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Thread: M1A2 vs Challenger 2 (intelligent debate)

  1. #46
    Senior Contributor Archer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stan187 View Post
    I imagine that most modern Western MBTs would be able to hit a target at 5.1km. The problem is that the Germans/French/Israelis haven't gotten in the situation where such an opportunity arose.
    At 5.1 km, the first problem is of optics- ie can your battlesights even make out a target? Second, is if the target is moving. Third is of doctrine- ie what range does one engage at?
    The IDF doctrine-afaik- does stress on the last, long range engagements. On the Golan for instance, they are said to field prepared positions, where the tank is sufficiently elevated- with only the gun and optics visible, and a part of the turret showing, for it to be able to engage in long range sniping, and hence whittle down any mass attack. I am currently reading a book on ''73 and they did it then too, of course, with advances in optics and sights, the ranges have kept pace.
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  2. #47
    WAB BOUNCER Senior Contributor Stan187's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archer View Post
    At 5.1 km, the first problem is of optics- ie can your battlesights even make out a target? Second, is if the target is moving. Third is of doctrine- ie what range does one engage at?
    The IDF doctrine-afaik- does stress on the last, long range engagements. On the Golan for instance, they are said to field prepared positions, where the tank is sufficiently elevated- with only the gun and optics visible, and a part of the turret showing, for it to be able to engage in long range sniping, and hence whittle down any mass attack. I am currently reading a book on ''73 and they did it then too, of course, with advances in optics and sights, the ranges have kept pace.
    Yup, that's the standard hull-down position. If you're reading about the Yom Kippur War, Chaim Herzog's book, as well as the one by the Insight Team at London Times do the conflict some justice.

    Back then optics were pretty crude, from what I understand. Even the Centurions the Israelis had still used tracer machinegun ammo to determine range. As far as I'm aware, the Israelis still teach their gunners to be able to shoot without the targeting system, in case it ever goes down in battle.
    Last edited by Stan187; 03 Feb 07, at 02:35.
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  3. #48
    Senior Contributor Archer's Avatar
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    From Tank-net

    Given that the longest tank-versus-vehicle precision engagements appear to have been Israeli ones (for example, documented by George Forty in _Tank Action_ and concerning the destruction of Syrian earth-moving equipment using 105mm APDS at 11km), it doesn't seem unreasonable to suggest that Israeli FCS may have an edge in ultra-long-range engagements, because they have seen a need for them.

    David
    More details, are perhaps in order. The book explains this set of engagements in pages 252-254.

    It seems that the Syrians had been attempting to divert water in the Golan Heights area.

    The aim of the Israelis was to stop this, but rolling over the border with tanks to duff-up some earth moving equipment, or using lots of artillery to do the same, was not considered in order, as there was a brokered ceasefire in place at the time.

    The whole exercise depended on the Syrians first breaking the ceasefire, thus enabling the Israelis to respond. Various engagements at various ranges (1500metres and up) using a variety of equipment took place, culminating in the APDS shot, which was apparently observed directly (although by off-board observers, which shouldn't be a surprise at that range).

    The shot had been previously simulated in a training area that had been remodelled for the purpose.

    According to the book, it was a first-round hit on a track, which caused the Syrians to move their earth-moving efforts to a distance of 22km, behind a ridge.

    After that, the Israelis had to bomb the worksite and the occupation of the Golan Heights in 1967 ended the Syrian's waterworks projects altogether.

    Can any of "our" Israelis confirm/contradict/expand upon this story?

    David
    Tzefa,

    yjavehn, DB is exactly right... there was an 11km tank hit in august of 1965 and several other long range engagements, called Operation "Bezek".
    Interesting that General Tal was the gunner in one of the tanks.

    See , 1964-65..
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    Marsh Gelbart, author of book/s on the Merkava series.

    Yep, the "War of the Waters" in 1965, where the IDF intervened to stop the Syrian's diverting the headwaters of the Jordan and cutting Israel's main supply of fresh water.

    On the 17th March 1965, Israel Tal and the well known "tank sniper" Shlomo Cohen, destroyed Syrian earth moving equipment at a range of 11Km. On the 17th August, in one of a series of border clashes which followed the destruction of the earth moving equipment, the IDF destroyed three dug in Syrian tanks at a range of 3 km with direct tank fire. Not a bad job considering the primitive FCS in use and all part and parcel of Tal's obsessive drive to improve long range tank fire in the IDF's armoured corp.

    cheers
    Marsh
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  4. #49
    Senior Contributor Archer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stan187 View Post
    Yup, that's the standard hull-down position. If you're reading about the Yom Kippur War, Chaim Herzog's book, as well as the one by the Insight Team at London Times do the conflict some justice.
    Thanks, I'll look them up!

    Back then optics were pretty crude, from what I understand. Even the Centurions the Israelis had still used tracer machinegun ammo to determine range. As far as I'm aware, the Israelis still teach their gunners to be able to shoot without the targeting system, in case it ever goes down in battle.

