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On the way

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  1. So, it does seem the US Army started dedicated tank uniform later. When I was with the Singapore Army in the mid 80s, we were issued this tank overall. And it had been in issue since early 80s or late 70s. It was also used by the IDF and the Royal Tank Corp in various versions. You can see a thin flap below the neck and about parallel with the shoulders. If you lifted up the flap there was a zipper, and if you unzipped it, there was a strap that you could pull on that would hoist the whole body up if you were incapacitated in the tank. Had lots of pockets and pouches. The belt held 2 mags if I recall for the CAR-15
  2. OIC. Thanks for the information. I keep seeing this, so I assume it was just infantry uniform the tankers were wearing.
  3. Yes, I see your point. The non invasion of Russia must be couple with the non declaration of war against the US, hence keeping out 2 key combatants against the Germans. Leaving England as the sole major antagonist against them. That way, they don't get bombed daily, and nor do they have the threat of atomic bomb on them (unless the US sells England a Tall Boy in 1945. But by then, the Germans themselves might have developed an atomic weapon if left unmolested by aerial bombing. Land lease would still exist for England, but perhaps scaled down due to commitment to Asia?
  4. Not necessarily. They can leave England to rot on the vine a little while. Even the support for convoy supplies from the US to the UK would have waned when the US entered the war against Japan in Dec 1941. The major thing is that Germany also refrain from declaring war on the US.
  5. I see. But given the state of the Russian army vis a vis equipment and leadership, I don't think it would have gone well for the Russian if they had attacked in 1942. Plus they would have to go through Western Poland, which was in effect a buffer between the 2 countries. I always thought there was a revenge factor for the invasion of France, and war with the UK due to the post WW1 reparations and humiliation after the loss of WW1.
  6. I think their army was so disorganized due to Stalin's purges that if it were to happen, it would have been at least 5 years in the making. Even then, on the face of it, Germany had a lot of relationship with the Russians, eg training, trade, etc. Plus seeing the effectiveness of the German army in the invasion of western europe, I am not sure what enthusiasm they would have had to attack Germany.
  7. I see what you are saying. It might have taken 2 non events for the Germans to potentially remain in Western Europe till today. 1) No invasion of Russia 2) No declaration of war on the US. Then u would avoid the US bomber raids and perhaps have to content with only the US supplied convoys. But by Dec 1941, the US attentions would have turned to Asia anyway.
  8. I tried to do a search for this topic. And the information and theories is rather sparse on it. I know you guys are some of the most informed military historians and experts on the planet. What do you think would have been a likely outcome today? Would German be the national language of France, Holland, etc.? Hitler of course would be dead by now, but his successors and his National Socialist party would still be around. Would they wait for the Communism to dissolve like it did 40 years after WW2? If Barbarossa was not launched, and the troops and resources diverted to the Mediterranean TO and the capture of the Suez Canal, Gibraltar, and the oil fields, I don't see how the Brits could have continued in the fight. I think the Russians were still selling resources to the Germans under the German Russo Pact as part of the division of Poland. So, they could have enlarged their U-Boat fleet and strangled the Brits. Of course, not declaring war against the US would help too. They would not need to divert resources to an Atlantic Wall, nor to the defence of the Germany from air attacks by the RAF and the USAAF. The issue of the concentration camps is problematic and the prospects of any one being rescued in those camps would be zero, as no camps would be liberated. Not only that, we can be assured that more people would be marched to their deaths post 1945. If the Germans had been diplomatically able to keep the US out of the war, I think they would still be running Western Europe today. I don't see any critical impediment to this. The National Socialist ideology in what ever form, would still exist today.
  9. I have not seen any US Army tanker, or for that reason any USMC tanker in a dedicated tank uniform at all. Usually, they appear to be wearing standard issue infantry uniform when operating the tank. Why is this? Other armies have a fire retardant overall for their tank crews. I was issued one myself, with a special handle behind the neck, so that I could be pulled from my tank if incapacitated. Does the US military have any such uniforms for their tank or AFV crews? Or is it the practice to wear what the infantry wears. I see this goes all the way back to WW2.
