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This illustrated Worldwide Equipment Guide (WEG) describes the spectrum of worldwide systems and system trends in the Contemporary Operational Environment (COE), serving as an authoritative "encyclopedia" of weapons around the world. This is the newest edition revised in 2011. This handbook is one of a series that describes a contemporary Opposing Force (OPFOR) for training U.S. Military commanders, staffs, and units. Together, these handbooks outline an OPFOR than can cover the entire spectrum of military and paramilitary capabilities against which the U.S. Military must train to ensure success in any future conflict.
Part Four includes the section of Volume One covering tanks.
Contents: Main Battle Tanks * Al Khalid * AMX-30 * Challenger 2 * Chieftain Mk 5, Mk 12 * Leopard 1A1 * Leopard 2A4, 2A5, and 2A6 * M60A1/M60A3 T-34 * T-55AMV * T-62M * T-64B * T-72A and T-72M * T-72B and Other Upgrade Tanks * T-72BM * T-80B * T-80U * T-90A * T-90S * Chinese Tanks, Nomenclatures and Features * Type 59-II and Al Zarrar * Type 96 and Type 96G * Type 99 and Type 99A2
The modern lethal battlefield still demands heavy armored vehicles to conduct assault and provide heavy direct-fire support in high-risk areas. This chapter offers a representative sampling of AFVs in use today for combat assault. The selection is not comprehensive, but reflects a mix of systems available for the OPFOR and likely to be encountered in varying levels of conflict. The selection is also used to highlight trends within this field of weapons. Vehicles used for combat assault in this Guide were previously divided into two categories—main battle tanks (MBTs) and light tanks/assault vehicles. Most tanks of 30 tons or more are considered MBTs. The increasing lethality of antitank weapons has driven an increasing demand for more and heavier armor on tanks. More MBTs leading armored forces have grown from the category of medium tanks (30-59 metric tons) into the weight category of heavy tanks (60-80 metric tons). Tanks may perform a variety of tactical roles, such as fire support; but their primary value is their ability to lead tactical assaults against adversary forces. Main battle tanks are tracked, heavily armored vehicles with guns of generally 75 mm or more. Among modern trends in AFVs are: increased variety of systems worldwide, and a wider application of these systems for varied roles and missions on the battlefield. As a result, technology sharing and proliferation of upgrade packages have blurred lines among vehicles used for assault, anti-armor, combat reconnaissance and fire support missions. Another trend is increased weight for all types of armored vehicles.