Tanks

The Man

Former Staff
Jul 2011
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I would like to see a movie on this battle:





Excellent wiki article on the battle and the entire Kursk campaign. I have read accounts of this battle by both sides, the fighting grew so fierce that tanks were ramming each other and firing at point blank range turret to turret. The accounts I read said this was the biggest tank battle in history, Wiki says one of the biggest<shrug> Maybe one of the Arab/Israeli battles? Battle of the Chinese Farm?

Battle of Prokhorovka - Wikipedia
One of my grandfathers was badly wounded there, Kursk, not sure if this particular battle you mentioned. Burned in his tank. A brave nurse dragged him out of the flaming tank, and carried him out of there on her back, under enemy fire. She'd later be my grandmother :D
 
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Jul 2013
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When was the last major tank battle? Even when it came to Desert Storm, against a military that, on paper, had one of the most fearsome tank forces in the world, tanks ended up mattering hardly at all.... Iraqi tanks were basically just targets for air power. I suppose they have some value when you're doing a hostile occupation and you need to secure a vulnerable supply line or just project scary ground force to deter any direct confrontation. But it's hard to picture scenarios where we get into a major tank war with the Russians.
This was the last great tank battle, AFAIK

The Battle of the Chinese Farm took place during October 15 to October 17, 1973 between the Egyptian Army and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), as part of the Yom Kippur War. It was fought in the Sinai Peninsula, north of the Great Bitter Lake and just east of the Suez Canal, near an Egyptian agricultural research station. The farm was using specialized Japanese-made machinery that had Kanji characters on them, so Israeli military maps labeled the area as 'Chinese Farm'.[1][2] The battle began when the IDF launched Operation Abiray-Lev ("Stouthearted Men"), attempting to establish a corridor to the canal and allow bridges to be laid for a crossing. Accordingly, the Israelis attacked Egyptian forces in and around the Chinese Farm.
Battle of the Chinese Farm - Wikipedia

Another excellent wiki article.

I have table top wargamed both of these battles, the battles are both epic struggles that hung in the balance.
 
Likes: The Man
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This game simulates every division that fought in the war on the Eastern Front, plus all the air units, it takes into account production, technological improvements, logistics and supply, weather, and political events, even leadership. This is a game that will take hours and hours to play through, you wont finish it in one session. A very serious recreation/simulation of the War in the East.
 
Likes: The Man
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The board game version covered a ping pong table, with several thousand pieces and a book full of charts, rules, and randomization tables. A team of four playing one night a week took several months to play through a game..
 
Likes: The Man
Jan 2007
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As a long-time Tank Enthusiast, I must say that you are spot-on.

These days, these behemoths can simply be taken out too easily by Helicopter, Fixed wing aircraft, Artillery, or, shoulder-launched missles.

While they may still have a place on the BATTLEFIELD, they are largely ineffective in cities.

Ironically, the "bigger, badder" tanks have been some wonderful pieces of engineering, but....great victories came from the smaller, faster tanks, that were primarily infantry-support, and Forward Observers, calling in air and artillery strikes.

In World War II:

--The German Panzers (Mostly smaller, lighter vehicles) raged across Europe, when the Luftwaffe held air superiority, and the tanks were used as support/rapid recon.

--The Tiger Tank, perhaps the finest of the Second World War, was a wonderful, but expensive and hard to build vehicle. While it could tear other tanks up, it did not enjoy the victory of it's smaller predecessors, as it did not air support, or, the greater numbers....

--The T-34, perhaps the BEST tank of the War, was a fast, but very well protected vehicle, made in mass quantities. It was not pretty, it had continual mechanical problems, and, it's tanks crews got the tee total shit beat out of them, simply by riding in it (Russian tanks, in the past, have considered the comfort of the crew to be of nil importance.) All that said, it was hell on a battlefield....

--The Sherman. Although considered a "Main" Battle Tank, the Sherman was downright whimpy, compared to most of the German Main Battle Tanks. That did not matter. It was made in ridiculous numbers (Thus parts were interchangeable), was fast, and....American Tank Crews often called in air and artillery strikes, while serving mostly as Infantry support.....

The lesson I get from all of this is that Tank TACTICS are what makes them powerful.

And, I honestly think, that far more important than their armor, is their SPEED. (Thus, today, the Armored Personnell Carriers can fill the "lightning" war role, formerly held by Tanks.....)
It may be better to have a mix of weapons, each better suited to the mission. Kind of the issue with the F35 , a so called do everything plane that is filled with compromises.
 

Tedminator

Former Staff
Jun 2010
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hah fun tank battle between a hero T72 and 3 enemy M60s..


Totally unrealistic (in reality those tanks can't hit shit when shooting while moving), but I do like how the film makers showed the T72's auto loader vs the M60's manual loading.
 
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