NATO tanks in Europe during the Cold War?

Discussion in 'Modern' started by Lucky13, Oct 12, 2016.

  1. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    What did NATO have in Europe, to counter the juggernaut from the east, thinking during the -60's and -70's here....and possibly -50's..
    The Churchill was retired in the early -50's, right?
     
  2. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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    Centurion, Chieftain. Patton
     
  3. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    The U.S. would have had tanks like the M47/M48/M60 Patton and the M103.

    The Germans would have had the Leopard, of course.
     
  4. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    Leopard I, M-60, early leopard II, Chieftain, M-48, AMX-13 and 30, those weird looking Swedish thingys. Swiss had TDs, forget the name, armed with 90mm guns. Belgians and Netherlands used the centurion for most of that time.

    It was a numbers versus quality game really, and intelligence suggests that the Russians knew they needed advantages of about 4.5:1 in tanks to be able to overrun western Europe in either a conventional or chemical/biological environment, but never quite reached those odds.

    Whilst chemical and biological attacks were considered, nuclear attacks, even so called tactical strikes were never seriously considered as the risks were judged to be too high of an all out exchange.
     
  5. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    Swedish S tank is the one, a very remarkable tank armed with a British 105mm. The Swiss had the Pz 61 and 68 again with the British 105mm
     
  6. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    The Swiss had the Panzer 61/68 along with the S as their main battle tanks during the cold war, didn't they?

    They also had the G13 in service until about 1970, if memory serves right.
     
  7. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    I don't think the Swiss army had the S tank, only the Swedish Army. Talking about TD the Germans used the Jadgpanzer 90
     
  8. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Ahh yes, you're right, the S was the Swedish Stridsvagn, kind of mixed my armor up there a little bit, didn't I?

    But then again, Jan should know that already! :lol:
     
  9. Shortround6

    Shortround6 Well-Known Member

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    It was time of fairly rapid development. The Churchill being out of front line service back in the 40s. Some stayed on in engineering roles and even longer as training tanks although the training was for recovery/logistics personnel learning how to load tanks on trailers.
    Centurion went through 11 Marks from about 1948 (MK III) to the early 60s (MK 13) although some Marks were rebuilds.
    Chieftain started coming in the late 60s so the British went through the 17pdr, the 20pdr, the 105mm gun and the 120mm gun in just about 20 years.

    US had handed out M-47s like bead necklaces at a Mardi Gras parade during the early 50s so most nations that could afford it were looking for replacements by the end of the 50s/early 60s which lead to the tanks mentioned by others. NATO had adopted the British 105mm L7 gun which was a huge improvement over most earlier guns. Ammunition improvements kept it in the front ranks for a considerable period of time but means capability in the late 50s vs the 70s is not the same. Improvements in fire control were probably a much bigger change in effectiveness than guns or ammo.

    Swedish S tank being rather a case in point.
    [​IMG]
    Conceived before really effective gun stabilization was available and tanks had to stop in order to fire accurately it made a kind of sense for the driver to be the gunner with the commander having some override controls. radio operator could drive the tank in reverse. Once better stabilizers for turret mounted guns became common and tanks could shoot while moving (and actually hit something) the S tank lost it's reason for being.
    Many tanks were upgraded (rebuilt) with stabilizers/ laser range finders/ ballistic computers and other equipment that radically changed chances of first round hits and changed how many targets could be engaged per minute even though the outside appearance didn't change that much.
     
  10. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    I find it interesting (though I'm not surprised) that some WWII German armor found life in post-war/cold-war Europe.

    While it's not Europe, the Arab-Israeli war in the late 60's was actually the last hurrah for Wehrmacht Panzers as the Syrian Army fielded a half-dozen types against the Israeli Army. Unfortunately for them, the Israelis had more modern armor and cut the Syrians to pieces.
     
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  11. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Great stuff lads! :thumbright:
     
  12. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Which ones, would you see in Berlin, in....'61?
     
  13. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    Germany would have M47 and early M48 tanks but I don't know if they were deployed in Berlin. The British had some Centurions in Berlin and the USA some M48's. The French army in 1961 had the M47 as its main tank and might have had some in Berlins with presumably AMX 13's.
    Although not a tank the German Federal police had some Saladin armoured cars and these might have been in Berlin but putting German armour in Berlin during the height of the cold war would have been tweaking the Russian Bear more than a little bit.
     
  14. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    US had handed out M-47s like bead necklaces at a Mardi Gras parade....

    LMAO
     
  15. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    M48A1 - as seen here at Checkpoint Charlie.

    U.S. armor squared off with Soviet armor when tensions ran high in 1961

    Checkpoint-Charlie_M48A1_1961.jpg
     
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  16. Shortround6

    Shortround6 Well-Known Member

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    The US supplied M-47s to the following NATO countries in these numbers.
    Austria (147),
    Begium (784),
    France(856),
    Greece (396 from USA and West Germany),
    Italy (2,480),
    Portugal (161),
    Spain (389),
    Turkey (1,347 from the US and West Germany),
    West Germany (1,120),
    Yugoslavia (319).
    For around 6500-7000 tanks depending on how many internal NATO transfers and how many tanks Greece and Turkey got from the US.
    Hundreds more went to Asia and the Mid East.

    Berlin in 1961 was split into 4 zones, Soviet, British, French and American. Germans would have had few, if any tanks in Berlin although a few armored cars belong to the Border Police may have been there (a platoon or less?)
    French tanks would have been AMX 13s or M-47s or both. AMX 30 doesn't show up until 1965/66.
    British tanks would have been Centurions.
    Americans would have had M-48s as pictured above.
     
  17. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Was looking in the wrong thread again, not where I left it....questions on kits etc., etc...

    Anyhoo, this looks like an alright kit even though released 30+ years ago....

    104223-10404-pristine.jpg
     
  18. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Dragon have a couple of M48's....

    937964-23045-65-pristine.jpg

    268031-11890-72-pristine.jpg

    204051-11890-19-pristine.jpg
     
  19. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    AFV's M60's looks not too bad either....

    181322-10244-16-pristine.jpg

    963488-10244-94-pristine.jpg

    963462-16882-16-720.jpg

    ....and then you've got Dragon's take....

    966870-15582-68-pristine.jpg

    963486-11890-15-pristine.jpg
     
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  20. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    #20 GrauGeist, Oct 18, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2016
    Here's another shot of the M48A1 tanks at Checkpoint Charlie (taken about the same time as the one I posted earlier).

    What you don't see, is the two lead M48s have bulldozer blades mounted to their front - look closely at the tank seen on the far left and the far right, the blades are just barely visible in the photo.

    Checkpoint-Charlie_1961.jpg
     
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