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Syrian Rebels Request Toyota Hilux Pickups

A funny thing happened with the U.S. State Department started sending non-lethal aid to Syrian rebels. The rebels requested 43 Toyota Hilux pickups. The Toyota Tacoma cousin is viewed as a significant piece of their battle plan.

Syrian Rebels Request Toyota Hilux Pickups

Syrian rebels reportedly put the Toyota Hilux on their wish list. That speaks volumes to the quality of the truck.

We have seen the Toyota Hilux used on various battlefields overseas with all sorts of groups like the Taliban using them. The pickup is versatile and really hard to break (just ask the guys at Top Gear). We haven’t, though, heard of rebels asking for them. The trucks were apparently on the Free Syrian Army’s wish list according to a Public Radio International story.

A Washington-based advisor to the Syrian National Coalition, Oubai Shahbander says it makes a lot of sense.

“Specific equipment like the Toyota Hiluxes are what we refer to as force enablers for the moderate opposition forces on the ground,” he adds. Shahbander says the US-supplied pickups will be delivering troops and supplies into battle. Some of the fleet will even become battlefield weapons.

“You can absolutely expect for many of those trucks to be mounted with crew-served machine guns or other type of equipment, military equipment, that the opposition forces have access to. I mean, that’s one of the reasons why the Toyota Hilux is such an important force multiplier, because it could be used both for humanitarian purposes and for operational purposes as well.”

The truck has been seen throughout the world on war zones because the rebels are figuring out great ways to use them.

“They perfected very fast-moving maneuver warfare, and they did it with Hilux trucks,” BBC Kabul Correspondent David Loyn said. “The Jane’s Defense Weekly analysis of the seizure of Kabul in 1996 was that it was a textbook operation, from three sides, a coordinated piece of warfare using these Hilux trucks as very fast-moving troop-moving vehicles.”

Loyn goes further to rank the Hilux as one of the most significant pieces of military equipment. Yes, the truck.

“You have seen in many wars in the past, a sort of symbolic weapon: the longbow at Agincourt, the Huey helicopter in Vietnam and, I think, the Hilux truck in Afghanistan in the hands of the Taliban was [as] significant and iconic a weapon as those.”

We aren’t sure how Toyota could use those statements in their marketing plan, but if the rebels trust it to take a beating and survive, shouldn’t you?

Now, if only we could get Toyota to bring the Hilux to the U.S. That would be a significant feat as well.