  10. My main concerns with the SAR-21 were: 1) build in integrated scope of only 1.5X. I don't even know why they put in only 1.5X, its only slightly better then open iron sights. Trilux scopes are 4X as used by the US military and the Canadian army C79 scopes are 3.4X. No picatinney rail option available at that time. 2) Build in laser powered by a AA battery, hard to find AA batteries out in the field if u ever get into a shooting war. 3) Heavier and not well balance as the M16 4) The trigger pull was slush, although I understand they have improved that. Ultimax: I am familiar with the initial production models, which was many moons ago. I hear they have made improvements to later batches. I liked the Ultimax, it was controllable, easy to handle, put out a high volume of fire, much lighter then the GPMG. However, we were issued with the 100 round drum mags and hardly ever fired it with the 30 round Stanag mags. That 100 round mag jammed constantly, I don't think u could get off more then 30 rounds before it jammed. And earlier model springs on the Ultimax was not durable either.
  11. Its all illogical. Its just projects for the sake of projects and to grease the palm of suppliers and to make a few retired Scholar Colonels and scholar Generals look good. The SAF, having never fought a full scale war in over 50 years have had the following as standard issue: 1) FN FAL 2) AR-15 3) SAR 80 4) M-16S1 5) SAR-21. In the same time period, the Russian army has one standard issue i.e AK-47 and US has had one standard issue, the M-16 and its derivatives like the M4. The morons couldn't think for themselves. I am sure the Israelis bend their ears towards a bullpup. BUt not just any bullpup, it has to be one of their own design. LOL. If they wanted a bullpup, they should have just bought the AUG design and build it under license. Its lighter then the SAR-21. I have fired both and I would take the AUG over the SAR any day.
  12. Yup, run by the incompetent bitch who opened her legs to snare a future PeeM. I believe the SR88 and SR88A were the precursor to the Ultimax. They used the same principal. In fact, i think the SR88 would have been a perfectly ok for SAF use. CIS has always relied on foreigners to design its weapon systems. There is no history of firearms design anywhere in SE Asia. In the case of SAR80, it was Frank Waters from Sterling. That is why they cannot think thru an original design. Also, CIS was getting a lot of interference in those days from higher up, particularly Goh Keng Swee. At one point, he wanted CIS to design and build locks for HDB flats. CIS was really a screwed up business in those days and still is under ST. SO, i can understand if they didn't leverage anything at all. The big question was why bother to design the SAR-21 when the patents on the AR-15/M16 had long expired and they could have build them easily with their experience in license producing them.
  13. I was one of the first few batches to be issued this piece of crap. I swear, it was decades ago, but I distinctly remember getting small cuts on the hands and fingers because the finishing was so rough. And the damn thing was heavy as hell too. I went from AR-15 at BMT, to M16/M203 at OCS, to this crap SAR 80 with the folding stock for tank crews at 40SAR and then back to CAR-15 (thankfully) for armour crews. I think they eventually got it right in the SR88. Then for whatever reasons I cannot fathom, Chartered decides to license produce the M16, and pay royalties up the ying yang. The should have just had the SR88 as standard issue.
  14. Yup. Pancho Barnes will be serving it up for all of them at the Happy Bottom Riding Club in heaven
  15. RIP Chuck Yeager. They don't make them like him anymore. An American icon. I guess he is mock dogfighting with Boyd, Ridley, and Bob Hoover in heaven now. Bud Anderson is the last of his contemporaries now, I guess.
  16. The firearm of ridicule I would submit has to be the SAR80, a pathetic attempt at an assault rifle.
  17. Bonholm was occupied by the Soviets in 1954? I was not aware of that. I thought the Germans on Bonholm surrendered to the Western allies after WW2, and the Soviets left after the end of WW2 and it has been in Danish possession since then, up till today. The Indonesians did not allow the west to examine their Migs until after the overthrow of Sokarno in 1967, I believe. Suharto was pro west, and by then the Indonesian supply of Russian weaponry was old and outdated. In any case, the question is not over ownership of the Bonholm Migs, rather over why there seems to be a general acceptance the North Korean Mig was the first one in the hands of the west.
