Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Australia goes with the Abrams...

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Australia goes with the Abrams...

    http://www.theage.com.au/articles/20...594363569.html

    a stupid decision in my mind - the so called advantages in inter-operability with US forces is mitigated by the fact we can't move them offshore without US shipping. Besides the fact that we at most will be able to deploy around 30 vehicles as a "contribution".

    Let us not forget the fact that the M1A1 (not even getting M1A2s - getting REFURBISHED ex-USMC M1A1s) uses a gas turbine, guzzles insane amounts of fuel, and most likely will be too heavy for the roads up north...

    The deal gives us some HEMTTs and other support vehicles as well, but as far as I'm concerned we're getting screwed over. We are not an armoured nation, and I would rather see the money spent on artillery, IBA for every infantrymen (though Gen 4 armour is quite prolific in the ADF), rapid introduction of the Tenix AICW, and hardened Bushmasters, with money going towards pruchasing a LOT more Javelins (or even go non-US and buy the Gill, Spike or Bill-2)

    The fundamental reason for me opposing the M1A1, is the fact that the ADF uses tanks in a different role to that of the americans - the US uses their armour as a the spearpoint, the ADF uses tanks as close support for infantry, used to reduce bunkers, suppress resistance etc. The anti-armour role has historically always been that of the Infantry, with the Milan, Charlie G, and now the Javelin.

    ALSO, we have no IFVs, nor SPHs, so in effect, our armour is on it;s own in the new spearpoint role. PLUS we won't have any of the good ammunition for the M1A1 - we won't get depleted-uranium sabot rounds, just HE (and maybe some British HESH) so even at the outset we've hamstrung ourselves.

    Can anyone see any good reason for this decision?
    Now listening too;
    - Russell Robertson, ruining whatever credibility my football team once had.

  • #2
    I tend to agree. I've always thought of the Australians as specializing in infantry operations, especially in jungle and similar "difficult" terrain. IMHO they'd have been better served with something like the M8 MGS, which carries the firepower of the M1 while being much more deployable (by air, in particular), cheaper to maintain and operate, and it fits in well with an infantry-heavy force. While obviously not as survivable as the M1 against a tank-heavy force, I think it is a good match for the enemies Australians would be likely to face. It includes modular armor options; add some reactive or spaced passive armor and it would be about as impervious to man-portable AT weapons as the M1.

    --- Kevin

    Comment


    • #3
      I am obviously less knowledgable about the strategic direction of the ADF than yourself, but there was almost certainly a politcal component to this.

      Beyond the obvious, that dollars are flowing to the US, which makes for better relations, there is an interoperability component. If the Australian Government wants to participate, along with the US, in the operations which are on the horizon in the next ten years (Iran/North Korea), they are going to play a much bigger role with an M1A1 tank brigade or battalion than they are with a light or motorized infantry brigade. And, more importantly, such a contribution will look much less "token" if it is tied into a "spearhead" operation than if it is a "supporting effort" (as any infantry heavy operation would be, especially in Iran).

      If they are operating with UK or US forces, these armies have more than enough logistical support to keep abrams running.

      I do not mean to suggest that the raison d'etre (I almost certainly butched this spelling) of the ADF is to support US operations, just that the selection of this particular MBT was almost certainly with that purpose in mind.
      PATRICK E. PROCTOR
      ProSIM Company
      http://www.prosimco.com/writing

      Comment


      • #4
        yep, and that's the worst thing - we are NOT suited for spearhead operations, both in ability, and mindset. We have the 1st Armoured Bde, which has the 1st Armoured Rgt (in reality a small US tank Battalion), the 2nd Cavalry Rgt (ditto, but equipped with LAVs), 5/7 RAR (a reinforced mech inf battalion), and the 8/12 Med. Rgt (155mm howitzers). We can not deploy this Bde in full, as it would tax the economy and the sea/airlift capacity of the ADF too much. So the solution is to send troops to fight in "borrowed" vehicles, in roles they are unprepared for.

        Like Kevin said, our strength has always been the quality of our infantry, and our patrolling skills, which are still unmatched. Whilst politically, deploying tanks overseas looks good in the US ("look - our allies have sent tanks"), in Australia, there is more pride in seeing the SASR troops go in deepest into Iraq, accomplish the mission and not take any casualties. Or see 4RAR(Cdo) in full TAG gear assault a compound.

