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Wyvern2 #41 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 21:00

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Great read from the chieftain, as always(don't think i can say anything you've written wasn't a good read, but anywho)

 

So much misinformation in the comments, its not even funny.

ninjad by the chieftain himself

Either way, the empirical evidence suggests the M4 was great, no matter what people do or don't want you to believe, and before you go in depth about how crews hated it, a lot of crews loved it, starting with Loza and Pool, both of whom were very successful M4 tankers. Was it flawless, no, certainly wasn't, however, its flaws were usually in the departments nobody cares to talk about, like bad center of mass(according to Loza, his tipped over) and other such issues, no real complaints about firepower or armor, and tbh, compared to other tanks in its weight class, the M4 was perfectly normal, with armor about on par with a T-34 and slightly better than the lighter cromwell and PzIV, though not really when compared to late model croms



zloykrolik #42 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 21:02

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View PostMeplat, on Oct 18 2014 - 12:22, said:

Everybody, Drink!

 

Dammit! Now I'll never get anything done.:biggrin:

Priory_of_Sion #43 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 21:02

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View PostHarvester_0f_Sorrow, on Oct 18 2014 - 15:27, said:

 

 

lol its everywhere and of course the American government wouldn't like to admit it.


 

obviously you are very young or you don't know very much

Obviously if there was evidence everywhere it wouldn't be hard to post it. 

View PostStrohsVonPabst, on Oct 18 2014 - 15:37, said:

Chieftain,Question for you:were you an American tanker IN World War 2? If so,age has been kind to you.Mr.Cooper was an adult serving in the U.S.Army,dealing with tanks during World War 2. I do have respect for your knowledge of armoured warfare and very much enjoy the video's you make.Though why you have not made one for Italian armour such as the M13/40 is puzzling.I suppose after reading this,you never will.That said,you are,in essence,calling this Man a liar.Never-no-mind he attended the Virginia Military Institute was a Captain during World War II,in which he served as an Ordnance Liaison Officer with the 3rd Armored Division, and was awarded 5 Campaign battle stars, a Distinguished Unit Citation, the Belgian Fourragere and the Bronze Star Medal.The Man worked with the very tanks you,it seems in a roundabout way claim he had spurious knowledge of.Also,the guy is dead,you are slapping a corpse.So when,and if World of Warships ever comes out,are you going to say American submariner's had lied about the problems they had with the torpedoes they had been issued? Oh yea,I remember you saying there will not be submarines in WoWS.Okay,but you get my drift!?

               I have probably come off as a [edited],that was not my intent.But Mr.Cooper was not the only American to say the M4 was not up to the task.It would seem that the M4A3E8 and Firefly evened the odds.From what little I do know(as I was not born until 1970 and thus cannot say with 100% metaphysical certitude what really happened)it would seem that the gun was the major issue,not so much the rest of the tank.Also,from what I have learned,the Mk V and VI do seem to have had major issues with reliability but,it would also seem they did have better armour protection and vastly superior weapons.The Germans probably could have stuck with the Mk III L and Mk IV H and had themselves a lot easier time.But,then again,I was not there,I have to rely on the words of the Men who fought that war in those vehicles.I am just a history buff with more experience studying the ancient Near East and the Pacific War,and I go by the people who had been there.I would like to say Darius gave Alexander a much tougher time,as I am a Persian fanboy,But I was not there.With all due courtesy~S.V.P.     P.S. So,do you think there is a chance you might make a video on Italian armour?????

Cooper isn't lying but is going off poor memory. He literally made up tank engagements(Yeide's TD book mentions this) but spreading misinformation is different from disinformation(lying).

 

Eyewitness testimony isn't going to hold up over empirical data.

View PostHarvester_0f_Sorrow, on Oct 18 2014 - 15:44, said:

its nice to see that most of us know about the shermans and their many faults

 

and its pretty disgusting to see all the dummies with no clue

List the M4's faults please.

 

Ever wonder why grammar is poor in posts which criticize the M4?



TigerDude33 #44 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 21:03

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You can argue that the mass of US tanks was sufficient to win the war, but realistically, there was no way to lose the war by 1943.  US efforts saved West Germany from Russia.

 

Also, TD stats aren't very meaningful, however cherry-picked they were.  TD's were widely dismissed as ineffective after the war.

 

 


Edited by TigerDude33, Oct 18 2014 - 21:05.


