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All in the Mind? The psychological effect of Tiger Tanks and 88ís

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  • All in the Mind? The psychological effect of Tiger Tanks and 88ís

    All in the Mind? The psychological effect of Tiger Tanks and 88’s

    I’m interested in the way mass psychology, ‘mindsets’, fears and syndromes work in various ways and (you guessed it!) am trying to re-develop (from yellowing 1970’s notes and scribbled jottings - no laptops back then folks) a tutorial thematic on examples of the above phenomenon in modern era (1455 – present-day) armies (and if an army isn’t a ‘mass’, then what the heck is it?).

    I thought a good example from WWII might be the way the German Tiger tank (Pzkw VI) and 88mm Anti-aircraft/anti-tank gun established such fearsome, almost legendary reputations amongst allied armies.

    I’m wondering whether posters think the standing of the Tiger and ‘88’ as ‘killer’ super-weapons was based on the reality that they were both simply very good at what they did for their day OR if their status may have been more a product of simple word-of-mouth rumour-spreading and panicking scaremongering (too strong a word?).

    Quite a few writers in the military field have been suggesting over the years that they were ‘overrated’.
    This of course begs the question: compared to what?
    They’ve also pointed out and I think probably exaggerated certain problems and deficiencies the weapons had.
    For example: the Tiger was supposedly too slow and cumbersome, had complicated suspension and road-wheel system, engines requiring high maintenance and there was confusion and uncertainty regarding role etc.
    Or that the 88 was too high to be easily concealed an important factor for the anti-tank role.

    I’m sure the weapons have been discussed before on the forum but I’m mainly interested in the effect of their ‘reps’ and how allied actions may have been effected by the fear that Tigers or 88’s were ‘around’.

    Regards
    lodestar

  • #2
    In my 'umble opinion, the fact that both us and Ivan had to winkle the bastrards out of their lairs, to kill 'em had something to do with it. All adolf's big cats could be made to suffer when they came out of the jungle to hunt. Most famous example being Wittmann's mob getting caught in Joe Ekins' tiger pit at Saint-Aignan-de-Cramesnil.

    The long toll of the brave
    Is not lost in darkness
    Over the fruitful earth
    And athwart the seas
    Hath passed the light of noble deeds
    Unquenchable forever.

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    • #3
      Yes I know the whole thing together or apart has been done too many times. I personally had little to do with tanks of any country or breed BUT I did strike up an unwanted association with 88s and it was not the gun itself but the accuracy of the missile it was flinging at you!! For I am convinced that it was the finely trained German gun crews that were mainly responsible. lcm1
      'By Horse by Tram'.


      I was in when they needed 'em,not feeded 'em.
      " Youuu 'Orrible Lot!"

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