Battle Tanks to Afghanistan

According to reports the US has deployed M1 Abram Battle Tanks to Afghanistan.   With the latest announcements that the US may be in Afghanistan till at least 2014 and possibly longer what does this mean for the strategy in Afghanistan?  If your serious about a war a good sign is to bring the big guns.  While aircraft and drones certainly do damage the big guns on the ground send a strong signal.  I can only hope it’s not just a signal but a change in strategy.  Counter Insurgency is fine and necessary but I believe we’ve let too much pass now for just COIN operations.

M1_Abrams_Tank_3

Unfortunately until we strongly address the Afghan corruption issue we still may be fighting an up hill battle. 

When military planners and politicians stopped thinking about overwhelming force and took the path of proportional response we only added the time necessary to win a war.  This also adds to the death, misery and destruction of moral and faith in the local populace.  Wars must be finished as quickly as possible and using only minimal forces does not accomplish this. Defeat must be total to change the mindset of the enemy. 

So we’ll see what happens

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7 thoughts on “Battle Tanks to Afghanistan

  1. What is the big deal. The Marines are only bringing their first 14 M1A1 tanks.

    ISAF has had tanks for some time. Until now they were from countries other than America. With the Dutch and Canadians removing their armored vehicles from the South, ISAF needs a few new armored vehicles.

  2. The press mystifies me.

    To my mind tracked infantry fighting vehicles are more valuable than Tanks in the South. That is why only “14” M1A1 Tanks are being added.

  3. Obviously you’ve never seen what an abrams can do in open country like the ‘stan. Yes ISAF countries have had armoured vehicles, but their very limited rules of engagement has prevented them from using them to their full effectiveness. This war needs far more real warriors and a few less coffee shop intellectuals.

  4. Chuck, the Canadians used their armored vehicles 🙂 So did the Dutch in some critical battles.

    Tanks are potentially useful in parts of the South, unlike in most of Afghanistan because of terrain.

    In Helmand, even platoon sized attacks are becoming increasingly rare. Tanks are good for close fire support. Are tanks better at close fire support than tracked APCs? Have been told that they are better than mortars, artillery, helos and turboprop.

  5. This isn’t just about armor or tanks, it’s about a mindset. ISAF has used their tanks in a limited way. Tanks are very good fire support. The M1 Abrams isn’t some old sherman where you need to see the target and fire for effect. Actually it was fire and hope.

    Morters can’t be moved quickly, APCs? Not enough fire power, Artillery is good but can’t follow up, niether can aircraft. If you need on the ground infantry, that goes hand in hand with tanks. No, not in them. That would be rather tight.

    Don’t get me wrong APCs are great. But it’s still not the point. Tanks send a powerful message about what we are willing to do. A tank rolling down the road is a lot more intimidating that an APC, It even makes a Bradley look weak and they are far from that.

    When you decide to fight to win you bring in all your resources and don’t go small footprint. Sorry Donald R. was wrong about that stategy for this type of fight.

    But never fear we are sending the tanks in a very small number so we’ll have to wait and see how effectively they are used.

    Thanks for the comments guys. At least someone is reading. 😉

  6. Canadians, Dutch & Danes have made excellent use of Leopard 2 Main Battle Tanks in Afghanistan. One Marine Armor company is not going to change the war. Deploying, fueling, & maintaining 14 tanks in Central Asia 700 miles inland from a sea port of debarkation is going to be very expensive. Somebody has decided that what the tanks bring to the fight is worth it.

    Hope that company has an embed to tell their true war stories to the public.

  7. Because we all know how well the embeds have treated the Marines. Short of Laura Ingram you can keep them all away from me. They’re all looking for their Pulitzer and don’t care how they twist a story to get it. BTW how much coverage was given to that Marine when he was acquitted? I can tell you. NONE.

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