PlayStation Controller Used to Operate Tank Built by Syrian Rebels

By Jack Phillips
Epoch Times Staff
Created: December 10, 2012 Last Updated: December 11, 2012
Related articles: World » Middle East
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Syrian rebels constructed their own armored vehicle to combat Syrian soldiers, but it has one unusual feature: it’s operated by a PlayStation controller.

Video footage obtained by Russian state broadcaster RT shows the rebels driving around in a car chassis surrounded by what appears to be scrap metal plates, steering the device with the PlayStation controller.

The vehicle was called the Sham II, named after the term used for ancient Syria, reported AFP. The rebels described the 15-foot-long car as “100 percent made in Syria.”

The design took around a “month of work,” designer Mahmud Abud from the Al-Ansar brigade near Aleppo in northwestern Syria told AFP.

There is a mounted 7.62 mm machine gun on the top of the armored car. The car has five cameras, which are used to steer the vehicle and to control the machine gun. The vehicle has no windows in order to protect the driver and the gunner.

While the vehicle might not stand up well against heavy artillery or standard Syrian tanks, it is still an achievement for the rebels in the now 20-month-long conflict that has left an estimated 40,000 people dead.

“This is my brother, a trained engineer, who got the idea. We got a car, left its diesel motor on the chassis and built the engine,” Abud told AFP. He added, “Not including from the gun, the vehicle costs about $10,000.”

There has already been a Sham I vehicle, but it did not protect the driver and gunner from incoming enemy fire.

As the Syrian conflict turned from a popular uprising into a civil war, there have been numerous videos uploaded by rebels showing homemade weapons, including one-shot guns made out of sprinkler equipment. Rebels have also frequently used improvised explosive devices.

On Monday, it was reported by CNN that the Syrian rebel group Jabhat al-Nusra will be the latest group designated by the U.S. State Department as a terrorist organization because of its ties to al-Qaeda. There are a number of hardline Islamist groups that have entered Syria to fight against President Bashar al-Assad’s forces.

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