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Everything posted by Ariete!

  1. Ariete!

    Ajax Issues

    I really try to resist declinism but it’s increasingly difficult not to conclude humans are becoming stupider. How on earth is it possible for a tracked vehicle’s automotive design to go so insanely wrong at this point in technological history??? If as Stuart states the turret works well, it should be relatively easy to mate to a decent existing tracked chassis.
  2. I’ve always felt that the US reaction to the Suez expedition was ultimately a terrible mistake.
  3. Such a long road march sounds untypical and odd... My understanding is that nearly all ‘strategic’ movement of infantry divisions (which, at any rate, would have had some vehicles and carts+horses not to mention artillery) would be by ship/train, depending. Marches would typically occur once at least at army-level rear echelon.
  4. Is the idea that the 30mm turret covers some of the fire support requirement and separate M8-equipped units supplement it?
  5. Honestly, there is one (1) unit with those Pumas... why add a whole new type?
  6. An interesting statistic is the methodologically stable, long run polling series for POTUSes where people are asked if they approve of how the Prez is doing their job. Notwithstanding significant noise in-term and between presidents, there is a clearly descending time trend. Unless we postulate that the presidents keep getting worse, it suggests increasing disillusionment, partisanship (arguably) and cynicism.
  7. Once again, looking past some of the little dogfight, some rather well made points. Because Fascism was effects-first and ideology ex-post, it was inherently protean and difficult to pin down. I don’t think it’s entirely reductive to limit the definition to Mussolini’s movement and ones directly based on it. Historical contextualisation, I think, can help us understand and therefore define it. 1. Operationally, it builds on and innovates from 19th c. style (para)military coups and as such not socially revolutionary, typically a reaction to a state of disorder in the presence of a socially radical threat (such as communism). 2. It is nationalistic, authoritarian, militaristic, broadly post-monarchic and socially reactionary but ambiguous re. established religion. I think the more populist as well as corporatist/syndicalist aspects, though very significant, reflect a broad trend in all advanced economies at that time (admittedly to varying degrees) and indeed those tendencies represented the “carrot” side of the competitive alternative they offered vs Marxism. Regarding current conditions, I think the attraction of full-on Fascism in the richer, more established democracies is questionable. In less mature representative systems there is more evidence of it. Several successor states of the USSR display some characteristics of it, arguably.
  8. Interesting parallel there with the Italian Army. They installed the RRs on the AR59 jeeps (which, including crew, ammo, etc. placed them above their design max wt.). When the army transitioned to the arguably more feeble AR76 jeep series, they retained the old 59s, in motorised infantry, just for the M40 RRs. This lasted through the cold war...
  9. The Italian Carabinieri (formerly an arm within the army and more recently a separate branch of service) had something like 11 mobile battalion sized units with protected wheeled vehicles and M113s which were primarily dedicated to riot control. They also used to have two fully armoured battalion sized units with APCs, MBTs, etc. which had a primarily military combat role but could of course be used in an anti-insurgency role. The Polizia di Stato had armoured cars after WW2 but transitioned to less military-type protected vehicles.
  10. The CR42 was clearly obsolete and has been noted reflects misguided priorities on the part of the Regia Aeronautica fighter community. In any case, when discussing Italian WW2 procurement one must always bear in mind the appallingly low production rates which made the equally outsized delays in transitioning to new models particularly costly. Thus some obsolete models were kept in production longer than seems reasonable through the late 30s and the war.
  11. All very informative, thanks. did the two sides *actually* ever come close to launching?
  12. Two things: first of all I congratulate you guys. I can’t think of any other social media where this topic could be discussed so well and without devolving into @“£#% Second: the canonical work on the economics if slavery (particularly in the US) is “without consent or contract “ which won the ‘Nobel prize’ for its cliometric methodology. The basic answer to why very little slavery in modern Europe is, as already written, lack of need and Christianity (with eyes conveniently shut about the distant colonies).
  13. Ariete!

