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Japanese vs. American tanks
Posted September 30, 2008 - 12:11 PM
Posted September 30, 2008 - 12:21 PM
Modellers do it with models!
Posted September 30, 2008 - 01:40 PM
List of Japanese tanks and armoured vehicles of the WWII period - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
You can go through it, but you won't find anything that the Japanese employed that could take on a Sherman. Some prototypes maybe, but these never reached the battlefield.
Posted September 30, 2008 - 02:20 PM
Posted October 02, 2008 - 12:40 PM
Posted October 08, 2008 - 02:58 AM
Posted October 08, 2008 - 03:32 AM
They certainly used their light tanks to good effect in places like Malaysia and New Guinea, but that probably wasn't to do with their effectiveness against allied tanks, but more the fact that Japanese commanders recognised their usefulness in that theatre. In comparison allied forces (especially early British commanders) were under the imprerssion that the terrain wasn't suitable for tanks. This changed later in the war however.
At the start of the battle Imphal and Kohima the Japanese assumed that the British would be unable to use tanks on the steep jungle-covered hills around Imphal. For the sake of ease of movement and supply, the Japanese were leaving behind most of their field artillery, their chief anti-tank weapon. As a result, the Japanese troops would have very little protection against tanks if these were in fact used against them.
During the battle the 15th Japanese Division encircled Imphal from the north. Its 60 Regiment captured a British supply dump at Kangpokpi and 51 Regiment seized the vital Nunshigum Ridge, which overlooked the main airstrip at Imphal. This was a major threat to British IV Corps, and on April 13 the Indian 5th Division counter-attacked, supported by massed artillery and the M3 Lee tanks of the 3rd Carabiniers. The Japanese regiment had no anti-tank weapons, and their troops were driven from the ridge with heavy casualties.
Also the 7th Armoured Brigade part of the 7th Armoured Division (Desert Rats) was moved to Burma in early 1942 just as the Japanese were pushing the Allies back. The brigade took part in the fighting retreat to India, successfully completed in May just before the monsoons would have cut them off.
So the usefulness of tanks in jungle recognised only by Japanese commanders could not be considered as a rule in my opinion.
Edited by sample, October 08, 2008 - 05:06 AM.
Posted October 09, 2008 - 02:53 AM
Posted October 09, 2008 - 11:04 AM
Fair enough Sample, you have a few examples that put my sweeping statement to shame, but I was always under the impression that allied armour in the far-east was limited in comparison to what the Japanese brought in to effect at the start of their attack. This was particularly apparent in Malayia and Singapore.
I agree with you Morto, i've had the same impression but i think we could not generalize anything related to WW 2; both sides deployed tanks in every theatre of operations; quick victories had the tendency to hide deficiency on winner side and good performance on opposite side; for example it is considered that the idea of multi-tureted tanks was a failure but one action could illustrate a different perspective.
On 16th May 1940 in Stonne during the battle of France, a single B1bis tank (the B1bis "Eure" from Lieutenant Bilotte) pushed in the town itself into the German defences and went back. He attacked a German column of Pz.Rgt.8 and destroyed 2 PzIV, 11 PzIII and 2 Pak36 guns. The first shots destroyed simultaneously the first (with the 47mm gun) and the last tank (with the 75mm gun) of the column. The first German tanks were at less then 50m range. The armor of the B1bis was scattered with 140 impacts, no one penetrated or really damaged the armor. One can see here a kind of small 'Villers Bocage' action and after that Bilotte was nicknamed 'the butcher of Stonne' by his comrades.
Another myth is the poor performance of the Brewster Buffalo fighter plane in WW 2 while a closer examination might reveal a completely different story:
The worst came up in the hands of the american pilots of U.S. Marine Corps, suffering 15 losses out of 25 aircraft at the Battle of Midway; however, the main reasons for the losses included inexperience of USMC pilots, who attempted to enter into a World War I-style dogfight with experienced Japanese aviators, and the fact that the F2As were outnumbered and at a tactical disadvantage.
The RAF, Royal Australian Air Force, and Royal New Zealand Air Force fighter squadrons in Singapore, Malaya and Burma operated Brewster Buffalo with a victory ratio of 1:1 against Japanese planes; however many loses were caused by poor supplies of spare parts, inadequate numbers of support staff, airfields that were difficult to defend against air attack, lack of a clear and coherent command structure, antagonism between RAF and RAAF squadrons and personnel, inexperienced pilots lacking appropriate training, and not to general characteristics of the plane.
In Finland, the Brewster gained a reputation as one of the most successful combat aircraft ever flown by the Finnish Air Force. In service during 1941-1945, Brewsters of Lentolaivue 24 (Fighter Squadron 24) were credited with 477 Soviet aircraft destroyed, against the loss of 19 Brewsters: a victory ratio of 26:1.
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