FlorbFnarb #45 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 21:08

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View Postiraqiwildman, on Oct 18 2014 - 12:26, said:

I watched Fury last night and at the beginning it stated that American armor was inferior to German armor. I though "Oh No, another mis-statement of the facts." But the movie turned out to be very good and intense.

 

A lot of the tankers back then might well have been under the impression their tanks were worse than the enemy's.  War breeds illusions and myths.



Priory_of_Sion #46 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 21:12

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View PostTigerDude33, on Oct 18 2014 - 16:03, said:

You can argue that the mass of US tanks was sufficient to win the war, but realistically, there was no way to lose the war by 1943.  US efforts saved West Germany from Russia.

 

Also, TD stats aren't very meaningful, however cherry-picked they were.  TD's were widely dismissed as ineffective after the war.

 

 

How are TD stats non-meaningful? It isn't like many ADs armed with tanks had good ratios.

 

Nearly all TD battalions had K:D ratios between 2:1 to 5:1. This is comparable to German Tiger Battalions.

 

TDs were very effective on the tactical level, but were just unnecessary. They were a "successful failure." 



zloykrolik #47 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 21:13

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View PostTigerDude33, on Oct 18 2014 - 13:03, said:

 

Also, TD stats aren't very meaningful, however cherry-picked they were.  TD's were widely dismissed as ineffective after the war.

 

 

From what I read in "The Tank Killers", Harry Yeide's book on TD's, the problem was that the TD battalions didn't really function as the doctrine called for them to.

 

Not that they were a failure, they were a positive value in combat, but they didn't get used in the manner that they were developed for. In Yeide's words: "a successful failure."



husband #48 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 21:20

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@chieftan by any chance where would find US army tank losses in the European theatre? I am sure the data can be parsed many ways, damaged, recoverable or irreparable etc or by month... 

 

also as the chieftain noted the better gunned Shermans came after Normandy



thandiflight #49 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 22:31

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In science one of the greatest sources of bias when evaluating "evidence" is "authority". The assumption that somebody, on account of experience or position, is correct is just that, an assumption. All too frequently anecdotal observation replaces carefully constructed evaluation and all too frequently "authority" rejects the real, validated evidence. Cooper provides anecdotal observation and does not disclose potential sources of bias. He is entitled to his opinion and he expresses it but that does not make it historically or scientifically valid. We all love the underdog. To think that our side won despite inferior equipment has a "feel good" factor and makes it attractive to the entertainment industry. Thus Hollywood, Discovery Channel and the History Channel are not good sources of accurate information, they are sources of entertainment that just so happen to contain enough factual material to make them interesting and convincing. Like Cooper's book however they do not constitute evidence. The fact remains is that the M4 was one of the most influential tanks in history but its legacy has been maligned. It did what it was meant to do, it worked. Ask any combat soldier what he wants - something that is fancy or something that works reliably and I know what my answer would be.

balmung60 #50 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 23:02

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View PostDezert, on Oct 18 2014 - 14:50, said:

In my personal research since playing this game I have always asked myself why didn't "We" (Americans) take heavy armor into WWII.  After all the research I read the M4 would always be the tank of choice because of money and space it would take to ship them abroad.  It was more a political and money issue to fund the war as effectively as possible.  The M6 never saw action because of this issue. 

 

The other main points to this argument that has been posted by Chieftain was articles he found and the actual usage of the M4 and it's effectiveness when compared to other tanks.  Maintenance it was probably the best tank in my opinion as it was able to see field repairs quickly and get put back into service in a short amount of time.  If you compare it to the Panther it was a beast to repair if it came to one of its many axles as you would have to take out  engine and transmission components to get to.

 

In my opinion the M4 became the basis of what most modern tanks take after when it comes to design.  Something that has maneuverability, with adequate firepower, and cost effective in repairs and delivery.

 

Those aren't the only issues that led to choosing the M4 over the M6.  The M6 also brought very little to the table that the M4 didn't, as it didn't have much more effective frontal armor, similar side and rear armor, and any gun that the M6 could mount could likely also be mounted to the M4 (same turret ring size).

 

The M4's also arguably a design predecessor to everything up to the M60 (M2 medium -> M3 Lee -> M4 Sherman -> T20 series -> M26 -> M46 -> M47 -> M48 -> M60).  I'm not entirely clear on the accuracy of this design lineage at the end, but until the M1 Abrams, most US medium/main battle tanks were fairly direct developments from prior models.



