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Operation Citadel (July 1943)

Discussion in 'World History' started by joespaniel, Jul 15, 2004.

  1. joespaniel

    joespaniel Unescorted Settler

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    I don't think he was ever a communist. He was always a right wing nut case.

    You might want to check this out:

    http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Holocaust/bormann.html
     
  2. rilnator

    rilnator Emperor

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    Interesting read, its hard to find any info on the man at all. Its amazing the power he weilded from behind the scenes. Also surprised that Hess had actually commited murder. Nice find.
     
  3. blindside

    blindside formerly god

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    Were the Panthers better than the Tiger? Becuase it seemed like the Germans used more Tigers and Panzers, especially against the Americans. I always thought the Panthers were better vs. t34s.
     
  4. privatehudson

    privatehudson The Ultimate Badass

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    Generally a Panther was better than a T34, especially the 76mm armed ones. However, the first Panther mark, ie the D was plauged by problems especially with it's engine and frequently broke down in combat leaving it exposed to being outflanked and knocked out with ease. Also being outnumbered heavily and advancing into the teeth of all those guns the Russians had as well as facing masses of enemy tanks is not good for your panzer unit's health :D

    As for comparisons to the tiger, depends what you prefer really, but I go for the Panther everytime :)
     
  5. sabo

    sabo My Ancestors were Vikings

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    The Panther was probably the best all around Tank of the war, the Tiger was probably the best of the heavy tanks, it's like a rolling fortress, it moves but not too fast.
     
  6. joespaniel

    joespaniel Unescorted Settler

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    The Panther was a great medium tank, but it broke down alot and used alot of gas. The Tiger was a heavy tank, it also broke down alot and used alot of gas. Like many other German vehicles, they were complicated designs. It made them harder to maintain and keep them in the field.

    The T-34 was a US design sold to the Soviets before the war. It was probably the best tank of the war, considering all factors. It was very reliable and easy to fix, and was quite fast. It was more of a match for any German tank until the Panther came out. The later models had better guns and armor, making it able to stand up to the Panthers.

    However, the Soviets used some even better tanks after 1943.

    One thing to keep in mind though, is that tanks are not made to fight other tanks. That's what tank destroyers, rockets and anti-tank guns are for. Tanks are for exploiting breakthroughs. It's a waste to use them otherwise.
     
  7. privatehudson

    privatehudson The Ultimate Badass

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    It's misleading to call it a "US" design in full because the US mainly influenced the tracks, suspension and so on. The revolutionary sloping armour and decent gun were homegrown ideas not seen until then in other country's tanks. Also the tiger was more than able to engage it on a 1-1 basis, and the tiger arrived before the Panther, though it's engine problems and slowness did play against it.

    As for the use of the tank, I would suggest that in WWII the tank was made for engaging the enemy's tanks, or more often than not would be required to do so anyway. American principles followed what you describe, but soon found that there was an urgent need to ensure that the tanks they had could also engage the enemy tanks ;)
     
  8. joespaniel

    joespaniel Unescorted Settler

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    I wasn't counting the Tiger. Not many tanks could stand up to it head to head.

    Good point about the sloped armor.

    Nope, the tank was always an exploitation weapon. It has been since it's conception in WWI. However, as you say, it has had to fight other tanks simply because they are there. I think that's why they came out with the M-26 Pershing, to counter the Tiger.

    But the US made the Sherman for a reason; they had to be brought over an ocean first, then maintained overseas and supplied. If we had built Panther-sized tanks instead, we couldn't have done all that in 1944.
     
  9. privatehudson

    privatehudson The Ultimate Badass

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    My point is not what it was designed for, but what it had to be used for. In the end, battlefield experience proved that relying on SPGs and A/T guns to take on enemy armour simply was not practical in any way shape or form, tanks had to have some way of engaging their opposite number on the spoty when they ran into them, not call upon other units further away to engage the enemy. In part that principle fell down because to use the tank purely for exploitation requires an absence of enemy armour almost entirely, or a well defined and workable combined arms system. In the fluid battles of WWII, it proved that there simply was not the time to swap and change formations and vehicle types to deal with every problem as it arrived.

    The allies did a lot of things to fight that, the British brought out the Firefly which was highly effective against both Panther and Tiger, and on a lucky day even the King Tiger, assuming it never gave the enemy time to fire back! The Americans upgunned their shermans to 76mm where possible, the British brought out the Comet (a British panther in many ways) and so on culminating in the Pershing and Centurion. Whilst it's understandable to use the Shermans, the point remains that the americans soon realised that TDs for taking on tanks was a nice theory, but rarely was it the norm in campaigns.
     
  10. joespaniel

    joespaniel Unescorted Settler

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    I was agreeing with you. :lol:

    Today, nearly all types of combat forces are multi-role. Tanks have high-explosive and anti-tank rounds, Bradleys have missles, artillery has copperheads.... the list goes on and on.
     
  11. Serutan

    Serutan Eatibus Anythingibus

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    The only part of the T-34 of US design was the Christie suspension
    system, which was revolutionary. Interestingly, the US Army wasn't
    interested in the Christie suspension, because of the NIH (Not Invented Here)
    syndrome.
     
  12. Ace

    Ace Emperor

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    Your right. The US army ordanance dept. had a big NIH regarding it.

    The main reason the US went with the Sherman tank was that, of all people, Gen. Patton made a mistake in 1942! As the army's tank expert, he decided that the Sherman was good enough, so the army committed to mass producing it. Unfortunately, it didn't stand up the Mk IVs, Panthers, or Tigers very well. The Pershing did, but by the time it reached the fighting troops, the war was over. The large numbers of Shermans did win the war for the allies, but it was rather tough on the troops who manned it! In retrospect, I believe it would have been wiser to push the Pershing into production faster.

    Tank destroyers and assault guns are just a "poor man's" substitute for a tank. The US created tank destroyers because they thought AT units were necessary and the Germans created assault guns because they needed replacements, fast, for the depleted panzer divisions in Russia. Taking obsolete Mk I, II, and IIIs and converting them to assault guns was a quick way to get more, effective, units in the divisions, but, in the long run, was not a real substitue for a true tank. Althrough one can hardly call a Jadgtiger anything but extremely dangerous....
     
  13. privatehudson

    privatehudson The Ultimate Badass

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    And I was expanding on your comments ;)
     
  14. nonconformist

    nonconformist Miserable

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    It depended on army doctrine, didn't it?

    The A,mericans used their tanks as infantry support weapons-to take out strongpoints, blow holes in houses and use their 50 cals. They were also used as forward observation. Aircraft and artillery were used to take care of armour, or tank destroyers were to wait for tanks and ambush them, before escaping.
    This only really changed with the Sherman 76mm and Pershing-the 76mm Sherman was IIRC first not issued with HE shells, meaning there always had to be 75mms.

    Germans, however, with a dwindling Luftwaffe, and being primarily on defence, used their tanks in a more antitank role, using the MG42s and such, as well as armoured cars for the infantry.
     

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