security.blogs.cnn.com/2012/10/09/army-to-congress-thanks-but-no-tanks/?hpt=hp_c1
If the U.S. pauses tank production and refurbishment it will hurt the nation’s industrial economy, lawmakers say. “The combat vehicle industrial base is a unique asset that consists of hundreds of public and private facilities across the United States,” the letter said. The outlook for selling Abrams tanks to other nations appears “stronger than prior years,” the letter said. But those sales would be “inadequate to sustain the industrial base and in some cases uncertain. In light of this, modest and continued Abrams production for the Army is necessary to protect the industrial base.” Lima, Ohio, is a long way from this dusty tank parking lot. The tiny town in the northwestern part of the Buckeye State is where defense manufacturing heavyweight General Dynamics makes these 60-plus-ton behemoths. The tanks create 16,000 jobs and involve 882 suppliers, says Kendell Pease, the company’s vice-president of government relations and communications. That job figure includes ancillary positions like gas station workers who fill up employees’ cars coming and going to the plant.