        In any coalition (indeed, according to the ABCA handbook) the weaker members should reinforce their strengths, and cover the areas that are not as well covered by the stronged members. Ie, do attached Aussie tanks increase the ability of a US tank Bde? Not really. Does an attached Aussie infantry battalion, specialists in long-term patrols, counter-infantry(-insurgent) warfare increase the ability of a US Infantry Bde? Hell yes.

        I understand the sentiment behind the purchase, but there is a problem with being a Jack-of-all-Trades; you're the Master of none.
        Now listening too;
        - Russell Robertson, ruining whatever credibility my football team once had.

        Comment


        • #5
          Ivan its the 1st Brigade, no Armour in the title.

          The Second Cavalry Regiment is a recon unit, closer in role to a US ACR except isn't intended to fight hard like an ACR can.

          The decision to buy a heavy tank was driven out of embaressment that significant forces (beyound the SAS) could be deployed to Iraq. BUT the need for a replacement tank has been on the books for many years, and Army experimentation had demonstrated the need for an armoured direct fire weapon to engage point targets in a hostile environment (ie when they may shoot back!). The Leo1 is getting harder to support.

          While I personnally have reservations about it (especially the lack of strategic lift, and suitability for the Defence of Australia), I think it is a artiful bit of politics, and after all war is politics by other means

          Our core competency is as a light infantry Army, we are not getting rid of that, but the long negleted "heavy side" required a boost, that I believe is in Australia's national interest.

          And Pat I'm still here, just snowed under at the moment

          Cheers

          Rob
          My wife says I have the body of a god...

          Buddha!

          Comment


          • #6
            And Pat I'm still here, just snowed under at the moment
            Good to here. Drop me a note off line when you get a chance.
            Last edited by Pat Proctor; 09 Mar 04, 21:55.
            PATRICK E. PROCTOR
            ProSIM Company
            http://www.prosimco.com/writing

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Ivan Rapkinov
              Can anyone see any good reason for this decision?
              Hey Ivan,

              Not to throw your own recommended reading back at you , but the article on point suppression for complex terrain (from the AAJ) I mentioned in the other post actual recommends heavy tanks for use in complex terrain as extra fire power with additional protection. The basic argument, iirc, is that the armored vehicles you currently use do not offer enough protection in complex terrain for use in the suppression of enemy troops. In addition, in the June 2003 AAJ, there is an article that talks about the role of the tank in ADF operations, that I believe suggests a need for heavier tanks.

              This is what you get for recommending reading.

              All that being said, I don't know anywhere near enough to offer my opinion on the matter, but there are some folks in your neck of the woods that believe these things will be very useful.

              Take care,
              Brian

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Scully
                Hey Ivan,

                Not to throw your own recommended reading back at you , but the article on point suppression for complex terrain (from the AAJ) I mentioned in the other post actual recommends heavy tanks for use in complex terrain as extra fire power with additional protection. The basic argument, iirc, is that the armored vehicles you currently use do not offer enough protection in complex terrain for use in the suppression of enemy troops. In addition, in the June 2003 AAJ, there is an article that talks about the role of the tank in ADF operations, that I believe suggests a need for heavier tanks.

                This is what you get for recommending reading.

                All that being said, I don't know anywhere near enough to offer my opinion on the matter, but there are some folks in your neck of the woods that believe these things will be very useful.

                Take care,
                Brian
                But does heavy tank have to mean M1A1? The diversity of terrain demaded in our defensive options limits the use of such a heavy weight as the M1A1, instead weight, firepower, protection, speed, range, maintanence and costing all need to be considered. There are other options out there that may suit our needs better than the M1A1 and still come under the title heavy tank as suggested by the article in the AAJ.

                BTW I emailed the publishers of the AAJ and was sent 2 hard copies of it for free and was put on a list to receive any further copies, BONUS not much comes for free in the world nowdays so when they do its great.
                Not lip service, nor obsequious homage to superiors, nor servile observance of forms and customs...the Australian army is proof that individualism is the best and not the worst foundation upon which to build up collective discipline - General Monash

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Ivan Rapkinov
                  http://www.theage.com.au/articles/20...594363569.html
                  Can anyone see any good reason for this decision?
                  When in doubt, follow the money and follow the politics. The article itself may provide all you need when it says ...

                  > the US Administration will sell the tanks directly to Australia at a substantial discount.

