Tank Shots

February 28, 2011 by Legion Magazine
A Leopard tank of the Lord Strathcona’s Horse provides protection for a defensive formation of vehicles in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, December 2006. [PHOTO: SERGEANT DENNIS POWER, ARMY NEWS-SHILO]

A Leopard tank of the Lord Strathcona’s Horse provides protection for a defensive formation of vehicles in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, December 2006.
PHOTO: SERGEANT DENNIS POWER, ARMY NEWS-SHILO

The year was 1916—September—and there was no denying the fear felt by those who faced them for the first time on the Somme. Big and noisy, the tank looked more like a warship than a land weapon. But while these early armoured monstrosities dealt a severe blow to German morale and proved effective in crossing trenches and wire entanglements, they were slow and prone to mechanical failure. They were also practically useless on soft cratered ground, and easily destroyed by artillery fire. But as the war progressed, so did the tank and by 1918 better tactics for coordinating their use with infantry, artillery and aircraft created better results. Ninety-three years later, modern versions of the battle tank continue to prove their mettle on the battlefield, including those deployed by Canadians in Afghanistan. The following is a pictorial salute to Canadian tanks in action. Enjoy.

Armoured soldiers from 3rd Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment Battle Group, rumble toward their assigned position in Afghanistan aboard a Leopard 2 battle tank, November 2008. [PHOTO: CORPORAL JAMES NIGHTINGALE, JTF-AFG ROTO 6]

Armoured soldiers from 3rd Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment Battle Group, rumble toward their assigned position in Afghanistan aboard a Leopard 2 battle tank, November 2008.
PHOTO: CORPORAL JAMES NIGHTINGALE, JTF-AFG ROTO 6

Tanks of the Sherbrooke Fusiliers move up to assist the infantry in clearing a  German town, March 1945. [PHOTO: ERNEST J. DeGUIRE, LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—PA192258]

Tanks of the Sherbrooke Fusiliers move up to assist the infantry in clearing a German town, March 1945.
PHOTO: ERNEST J. DeGUIRE, LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—PA192258

Canadian infantry follow a British-made tank into battle during the First World War. The behemoths were first introduced to the battlefield on Sept. 15, 1916. [PHOTO: LEGION MAGAZINE ARCHIVES]

Canadian infantry follow a British-made tank into battle during the First World War. The behemoths were first introduced to the battlefield on Sept. 15, 1916.
PHOTO: LEGION MAGAZINE ARCHIVES

Two Leopard tanks lead a convoy of armoured vehicles west of Kandahar, Afghanistan, December 2006. [PHOTO: SERGEANT DENNIS POWER, ARMY NEWS-SHILO]

Two Leopard tanks lead a convoy of armoured vehicles west of Kandahar, Afghanistan, December 2006.
PHOTO: SERGEANT DENNIS POWER, ARMY NEWS-SHILO

Canadian-made Ram tanks in 1943. [LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—WRC-3176]

Canadian-made Ram tanks in 1943.
LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—WRC-3176

A Leopard tank blasts away at a target during a training exercise involving members of the Lord Strathcona’s Horse and Royal 22nd Regiment at Fort Bliss, Texas. [PHOTO: CORPORAL MARC-ANDRE GAUDREAULT, PHOTO SECTION CFB VALCARTIER]

A Leopard tank blasts away at a target during a training exercise involving members of the Lord Strathcona’s Horse and Royal 22nd Regiment at Fort Bliss, Texas.
PHOTO: CORPORAL MARC-ANDRE GAUDREAULT, PHOTO SECTION CFB VALCARTIER

Well-camouflaged, a tank of the Ontario Regiment advances on San Angelo, Italy, May 1944. [PHOTO: ALEXANDER STIRTON, LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—PA114462]

Well-camouflaged, a tank of the Ontario Regiment advances on San Angelo, Italy, May 1944.
PHOTO: ALEXANDER STIRTON, LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—PA114462

While in the turret of his Leopard tank, a tanker provides security for other armoured vehicles in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, December 2006. [PHOTO: SERGEANT DENNIS POWER, ARMY NEWS-SHILO]

While in the turret of his Leopard tank, a tanker provides security for other armoured vehicles in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, December 2006.
PHOTO: SERGEANT DENNIS POWER, ARMY NEWS-SHILO

A South Alberta Regiment tank waits near Calcar, Germany, February 1945. [PHOTO: J.H. SMITH, LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—PA113675]

A South Alberta Regiment tank waits near Calcar, Germany, February 1945.
PHOTO: J.H. SMITH, LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—PA113675

Sherman tanks of B Squadron, Lord Strathcona’s Horse, on the move in Korea, July 16, 1952. [PHOTO: PAUL E. TOMELIN, LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—PA115496]

Sherman tanks of B Squadron, Lord Strathcona’s Horse, on the move in Korea, July 16, 1952.
PHOTO: PAUL E. TOMELIN, LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—PA115496

The blazing sun silhouettes a Leopard tank in the dust near Mushan, Afghanistan, August 2009. [PHOTO: CORPORAL JONATHAN JOHANSEN]

The blazing sun silhouettes a Leopard tank in the dust near Mushan, Afghanistan, August 2009.
PHOTO: CORPORAL JONATHAN JOHANSEN

Muddy and battle-scarred tanks on the Western Front, July 1917. [PHOTO: LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—PA001493]

Muddy and battle-scarred tanks on the Western Front, July 1917.
PHOTO: LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES CANADA—PA001493

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