The Vietnam War formally began in September of 1959, with the arrival of American advisers, though the strength in numbers for the American combat forces did not occur until around 19656. The M48 was the mainstay of the American armored forces at the time and the Patton become the heaviest tank to be fielded by the US Army during the conflict. Despite her armor protection and suitable main gun, the M48 was thrown into a war for which it was not directly intend. While expecting to face off head-to-head against North Vietnamese and Viet Cong armor in tank-verses-tank duels, the M48 was relegated to supporting infantry actions in the dense jungle and suburban fighting to follow. Continue reading
The backdrop for this scene is the epic battle of Kursk, or Operation Citadel, when in the summer of 1943, German and Russian forces clashed in an titanic struggle for supremacy. Each side throwing thousands of tanks and aircraft into battle as Tigers and T-34s engaged one another in swirling, mortal conflict. In historical terms the Battle of Kursk marked a turning point in the war, the initiative now turning to the favor of the Soviets.