    Yup, ranging machine guns were used the world over. The Indian Army for instance used them with their cents as well. I think all armies train on backup sights/aux sights for the "just in case" reason.
    Karmani Vyapurutham Dhanuhu

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  5. #50
    Senior Contributor Archer's Avatar
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    Thread on tank-net. Be aware, flames to be expected

    Israeli opinion of the M1 Abrams - Tanknet
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  6. #51
    Military Professional T_igger_cs_30's Avatar
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    Given that the longest tank-versus-vehicle precision engagements appear to have been Israeli ones (for example, documented by George Forty in _Tank Action_ and concerning the destruction of Syrian earth-moving equipment using 105mm APDS at 11km
    ),

    I have stayed out of this endless debate for a number of reasons, but IMO I seriously doubt that 105mm APDS took anything out at 11kms, for a number of reasons but the obvious ones spring to mind. I cannot wait to read this now. Be interesting if it is fact.
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  7. #52
    WAB BOUNCER Senior Contributor Stan187's Avatar
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    Good find, I've never heard of this 11km shot, but then again, I don't think its made up if it involved Israel Tal, he's one of the most important tankers in the history of armored warfare.
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  8. #53
    Military Professional T_igger_cs_30's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stan187 View Post
    Good find, I've never heard of this 11km shot, but then again, I don't think its made up if it involved Israel Tal, he's one of the most important tankers in the history of armored warfare.
    Thats the reason why I am going to check it out before I denounce it..
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  9. #54
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    According to the book, it was a first-round hit on a track, which caused the Syrians to move their earth-moving efforts to a distance of 22km, behind a ridge.

    According to the book, it was a first-round hit with the spent penetrator landing softly on a track, which caused the Syrians to move their earth-moving efforts to a distance of 22km, behind a ridge.

    Fixed.

  10. #55
    Senior Contributor Archer's Avatar
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    So that would be the longest range engagement, recorded- even if a lucky fluke.

    What I found more revealing was the emphasis on long range sniping, as attributed to Gen. Tal and corroborated by an Israeli tanker in that some what raucous thread..

    Yjavehn- poster- israeli tanker- states that 8km engagements are possible for sniper tanks, and implies that the israelis train for the role. Dadi, yajevhn provide more details on the FCS as well.
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  11. #56
    Military Professional T_igger_cs_30's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zraver View Post
    According to the book, it was a first-round hit with the spent penetrator landing softly on a track, which caused the Syrians to move their earth-moving efforts to a distance of 22km, behind a ridge.

    Fixed.
    That is certainly a more acceptable and believable statement
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  12. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archer View Post
    So that would be the longest range engagement, recorded- even if a lucky fluke.

    What I found more revealing was the emphasis on long range sniping, as attributed to Gen. Tal and corroborated by an Israeli tanker in that some what raucous thread..

    Yjavehn- poster- israeli tanker- states that 8km engagements are possible for sniper tanks, and implies that the israelis train for the role. Dadi, yajevhn provide more details on the FCS as well.
    and he is lying through his teeth. A sabot round will easily travel that far if the barrel is elevated (a 105mm will travel over 20 miles as a giant lawn dart), but it won't retain enough energy to be an effective battlefeild weapon even if the optics can cope with the ranges. A Heat round can travel that far if properly elevated but then its more like using tanks in an artillery role, not exactly a novel idea.

    lets look a tthe tactics of the situation for a second shall we.

    1- The Earths horizon is about 3.5- 4 km away on level ground. to get an 8- 11Km shot means you have to be elevated. That leaves two options fighting form the military crest or the true crest of the hill. As a tanker both location are death traps for a sniper tank and his buddies. As soon as the gun flashes from firing that first round, enemy scouts are going to be raining arty down on top of you and your buddies; most of whom not having the dubious hoonor of sniper tank now get to ride out a barrage of nastyness ( gee thanks for nothing guys). To change posistion if you're on the military crest means backing up a hill and taking your main armor blocks out the line of fire. The Merkva has good top armor but not that good.

    2- Israeli engagements in 67, 73, and the 80's were all well with in thier tanks guns normal elevation and depression envelopes. The Syrians were charging up hills the Israelies were firing down them. Quite a bit different from shooting mountain top to mountain top or using direct fire to reach deep into Syria to hit key units.

    3- Even if General Tal did make an 11km shot way back when (Like the myth of General George Washington throwing a coin across the Potomac). Why use direct fire from a tank and thus give away a fightign postion for an entire unit, today? Much better to use missiles fired from an apache. the Hellfire will kill anything it hits out to 10km (2km further than the 8km range cited for sniper tanks). It doesnt give away prepared fighting posistions, it can even be fired from behind a hill. It is also fire and forget and a few of them raining down on enemy tanks is damn sure to break morale fast (just ask the Republican Guard).

    Israeli tankers are ok troops, and thier now retired veterans were world class, but thier is danger in beleiving your own propaganda. It seems that the erstwhile super troopers of the IDF made the same mistakes of committing tanks into battle without support and used recon by fire in thier recent war with Hezzbollah. It is quite possible that if the IAF had not ***** slapped Lebanon so hard and forced the UN to act the jihadi's might wll have dealt the Israeli Army a serious defeat. Instead of screaming that they're number 1, maybe they should train like they're number 2. That is what worked for the US Army at Ft Irwin.

  13. #58
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    Zraver,

    Had you a chance to study the Israeli-Hezbollah War in depth yet? I like your eval as why there was such a breakdown in from brigade down to company in such woeful neglect of common military practises.

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    I don't think you could really hit a tank from 9km away with a tank round ... not reliably anyway - at least, IIRC you're expected to hit within a 2m diameter (or maybe a little more?) but not dead on. This dispersion is linear so at 8km you're looking an 8m diameter. It doesn't sound like you can reliably hit anything but a building at that range.

  15. #60
    WAB BOUNCER Senior Contributor Stan187's Avatar
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    What the hell is sniper tank anyway? LoL.
    In Iran people belive pepsi stands for pay each penny save israel. -urmomma158
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