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Thread: What is your opinion on the M4 Sherman?

  1. #101
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    Re: What is your opinion on the M4 Sherman?

    The tank engagement was in Cologne. Looked it up because I could remember.

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  2. #102
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    Re: What is your opinion on the M4 Sherman?

    Quote Originally Posted by Moonglow View Post
    POS tank
    That's what my uncle thought of the Sherman. He hated that tank. He, and his buddies, thought they had been lied to back during training about how "capable" the Sherman was going to be in combat. My uncle served on a Sherman crew and went ashore on D-Day. He was wounded but back after about a month. If you didn't have five Shermans to attack a Tiger or even a Panzer IV you just didn't stand a chance. He said the only way was to distract them and get around back. Distracting them cost a lot of American lives. The Sherman's weren't called "Ronsons" for nothing.

    They did do well against the Japanese. But not in Europe. I understand they were undersized, under powered and under gunned in order to make it possible for them to fit on rail cars and be hauled across railroad bridges here in the States. Only later when they were up-armored and up-gunned later in the war did they do better against the German tanks. Even then, they weren't a match.

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    Re: What is your opinion on the M4 Sherman?

    I used to know a tank commander from Patton's 3rd Army. He graduated in 1942 and entered the theater as a green butterbar in August or September, stationed in England. He missed the capture of Sicily but saw some action in Italy prior to the Normandy invasion. His arrival in 3rd Corps was concurrent with Patton's. So, he was in all of the French campaign and was deeply involved in the Ardennes counter attack. We had some chats about what it was like working under Patton.

    One thing he said was that a Sherman was very good at what Patton wanted it to do--take and occupy ground in support of infantry. It was not suited for the way some other commanders wanted to use it, as a spearhead or counter to the Panzers. He's not around any more. However, I suspect that he would tell everyone that it was what it was--a light, multi-purpose tank.

  4. #104
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    Re: What is your opinion on the M4 Sherman?

    Quote Originally Posted by Waddy View Post
    That's what my uncle thought of the Sherman. He hated that tank. He, and his buddies, thought they had been lied to back during training about how "capable" the Sherman was going to be in combat. My uncle served on a Sherman crew and went ashore on D-Day. He was wounded but back after about a month. If you didn't have five Shermans to attack a Tiger or even a Panzer IV you just didn't stand a chance. He said the only way was to distract them and get around back. Distracting them cost a lot of American lives. The Sherman's weren't called "Ronsons" for nothing.

    They did do well against the Japanese. But not in Europe. I understand they were undersized, under powered and under gunned in order to make it possible for them to fit on rail cars and be hauled across railroad bridges here in the States. Only later when they were up-armored and up-gunned later in the war did they do better against the German tanks. Even then, they weren't a match.
    I call bull**** on the claim you needed 5 Shermans to kill a Panzer IV. They were not undersized, under powered, or under gunned compared to any other medium tank in the world. They had trouble fighting heavy tanks, but *every* medium tank had trouble fighting heavy tanks.

  5. #105
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    Re: What is your opinion on the M4 Sherman?

    Quote Originally Posted by swing_voter View Post
    America's iconic tank of WWII. What is your opinion of it?
    It was a decent medium tank, reliable, and cheap and quick to produce.

    Of course, most people seem to have no real idea of what the role of a tank like this actually is in warfare. And it is not to attack other tanks, that is the role of the Tank Destroyer, they were made to support Infantry. And as a medium tank of the era they were inadequate to go against Heavy Tanks, like the Tiger series. But that was never their mission, that mission was to support Infantry.

    I always tend to get a bit ticked, when people try to look at tank battles during WWII, because that was never their role. The M10, M36, and M18 Hellcat were "Tank Destroyers", with the explicit mission of going after enemy tanks. Tanks like the M4 Sherman were only there for infantry support, but because both sides generally followed the same doctrine (send tanks with infantry when possible) they did end up in battles against each other.

    Today, things are very different. Most modern armies have settled on a single Heavy Tank model that performs all roles, but that was not the case at the time.
    War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. - John Stuart Mill

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