Minichamps MIN350011005 German Kampfpanzer Leopard 2A4 Main Battle Tank - Kosovo Force (KFOR) Multinational Task Force South (Prizren), Kosovo, 2003 (1:35 Scale)
"In Kosovo, we're all working to establish a functional civil society. This is based on the rule of law. The bottom line is that you need well-trained, professional police officers in order to enforce laws and maintain the peace."
- Retired U.S. Marine Lieutenant Colonel Steve Bennett, discussing NATO's involvement in Kosovo, October 17, 2002
The Leopard 2 was an offshoot of the MBT-70 -- a cancelled joint development project between the USA and West Germany undertaken in the late 1960s. Even though the US had withdrawn from the project, the West Germans, under the auspices of Krauss-Maffei, continued research and development on the renamed Leopard 2 project. In 1977, the first production vehicles were delivered and exported to the smaller Dutch Army while the West German Bundeswehr waited a couple of years before it too was equipped with the powerful new main battle tank. The Leopard 2 is outfitted with a laser rangefinder, thermal-imaging equipment, and nuclear, biological and chemical defense system (NBC), and can conduct shallow amphibious operations. Its fire control system is unusual because the cartridge cases are combustible, which can lead to internal fires. The Leopard 2 has a 30% better power-to-weight ratio than the Leopard I, which results in increased cross-country mobility and a higher survivability rate on the battlefield.
Now Minichamps has created a gorgeous 1:35 scale diecast replica of the all-powerful Leopard 2A4 main battle tank. This stunning recreation features a rotating turret, elevating gun, working suspension, and treads that are made of flexible metal links! This particular 2A4 main battle tank served with the KFOR Multi-National Brigade in Kosovo during 2003.
Length: 10.5 inches
Width: 3.75 inches
Height: 2.75 inches
Release Date: January 2010
Historical Account: "Beyond the Borders" - The Kosovo Force (KFOR) is a NATO-led international force responsible for establishing a safe and secure environment in Kosovo, the self-proclaimed, independent and partially recognized landlocked country in the Balkans, which has been under UN administration since 1999.
KFOR entered Kosovo on June 12th, 1999, under a United Nations mandate, two days after the adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 1244.
At the time of UN Security Council Resolution 1244, Kosovo was facing a grave humanitarian crisis, with military and paramilitary forces from the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) and the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in daily engagement. Ethnic tensions were at their highest and the death toll had reached a historic high. Nearly one million people had fled Kosovo as refugees.
Since the establishment of the United Nations Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) in 1999, according to some international organizations Kosovo has become a major destination country for women and young girls trafficked into forced prostitution. According to Amnesty International, most of women are trafficked from Moldova, Romania, Bulgaria and Ukraine. As of 2007, KFOR consisted of approximately 16,000 troops.
After the 2008 Kosovo declaration of independence, the commander of NATO forces in Kosovo said on February 20th, 2008, that he did not plan to step up security in the tense north despite violent attacks by Kosovo Serbs, which forced the temporary closure of two boundary crossings between Kosovo and Serbia.