Over at the World of Tanks site, tanker and researcher Nicholas Moran has posted his thoughts regarding the first 100 years of tank history. It’s a good read, we have re-posted the start of the article below with a link to the full piece.
The Chieftain’s Hatch: 100-Year Icon
We’re now celebrating the second century of the tank, 100 years since the debut of tank combat in Flers-Courcelette (though the monument that marks the introduction of tank combat is in the nearby town of Pozières).
It’s no secret I’m kind of fond of tanks, and that I consider it quite fortunate that an object of my interest has also been my job, both in military and civilian service. But what has the tank actually become, and why is it so appealing, 100 years later?
Many moons ago, I picked up the book Tank by Patrick Wright, who took a slightly different tack than most folks in that he focused not so much on the technical or operational side of tanks, but instead more on the cultural and psychological aspects. The book received mediocre reviews because of this, but it’s worth reflecting upon its premise.
The tank is the symbol of land power. it’s usually the first image in one’s mind when thinking of modern battles. But it’s not the most important component of land power; that’s still the “poor bloody infantryman” (PBI) and his rifle. So, of all the various pieces that make up a modern army, why has the tank come out on top?