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The end of the tank?


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#1    questionmark

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 05:51 PM

Washington Post said:



YORK, PA. —  When an armored vehicle pulled down the statue of Saddam Hussein in an iconic moment of the Iraq War, it triggered a wave of pride here at the BAE Systems plant where that rig was built. The Marines who rolled to glory in it even showed up to pay their regards to the factory workers.

That bond between the machinists and tradesmen supporting the war effort at home and those fighting on the front lines has held tight for generations — as long as the tank has served as a symbol of military might.

Now that representation of U.S. power is rolling into another sort of morass: the emotional debates playing out as Congress, the military and the defense industry adapt to stark new realities in modern warfare and in the nation’s finances.

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#2    Leonardo

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 05:59 PM

The US Army doesn't need new tanks? Are they taking the MIC?

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#3    keithisco

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 06:25 PM

If the US Army says they do not need new Tanks, then they are the folk who really know. However, I am sure there is too much "Pork Barrel" up on the hill for reality to rule.


#4    Valdemar the Great

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 06:58 PM

View Postkeithisco, on 02 February 2014 - 06:25 PM, said:

If the US Army says they do not need new Tanks, then they are the folk who really know. However, I am sure there is too much "Pork Barrel" up on the hill for reality to rule.
Well, if the DoD shares the same level of competence and foresight as the MOD, I'd question that ....

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#5    Valdemar the Great

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 07:02 PM

Anyway, does anyone recall what happened in the 1920s and 30s? We'll never need these weapons of mass destruction like tanks and aircraft again, we can't imagine ever having to fight another war on the same scale as the one we've just had, we can cut the budgets and disband the armo(u)red corps quite happliy ...

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#6    questionmark

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 07:06 PM

View PostColonel Rhubarb, on 02 February 2014 - 07:02 PM, said:

Anyway, does anyone recall what happened in the 1920s and 30s? We'll never need these weapons of mass destruction like tanks and aircraft again, we can't imagine ever having to fight another war on the same scale as the one we've just had, we can cut the budgets and disband the armo(u)red corps quite happliy ...

:innocent:

Give me enough drones and you can keep your tanks.

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#7    Valdemar the Great

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 07:11 PM

View Postquestionmark, on 02 February 2014 - 07:06 PM, said:

Give me enough drones and you can keep your tanks.
A Drone could occupy territory? could support an infantry assault? It could flush out enemies without having to fire a shot just by driving towards them? The instinct when a Drone is droning overhead is just the opposite, to dig in and take cover. It's not just useful for tank-versus-tank combat. The current belief that drones are the solution to everything is very like those in the 1950s who believed that manned aircraft were no longer necessary because Missiles could do everything. Drones are useful for remote assassination while being able to pretend that you're not actually committing acts of war on those you're firing your Missiles at, but they do have their limits.

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#8    questionmark

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 07:15 PM

View PostColonel Rhubarb, on 02 February 2014 - 07:11 PM, said:

A Drone could occupy territory? could support an infantry assault? It could flush out enemies without having to fire a shot just by driving towards them? The instinct when a Drone is droning overhead is just the opposite, to dig in and take cover. It's not just useful for tank-versus-tank combat. The current belief that drones are the solution to everything is very like those in the 1950s who believed that manned aircraft were no longer necessary because Missiles could do everything. Drones are useful for remote assassination while being able to pretend that you're not actually committing acts of war on those you're firing your Missiles at, but they do have their limits.

A kindergarten class can occupy a territory if there is no resistance... besides, occupying territory has proven as expensive and ineffective in modern warfare.

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#9    lightly

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 08:02 PM

in an age of shoulder fired missiles  ... tanks are outdated sitting ducks?      Nowadays.. it seems territory can be entirely subdued if not  "occupied" with an eye in the sky and an air force?

Edited by lightly, 02 February 2014 - 08:05 PM.

Important:  The above may contain errors, inaccuracies, omissions, and other limitations.

#10    questionmark

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 08:04 PM

View Postlightly, on 02 February 2014 - 08:02 PM, said:

in an age of shoulder fired missiles  ... tanks are outdated sitting ducks?

Yep, sitting at 80 Mph...

The real problem is that they don't fit into modern strategies.

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#11    DecoNoir

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 08:09 PM

I can see where they're coming from in terms of trend of most modern wars: counter insurgency in far flung pieces of land. However I don't think this should be used as a yard stick for the trends of future warfare, especially since the U.S. hasn't fought against a large, armored, conventional army in quite some time.

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#12    Kaa-Tzik

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 08:11 PM

While any one major power has tanks, then the others will fear not to. I believe a false impression of modern war has come about because of the absolutely overwhelming air superiority deployed against Iraq, and the continued popular misconception that Soviet era tanks used by Iraq, or any Arab army, are the same as those used by Soviet and then Russian Army. In a war in Europe there would not be this overwhelming air superiority and it will not be possible for tanks to be free to roam about without fear of air attack, as was the case for the US and allies in Iraq. The Soviet era tanks used by all Arab armies are very old export models without (some modified in Syria recently) the laminate armor packs and Kontakt ERA system, and were not issued with full power ammunition. If one army thinks it can survive with essentially missiles fired from any number of systems, then what will they do when confronted with a tank that they no longer have a kinetic energy weapon to use against it, ie a tanks own HV cannon, and this tank may have, in the case of some Russian tanks, the Arena or Shtora anti-missile systems and Nakidka system that western tanks do not. There will, well into the future, be a need for a highly mobile tracked armored vehicle with a kinetic energy and missile firing capability. Essentially a tank, no matter what it may be called or what it looks like.

Edited by Kaa-Tzik, 02 February 2014 - 08:21 PM.


#13    Rafterman

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 08:13 PM

View Postquestionmark, on 02 February 2014 - 07:06 PM, said:



Give me enough drones and you can keep your tanks.

I'm reminded of a quote by Patton that goes something like "you can have the most powerful Air Force in the world, but if one enemy tank commander drinks a cup of coffee in one of your cafes, you've lost the war".

The Pentagon is always fighting the last war as they say.   Remember all of those admirals who wanted more battleships and not those silly aircraft carriers - they barely had any guns FFS.

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#14    Thanato

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 08:55 PM

Yea, the CF Thought the same thing. We where going to replace the Leopard 1C2 with the LAV III (Stryker) Mobile Gun System. Then we saw how we need tanks so we went out and bought 100 Leopard 2A4s and have since upgraded some to 2A6M CAN and the rest to 2A4M CAN versions. The tank is a great mobile gun platform that can do a job that no other vehicle can, absorb fire, intimidate the enemy and provide direct fire support that the smaller 25mm can not compare to. They have proven themselves in COIN warfare, in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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#15    Valdemar the Great

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 09:02 PM

View Postquestionmark, on 02 February 2014 - 07:15 PM, said:

A kindergarten class can occupy a territory if there is no resistance... besides, occupying territory has proven as expensive and ineffective in modern warfare.
And when has airpower alone ever been able to completely wipe out resistance? How much air supremacy did the Coalition of the Willing have in Iraq and the 'Stan? That strategy is only of use if your intention is to just blast those goddam <insert name of current enemy of choice> into the Stone Age and leave them, which isn't a war but is simply terrorism.

Life is a hideous business, and from the background behind what we know of it peer daemoniacal hints of truth which make it sometimes a thousandfold more hideous.

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