Monday, May 15, 2017

What is the real state of US tankmanship?

Below the Turret Ring Blog said this about the Strong Europe Tank Challenge...
In 2017 the US Army had only one single platoon competing in the Strong Europe Tank Challenge; previously two US platoons tried their best to win the trophy. Back then the M1A2 SEP v2 tanks managed to only secure the fifth and sixth place, beating out only the M-84s of the Slovenian platoon. For the second time in a row, the US Army used the most modern of all tanks (the M1A2 SEP v2, which first entered service in 2011), but again failed to beat at least some of the Leopard 2 users with much older hardware. This means that the either the training of the US tank crews is lackluster, or that the M1A2 SEP v2 still requires some work in order to reach the same level of performance as the older German designs. Based on the very few known scores, the US tank platoon did perform slightly worse in offensive actions (gunnery, target spotting) than either German-speaking team, while also being a lot worse in precision driving. Specifically the offensive actions should be among the events, that are most affected by equipment.
My questions are as follows...

1.  Is this a realistic measure of "tanks"?

2.  Is this a realistic measure of US "tankmanship"?

3.  If it is then why are we consistently performing so poorly?

4.  Does the M1A2Sep v2 suffer some type of inherent disadvantage that is keeping it from winning the top spot?

5.  I've seen it with my own eyes...many times we let allies "win" in order to foster morale....if this is the case here then it's having a detrimental affect on our own forces and adjustments need to be made.

6.  Are these scripted competition worth the squeeze?  If its a morale building exercise and we're not putting every effort into taking first place should we even participate?

7.  How about competitions across the board.  Best infantry squad (conventional), Best infantry squad (Special Ops), Best artillery, Best mortar, Best motor T...etc...

All in all I don't consider this a big deal but I do wonder about our continuing "failure" in this challenge.  Additionally, if it is being put forward as a "we don't need to win" then word needs to be passed down the line to at least our armor crews to preserve morale, and if its a case of our doing our best then we need to start a kick ass training program to get some rock star tankers into next years competition.

Winning isn't everything...its the only thing! 

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