Captain_Dorja #51 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 23:08

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Good read. With Fury in theaters, now is a nice time to think about how a freaking Sherman can be more than a box to die inside of. It was nice to see a movie where an American tank is the hero.

Anyway, I get really tired of people always being like, "ERMAGERD GUYS HOW WE WIN WW2 WITH CRAPPY THINGS?" People don't know that 1) The Sherman didn't suck balls. Yeah sure, it wasn't perfect either, but it wasn't a bad tank. I get really tired of just hearing how they caught fire at the drop of a hat. No one seems to know just how prevalent Panthers were for catching fire because of their sealed engine compartments. 2) Everyone seems to forget that Germany didn't build many Tigers, they built even fewer Tiger IIs, and Jagdpanthers. They did build several thousand Panthers, but it seems to be basically forgotten just how much of a workhorse the Panzer IV was. An M4 Sherman and a Panzer IV weren't that much of a mismatch in favor of either one, and it would have been the most commonly encountered German tank.

Anlushac11 #52 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 23:42

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The US did not field M6 and T14 heavy tanks.

 

But they did rush into combat the E2 Sherman which has similar firepower but lots more armor than the T14 and the T26E3 which is debatable if it was better than the M6.


Edited by Anlushac11, Oct 18 2014 - 23:42.


Shanzival #53 Posted Oct 18 2014 - 23:48

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View Postzloykrolik, on Oct 18 2014 - 16:13, said:

From what I read in "The Tank Killers", Harry Yeide's book on TD's, the problem was that the TD battalions didn't really function as the doctrine called for them to.

 

Not that they were a failure, they were a positive value in combat, but they didn't get used in the manner that they were developed for. In Yeide's words: "a successful failure."

 

TDs often got used as tanks because they were for the most part tanks, just with worse armor and often a better gun.

 

My suspicion is that the improved performance of the TDs compared to regular M4s is due more to the training of the crew and the ammo loadouts they would receive more than anything else. I believe the TD crews would actually trade for HE rounds because they were more often than not shooting HE at soft targets rather than engaging tanks.

 

Edit: The M6 was fielded back home to help sell war bonds.


Edited by President_Romney, Oct 18 2014 - 23:49.


StrohsVonPabst #54 Posted Oct 19 2014 - 00:17

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Chieftain,Thank you very much for your polite response.You make a good debate,and did not behave in an insulting manner.Again I state that if I came off a bit crotchety,it was not my intent.I prefer being polite but as I grow older,I am becoming that cranky old man we all have met at least once.Very professional and informative,I gave you a positive,and maybe "slapping a corpse" was a bit harsh,I take it back.Two Bronze Stars is an impressive feat,I congratulate you.I am a touch befuddled why people gave me so many negs,because Mr.Nobody sort of disagreed with the Chieftain?? I thought I had been rather polite.and if we always agreed,well that would kinda Twilight Zone-ish,like that episode in which people were not allowed to think bad thoughts around that kid who had god-like powers.So my peers,I cannot disagree with Chief,even if I do so in a polite way? Will you wish me away into the cornfield or turn me into a Jack-in the-Box? BTW,if you can get around to making an Italian tank video,that would be awesome.Not Italian myself but their presence in the war is sadly overlooked in computer war games.They deserve some credit for fighting a war that,it would seem,most of them were not happy about.

The_Chieftain #55 Posted Oct 19 2014 - 00:44

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Don't worry too much about the negreps. I would like to think that people won't negrep for simple disagreement, but that the cause was the logic behind the argument: Appeal to authority doesn't fly very well in this subforum.

express556 #56 Posted Oct 19 2014 - 01:10

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 I think Lt Cooper was saying in his book the early M4 Shermans where not as well armed or protected and did not have the wider tracks for off road ability

as the later Shermans did His point of view may have been a lot of US Army losses may have been reduced if the newer better improved Shermans and Pershings 

were more available.

 

He did like the Super Pershing with its 90mm gun and thicker armor saying how so much better it was at knocking out German armor.

 

One of his jobs was to recover and repair the damaged Shermans and study knocked out German tanks.

Maybe he just wanted to teach from his experience so future losses in the next wars could be avoided.

