Well - "early" is all in my perspective since I have yet to see any real data on these contract HP pistols for Iraq. The lower serial number is 245 PY 81XXX and the other is 245 PY 96XXX. It would be nice if FN would tell the world how many HPs Iraq purchased under the contract and the serial number range. At this time, with the limited research, it may be unwise to conclude there are 15,000 pistols between these two specimens since we don't know if FN sold the pistols in sequential order or in blocks intermixed with other pistols.
I hope more folks will chime in and report their Iraqi HP serial numbers. Our small sample has a 32,000 spread between the high and low serial numbers. I'm sure some of these HP were consumed in the Iran / Iraq war that lasted from September 1980 to August 1988 and then the two Gulf Wars between Iraq and the Western Coalition - - who knows how many were destroyed in the military conflicts and post-war by the occupying forces.
Charlie - - keep your day job - - if you have one. This thread is about contract Browning HP pistols -- not looted art from WWII or the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
Now - - back to the topic of this thread. Nirvana - you are correct. The Israelis do not waste a single firearm they confiscate from Palestinians or others crossing their borders illegally. After 30 years and three wars, Iraqi contract HPs are scattered across the globe. Cole's Distributing out of Scottsville, KY has brought in more Browning HPs than just about anyone from Israel. The big mistake they made in 2013, that I'm sure they won't make again, was advertising the Iraqi HPs as Egyptian.
Eli - - I apologize to CDI for knowing more about Browning High Powers than their sales staff do and that I paid under $1,000 for an Iraqi contract HP.....that CDI legally imported. Oh, by the way, the last Tariq that came up on Gun Broker sold for $2,800.