                  > It could also allow Australian crews to fight in pre-positioned US tanks.
                  Best regards, Major H
                  [email protected]

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Temujin
                    But does heavy tank have to mean M1A1? The diversity of terrain demaded in our defensive options limits the use of such a heavy weight as the M1A1, instead weight, firepower, protection, speed, range, maintanence and costing all need to be considered.
                    What other options would you consider more suitable than the M1A1?
                    Editor-in-Chief
                    GameSquad.com

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      What about the UK's Challenger 2 or Germany's Leopard Tanks? pretty rough and ready vehicles if you ask me.

                      In desperation what about a T-80...... as if....

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by switch_back
                        What about the UK's Challenger 2 or Germany's Leopard Tanks? pretty rough and ready vehicles if you ask me.

                        In desperation what about a T-80...... as if....
                        That doesn't make any sense. What was said earlier is that the M1 doesn't fit the mission profile that Australia's armed forces have. The Leopard II and Challenger II are both designed for the same environment the Abrams is. The Challanger is even heavier! The Leopard is nearly on par with the Abrams, but is has no advantage in firepower or armor protection, it's just as heavy, but it lacks the speed of the M1. It's an inferior vehicle.

                        I assumed what was being suggested by Ivan was that Australia needs a "light" MBT or something similar to an LAV. If Australia really does need a new MBT, then it's not going to do much better than an M1.

                        I should also point out that the M1 has the advantage of being extensively tested in real life combat operations. It can operate well in the US, Europe, or a desert environment. The same can be said to a somewhat lesser extent for the Challenger. The latest French tank, the Leopard II, and most other MBTs have never seriously been tested on the real battlefield. They look good on paper, but who knows? Soviet built equipment has been proved to be wholly inferior to US weapons systems on the battlefield. Buying a bunch of T-80s would also significantly increase the possibility of a serious fratricide incident. Bad idea.
                        Editor-in-Chief
                        GameSquad.com

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          In that case, if only the US Sheridan was still available, that would have been an excellent tank for this circumstance.

                          Is the M60 still available? despite its lower fire control it would be quite well suited to being lighter and more manueverable in complex terrian.

                          Point taken on the Challenger though.... Leopard I still think would be kinda more suitable than the Abrams, lower cost to look after.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Has Australia ever considered purchasing any of the fine weapon systems developed by the South African arms industry ??
                            Given that the terrain is somewhat similar, I think the Rooikat(?) might be a good fit.
                            Scientists have announced they've discovered a cure for apathy. However no one has shown the slightest bit of interest !!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              In that case, if only the US Sheridan was still available, that would have been an excellent tank for this circumstance.
                              The Sheridan was never an excellent tank for *any* purpose. The gun was seriously oversized for the platform, due to the requirements of firing the Shillelagh missile. The result was that firing it would not infrequently cause actual damage to the fire control gear and even the crew due to recoil beyond what the light chassis could properly absorb. It was an experiment that never panned out, much like the M60A2. The 82nd Airborne kept it around as long as they did only for lack of any alternative airdroppable light tank. Admittedly, its mobility was excellent, but in general with regard to firepower, protection, and reliability it was a complete dud.


                              Is the M60 still available? despite its lower fire control it would be quite well suited to being lighter and more manueverable in complex terrian.
                              Although technically lighter than the M1, it is still in the same "heavy" class. It is also a 50-year-old design. Newer designs can achieve similar protection levels with much lower weights.

                              There is no shortage of suitable modern designs available. The fundamental question here is, what is the role? Somebody must have decided the Australian Army needs a heavy tank. If so, then the M1 is certainly a fine choice. If not, then it is going to be a drain on logistics and be unnecessarily difficult to deploy.

                              --- Kevin

                              Comment

                              Latest Topics

                              Collapse

                              • casanova
                                Berlin.1945
                                by casanova
                                The Sowjet T-34 tank against a German Tiger tank in Berlin in the II World War in 1945. ...
                                Today, 23:41
                              • casanova
                                AW 169M
                                by casanova
                                The Austrian minister of defence Klaudia Tanner declared the buy of 18 Italian military helicopters of the type AW 169M for the Austrian army, the Bundesheer....
                                Today, 23:26
                              • JBark
                                What changed?
                                by JBark
                                There was a time not too long ago when this forum was full of discussion, multiple posts, votes and involved discussions on the best of the war, etc.,...
                                Today, 18:54
                              Working...
                              X