  18. Thanks for the link to the Danish MIg-15s. I can understand if they did not want to fly the Mig for fear of crashing it. Although, I think with the calibre of test pilots like Yeager, and Tom Collins, Ridley, Hoover and all those other guys, I think it would have been pretty safe to fly it. Regardless, they had the Mig for a few weeks before returning them. I would imagine they could have stripped it down and put it back together in that time and at the very least to run static engine tests to figure out the thrust, engine response, etc. As well, they could have gotten some ammo and fired the Mig's guns to get an idea of their range and effectiveness. Not to mention being 100% familiar with the cockpit instrument panel, etc. The way Yeager described it, it was literally the first time the USAF had seen a Mig up close, when they went to Kadena. Everything was starting from step one for them and new to them. I find it extremely weird that no mention was made of the Bonholm Migs which the USAF for sure had their hands on a few months earlier. Even if they had not flown it, I am sure they would have send test pilots from Wright or Muroc out there to examine it. I wonder if I should email Yeager and ask him? Not even sure if he replies to any email or what shape healthwise he is in now.
  19. SO, I have had Chuck Yeager's autobiography for a while now and have read it a couple of times. I am puzzled by the chapter on Out flying the Russians where he described how himself, Al Boyd and Tom Collins when out to Kadena AFB in Japan to test fly a Mig-15 flown to Japan by North Korean Defector Kim Sok Ho (actually it should be spelt NO KUM SOK). Supposedly No defected under the US propaganda campaign called OPeration Moolah, which offered $100K to any pilot that defected to the West with his Mig 15. In this chapter, Yeager described how they flew the Mig-15, a completely strange and dangerous plane and specifically described that as the first Mig-15 the US had got their hands on. Yeager described flying the Mig-15 in February 1954, but No had defected on Sept. 21st 1953. What I am flummoxed about is that there was an earlier defection of a Mig-15. This was the the defection of Franciszek Jarecki on March 5th 1953, flying his Polish Air Force Mig-15 to Bornholm, Denmark. This is more then 6 months before Lt No's defection. And apparently, another Mig-15 flown also by a Polish Air Force pilot named Jaswinski, defected to Bornholm on May 21st 1953. Apparently, Jarecki's Mig-15 was eventually returned to the Poles, some weeks later. I am pretty sure the USAF and NATO must have crawled all over the plane and even flew it. Why then did Yeager say it was the first time they got their hands on one? And why wasn't the Wright Test pilots like Yeager send to Denmark 6 months earlier to fly the Mig-15 instead of to Japan? And from Yeager's description,it seems like they were seeing everything for the first time and figuring out the Mig's systems and performance envelope as they went along. Exactly what did the US and NATO do with those defected Migs in Denmark? Take selfies with them? The Korean War ceasefire was on July 27th 1953. They West could have had time to evaluate the Mig-15, and dessiminated the information about the weaknesses and strengths of the Mig to pilots in Korea by the end of March. The United Nations pilots could have used this information at least for a few months till the armistice was signed in July of 1953. And why run Operation Moolah, when they already had their hands on at least 2 Mig-15s in Denmark?
  20. Interesting that the Philippines decided on a 105MM turret. And not a 120mm turret.
  21. On the AMX-13, at idle, u don't hear too much engine noise. The turret hydraulics are noisy if u are turning the turret. U can converse by shouting. The driver is on his own, he is next to the engine, and that is noisy. At speed, u don't hear the engine that much unless accelerating, but the tracks are loud and u have to converse via the CVC helmet. Firing the main gun is loud. But the recoil lifts the tank up and sets it back down, plus the lack of a bore evacuator leaves a lot of fumes in the turret. This is worse then the noise of the main gun going off.
  22. how many plates did it penetrate?
  23. How many days in the UK and where? 5 days to 1 week. Then getting on the cruise at SOuthampton. So, planning to hit the London museums, and then out to the country for Bovington, Duxford. Probably end in Bovington as southampton is not too far away.
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