    Centauro 2

    The Centauro 1 was designed as a high-mobility, manoeuvre-level protected fires support system against threats that might materialise away from the iron curtain, where most of the tanks were deployed. Overtaken by events, it has been widely used as a heavily armed ‘cavalry’ vehicle and been considered very successful. The Centauro 2 is an updated/upgraded version. The choice of 120 is partly commonality and partly growth potential. High-velocity, large caliber guns obviously vastly overmatch medium-light cannon in range and lethality against hard targets. At any rate, the Freccia carries a 25mm.
  14. For budgetary reasons, Italy kept the 104s going (with updates, etc.) well into the 1980s (early 90s). In Italian service it was often referred to as "Spillone" ("Big Pushpin" but also, arguably, "Prick" due to its pointy shape). It was basically a hot rod but with short legs and an indifferent radar. Essentially a short-range, quick-reaction, ground-controlled interceptor. The problem with the F-104 in NATO use was that Lockheed, as part of a huge, Europe-wide scandal, bribed governments in the 1960s/70s to buy F-104s and C-130s The F-104G was meant to be used as a light-bomber / interdiction / strike aircraft and, as many have pointed out,. it had limited load-range and was hard to handle.
  15. BTW, regarding comments about being built in the US. Fincantieri will, of course, be building these in the US (Wisconsin, I think).
  16. I'm very much on board with what 'Zuk' and others have stated. I think that what you want is an 'IFV' that can carry 8 dismounts and has a turreted armament in the 25-30 mm range. There are several models now that can give you that, I think/ Given the typical forestation / urbanisation levels of many theatres, I think the Ideal Armour (combined arms) unit is two Coys of IFVs and two Coys of MBTs. As others have stated, that's armoured forces; if you;'re getting in a lot of 'close' terrain w=you will need more leg infantry, of course. On the 'wheeled IFVs', there is clearly a trend there. (France, Italy, the US with the 30mm Strykers). I think a decent sized army should be able to deploy both tracked (MB+tracked IFV) and somewhat wider-ranging but less tactically mobile) wheeled units with wheeled IFVs / MGS.
  17. A pretty comprehensive critique and a difficult one to rebut. :-)
  18. Happy to be corrected but the thing that always amazed me teh msot abotu th whole operation is how a batallion-sized, training-unit commander in teh sapce of an hour sets up stop-gap positions that, whatever the difficulteuis of ana rilanding, stop 1-2 brigade of elite light infantry dead intehir tracks, giving teh rest of teh Jerries time to bring in serious forces. I cannot think of any other simialr situation with another army where they woudl have reacted as quickly and as effectively given what they had.
  19. I've read the book and recommend it. Amazing fellow; truly. I won't spoil "the ending" for you but it's also v. interesting.
  20. On the IFV concept, per se. - Where they have been used, their relatively high protection and substantial firepower has been highly appreciated. - prominent programs for recent APCs (Styker, Namer, etc.) have tended to get retrofitted with.. An AC!! - If you are deploying large armoured formations, I'm assuming it's armour-friendly terrain. In any case, in an assault, the fire support element should be = or larger than close assault one. IOW, you don't need huge numbers of dismounts. You need firepower. As for procurement process, yeh, it's messsed up. It strikes me that the CV90 is probably one of the better balanced designs, albeit with a more modern weapon. Lastly, thanks for those size comparison pictures. Some of those wheelie things are the size of a barn!!
  21. Simply cannot believe that after all history people still doubt the usefulness of proper aircraft carriers. Even in the (ill considered) Lybia campaign, the mission turnaround times posed a strain. As a NATO type, I think it's ace that the UK is actually proceding with 2 carriers and (eventually) and air wing.
  22. Well, the take-over of Albania, as absurd as it was (given they were already an inoffensive protectorate, de facto) might be justified from the innately expansionistic/militaristic Mussolinian viewpoint, but Greece was a stupid, costly gamble, given that the ports of entry in Albania could barely sustain an army smaller than the one they were attacking, in mountanous terrain. On top of that, the degree of cant required to call Greece, of all countries, an enemy of Italy was stupendous. Never mind the (militarily disappointing) stab in the back to France. By the time things kicked off against the Brits in Africa, Italy had sustained five variously disappointing campaigns (Ethipia, Spain, Albania, Greece, France) with weak to iirminal casi belli. Soldiers follow orders but if you read correspondence from the period, there was real internal unease at Musso's nasty little war escapades.
  23. Very valid point about italian production only going to 1943. In the specific instance of heavy weaponry, IIRC they were running up against raw material and other shortages actually, so a German-style (even in proportion ) ramp-up in 44-45 would not have been possible, IMO. Since all the factories were in the german-occupied North of Italy, some pieces were finished under their control after Sept. 8 and were used by the Germans here and there. Very interesting, by the way, the original post.
  24. WHile it seems common in the English-language bilbiography to rather criticise British arms production quality and (less so) quantity, the outpur of Britain (after all, a major industrial power) was tremendous. It is only in comparison to the breathtaking US ramp-up that it appears more modest. Just counting tanks and assault guns, wartime production was: USSR 120 k * USA 108 k Brit. Empire 48 k vs. Germany 67 k Italy 3 k ** Japan 4k * As is well known, Soviet vehicle production focused on AFVs. Overall US production dwarfed that of the USSR. ** That figure for Italian tank production (never mind the quality...) in itself tells you much of what you need to know about Mussolini's insanity in starting a North African campaign (or indeed, any campaign).
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