 

I talked to some WW2 Army Tank veterans one told me they encountered a German tank and destroyed it with a shot that bounced up off something a rock or the road maybe and penetrated the tanks bottom

I thought that was interesting.

 

 

 

 



TigerDude33 #57 Posted Oct 19 2014 - 01:15

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View Postthandiflight, on Oct 18 2014 - 23:31, said:

In science one of the greatest sources of bias when evaluating "evidence" is "authority". The assumption that somebody, on account of experience or position, is correct is just that, an assumption. All too frequently anecdotal observation replaces carefully constructed evaluation and all too frequently "authority" rejects the real, validated evidence. Cooper provides anecdotal observation and does not disclose potential sources of bias. He is entitled to his opinion and he expresses it but that does not make it historically or scientifically valid. We all love the underdog. To think that our side won despite inferior equipment has a "feel good" factor and makes it attractive to the entertainment industry. Thus Hollywood, Discovery Channel and the History Channel are not good sources of accurate information, they are sources of entertainment that just so happen to contain enough factual material to make them interesting and convincing. Like Cooper's book however they do not constitute evidence. The fact remains is that the M4 was one of the most influential tanks in history but its legacy has been maligned. It did what it was meant to do, it worked. Ask any combat soldier what he wants - something that is fancy or something that works reliably and I know what my answer would be.

 

Major Elston's comments are hardly "scientific."

M4A3E8sherman #58 Posted Oct 19 2014 - 01:21

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View Postpetenh, on Oct 18 2014 - 13:42, said:

 

 

You are missing the point about artillery. Artillery kills infantry. Infantry protects tanks.

Only he didn't say anything about that.

 

And if it's the foot soldiers that have to protect the Tigers from getting KO'd by Shermans, then it seems that the Tigers are not, in fact, the better tanks.

Block Quote

 Good article.  Does quite a bit to counter myths surrounding the German armor.  Couple of caveats thou.  After 1943, the Allied won air superiority over the skies of Europe.  Again I need help with citing sources but the German Army cited majority of their battlefield loses attributed more to air to ground attacks. I think up to 75% of their Armor losses western front -late 1944 (either direct destruction, being disabled, abandoned etc.) are result of allied air power.

Allied reports found that aircraft were responsible for very few armor kills. Rockets and bombs were too inaccurate to hit tank sized targets with any degree to reliability, while the notion of destroying 25+ ton Panzers with .50 cal MGs is ridiculous. 

 



Meplat #59 Posted Oct 19 2014 - 02:11

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View Postmisterbagel, on Oct 18 2014 - 17:53, said:

OP removed.

 

~GM/Mod Teams

 

I know of two incidents where an M1 was disabled (inadvertently) at YPG, one involved a 25mm TP-T and the other a .50" tracer. Both hit a part of the louvered rear area and skipped into the engine.

 

Supposedly this has been rectified, but the person who related these to me (a sadly now late senior small arms tester at APG then YPG) mentioned how he'd looked at the rear of the still new M1 and pointed out the potential for it to occur.



M4A3E8sherman #60 Posted Oct 19 2014 - 02:20

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Block Quote

Look at the overall picture.  Strafing and bombing runs by P47 and Tempest were terrifying to the German Army in Normandy.  A tank is practically useless when the vehicle supply convoys have to disperse or be destroyed constantly.  This is very well documented.  None of the German attack convoys reached their operation area in full strength.  When you do not have air superiority, you do not have any initiative in battle.  No matter how good your commander and/or your tanks are?  The Germans have to resort to towing their own fuel trailers behind their tanks to reach their assigned areas.  What about the fuel supply depot, and marshaling train yards? This is the point German Army was making and also the point I am making.   

This is what was said:

Block Quote

  I think up to 75% of their Armor losses western front -late 1944 (either direct destruction, being disabled, abandoned etc.) are result of allied air power.

Not 75% of their armor losses in the western front were due to a lack of supplies thanks to the destruction of convoys by airpower. It was implied that the aircraft were knocking the tanks out, not that the aircraft were destroying the convoys that the tanks were dependent on.

Block Quote

 To dispute the allied air power based on 50 cal "cannot" destroy a 25 ton tank? Lets see what happens to a tank gets strafed on the back of the engine deck? Even a modern tank such as M1 Abrams?

The standard .50 round could penetrate about 27mm of armor from 90 degrees at 100m. The top armor of German tanks was 25mm, and aircraft were presumably not shooting it straight down.

 






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