From the review:
It’s ??????? (plastik) Comrade, but not as we know it! Model Dads builds the new plastic T-34 from Battlefront for Flames of War.
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T-34 Tankovy Company (SBX30) Includes five plastic T-34 tanks with 76mm and 85mm turrets, one metal tank commander sprue, one decal sheet & 15 rare-earth magnets.
The T-34 was the most-produced tank of World War II. When the German Wehrmacht first encountered it in battle in 1941, German tank generals von Kleist and Guderian called it "the deadliest tank in the world."
Battlefront's first all-plastic World War II tank has been designed with with high-precision computer-aided design technology.
The Fokker CX was originally designed for the Royal Dutch East Indies Army in 1933 as a replacement for the Fokker CV. Intended for reconnaissance; the Fokker CV could also double as a little bomber. Like all Fokker designs of the period, it was of mixed construction; a combination of wooden wings and a welded steel frame covered with aluminium plate and fabric.
Manned by a two-man crew; a pilot and an observer, the Fokker CX was armed with a pair of 7.9mm machine-guns fixed to the front fuselage with a third intended for defensive purposes mounted in the rear cockpit and operated by observer. In addition, the Fokker CX could carry a payload of two 175kg bombs or four 100kg bombs.
During the Second World War, the Fokker CX briefly saw action with the Dutch Air Force. However, it was the in the Finnish Air Force where it served with the most distinction. Despite facing the might of the Soviets, the determination, skill and courage of Finnish pilots allowed them to hold their own regardless of their limited resources.
Israel acquired its first Sherman tank via a clandestine arrangement with British soldiers tasked with destroying military equipment prior to the British withdrawal from Palestine in 1948. By 1956, they had several hundred Sherman tanks scrounged from various scrap yards around the world, including 60 M1 Shermans provided by France (M1 was the Israeli designation for the M4A1 tanks armed with 76mm guns).
The Israelis acquired more M1 tanks in the late 1950s, having some 300 at their peak. By 1967 the remaining M1 tanks had been fitted with the improved HVSS suspension of the ‘Easy Eight' and were used for infantry support work on the Jordanian front.
With the surrounding Arab nations receiving increasingly powerful Soviet tanks, the Israelis began to modify their Sherman tanks to keep pace. The first model, the M50 Sherman, mounted the French 75mm CN-75-50 gun from the AMX 13 light tank in a modified 75mm turret. The first 50 vehicles were ready just in time for the 1956 war. The mobility of these initial vehicles was poor and the engine was overworked, so the engines were replaced with powerful Cummings diesel engines and the suspension upgraded to HVSS like the M1 Super Shermans. In 1967 the Israelis had 179 M50 ‘French' Sherman tanks.
Unlike the Western nations, the Soviet Union continued with heavy tank development long after WWII. First seen by Western nations at the 1945 Victory Parade in Berlin, the IS-3 was an evolutionary development of the Iosif Stalin series of heavy tanks used extensively during World War Two.
The IS-3 heavy tank made excellent use of sloped armour on the hull and had a hemispherical turret which would be seen on nearly all post-war Soviet tanks. Armed with the outstanding D-25T 122mm gun, the IS-3 was, however, relatively slow and suffered from reliability issues, especially in the hot desert.
Egypt acquired roughly 100 of these tanks, assigning them to support the T-34/85 tanks in the infantry divisions and back up the T-55 tanks in the mechanised and armoured divisions. Their combat results during the Six-Day War were not auspicious.
While the Jordanians had in essence adapted the British system of marking their vehicles; large geometric shapes used to indicate battalion and company. The armoured fighting vehicles of the United Arab Republic featured very few if any markings at all. Of the few vehicles that did display any type of identification, the markings were fairly straightforward. A simple number on the side of a turret or an stylised eagle were all that was deemed significant.
Originally designed as an evolutionary replacement for the T-34 medium tank, the T-54 (and the later T-55) quickly evolved into the Soviet Union's first main battle tank. Entering full production in 1947, the T-54 and T-55 series became the most produced tank in history with up to 100,000 units eventually rolling off the assembly lines over the next 35 years.
The hallmarks of the design were its mechanical simplicity, good mobility, compact design, and the potent D-10T 100mm gun (the same weapon as used in the SU-100M). Unfortunately the compact design resulted in a cramped interior which interfered with the effective operation of the tank and its armament.
The T-54 and T-55 were liberally provided to Soviet allies and satellite states including the United Arab Republic and Syria. The Sinai Field Army had several hundred T-54 and T-55 tanks grouped in the 4th Armoured Division and the 6th Mechanised Division.
Despite many of them being fitted with infrared equipment and stabilisers, they generally fared poorly against the better utilised Israeli armour. Their poor gunnery and abysmal tactics allowed the well trained Israelis to turn back the Arab attacks, even at night.
The Suez Crisis was the Israeli's first experience of large-scale tank operations and it was quickly realised that if markings were not legible under normal conditions they were sure to be missed in the heat of combat. By the time of the Six-Day War broke out in June 1967 the Israeli Defence Force had significantly increased the size of vehicle markings in an attempt to make them more recognisable to friendly units.
In its on-going quest for more and better tanks, Israel managed to acquire more than a hundred M48A1and M48A2C tanks from West Germany and the United States. These were codenamed Magach (Battering Ram).
First shown publicly in 1965, the M51 Isherman (a name used by the crews from a contraction of ‘Israeli Sherman') was an even more radical adaptation of the venerable Sherman design. Based on the 76mm-armed M1 chassis, the M51 was armed with a modified French 105mm gun from the latest AMX-30 main battle tank. The gun itself had been shortened and a huge muzzle brake was added to handle its recoil.
Like the riflemen, the sappers get the tasks done with the minimum of fuss or complaint. These dedicated specialists clear minefields, dig fortifications, and assault enemy strongpoints. They can also lay down wire and mines to help strengthen the riflemen's defence.
The ROKS-2 was a man-packed flame-thrower used by the Red Army throughout the duration of the Second World War. It had a unique design feature in the fact that the man carry it was meant to resemble the rest of his comrades in arms.
The fuel tank was designed to resemble a regular rucksack and the flame projector itself the standard military rifle of the Red Army, the Mosin–Nagant 91/30. It was theorised that in the heat of battle the enemy would not be drawn to it until it could be brought to bear.
Stalin's great purge (1936 to 1938) took a punishing toll on the professional officers of the Red Army. Many talented, but outspoken, officers were dragged off to the gulags of Siberia for re-education, or in other cases simply shot as enemies of the state. This resulted in a state of perpetual fear among those remaining military officers.
Each company also had a political komissar, as part of the dual command. The climate of fear caused by the purges meant the military officers often deferred to the komissars, despite the komissars being civilian Communist Party officials with little or no military training. This resulted in some rather unsound military decisions.
The Russian soldier has traditionally embodied stoicism. They were Tough, loyal soldiers able to endure the most extreme hardships of campaign and battle with not a word of complaint. This attitude has continued into the Red Army.