Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Turkish Tanks Are Being Decimated In Syria

Sebastien Roblin, War Is Boring: Turkish Tanks Take a Pounding in Syria

Rebels armed with guided missiles punish Ankara’s tank force.

Ankara’s tanks have been in the news a lot this year, whether prowling the streets of the Turkish capital in a failed coup attempt, or taking missile fire from rebel fighters on the Syrian border.

Recently, Turkish armor crossed over into Syria and drove the Islamic State terrorist group from its last holdings along the Turkish border — and also fought with U.S.-backed Kurdish rebels, creating a frustrating diplomatic quandary for the White House.

It’s easy to see why Turkey’s tanks are so active. The country is facing one of its worst geopolitical crises in decades, and it also maintains an enormous tank force — more than 2,400 all told, greater than the tank forces of France, Germany and the United Kingdom combined.

But only Turkey’s 354 German-made Leopard 2A4 tanks are modern designs, and even those date back to 1985.

The vast majority of Turkey’s tanks are American-made M-48 and M-60 Patton tanks. The latter type, which entered service the same year as the Cuban Missile Crisis, is rather long in the tooth. But curiously enough, the M-60 has seen the most combat.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: The above video .... if those are Turkish tanks .... is very revealing on how vulnerable these tanks are.


Anonymous said...

I saw this video a week or so ago, only titled Kurdish fighters using Milan anti tank weapons against Turks, not sure exactly who it is.

Caecus said...

seems like the same logo that was on the IS videos from the battle of Kobane.

mlacix said...

Yep it was IS, and it's a few weeks old. There were some other similar videos shot that show other tanks got ATGM hits. We talked about this subject a few weeks ago, that we passed the time when you could stand on top of a hill or full open terrain with your tank. Everyone will learn that, one way or another.

James said...

" that we passed the time when you could stand on top of a hill or full open terrain with your tank"
Being a silhouette will never take you to a happy place.

RRH said...

Will they send in the infantry? Will Syria become a graveyard of Turks once again?

RRH said...

Or should I say, will the land of Syria become a graveyard of Turks once again?

TWN said...

The AT Weapons in use are amazing, after watching this video I watched several more on you tube, armor is pretty vulnerable, not sure how the future looks for the tank.

mlacix said...

I do not think Turkey will fully commit it's army to any large scale offensive, unless Russia says so. I never had high expectations when it's came to the Turkish Army, and even if they are a NATO member this alone does not make their army good (not that NATO is in any good shape). Their intervention not made of large forces, nor the best ones, so far we seen mostly M60s, M113s and some other light vehicles as support. For them this to be become a graveyard would require larger intervention, but they would be capable of dealing with IS+Kurds alone, it's not that they are that weak, but it's things not work that way.

The fate of Al-Bab is still unclear. It's like everyone is waiting for an ignite. But until that's not happen, I do not think Turkey will commit more. But it's not matter which side will capture/push toward Al-Bab, because all sides could complete this operation from today to tomorow, but the thing is what comes after that. Rebels will fight whoever they will border, but the Kurds and SAA would fight only the rebels and Turkey. The point of capturing Bab is fails for rebels right when they "need" to confront Kurds/SAA on larger frontlines (currently they mostly border IS), and why would they push themself into a position which in they have worst chances of maintaining the areas they hold? Bab fails for Kurds too, because if they advance Turkey will counter that, and will attack Kurdish areas, and as an addition Rebels could advance in vacumed areas previously hold by IS. SAA do not even want this offensive, this area have no advantage for them, just would take away forces (they alreay low on that). And Turkey is waiting, they placed the rebels there and just chillin'. So why would anyone make the first step? An ignite could be a Kurdish offensive toward Raqqa, or when the offensive against Mosul start, but even then it's unclear why should sides commit more on this area, for this objective.

The future of tanks is fine, it's just in the modern days it's not just flexing muscles, but more like thinking. ATGMs have their many flaws (yet still one of my fav weapons), but it was proven that it's can be countered.

RRH said...

Makes sense mlacix,

A steeper commitment in Syria of a conscript army already suffering fron low morale would be a disaster for the Turks. And I agree the SAA sees no immediate value in Bab, especially with the commitments of it's best forces in Aleppo and N. Hama (al Hassan).


Assad has stated Syria's territorial integrity is not up for debate (what that's worth remains to be seen) and I have a hard time believing Turkey's proxies are going to be permitted to hang out up north indefinitely.

As for Turkey vis a vis the Russians,

I trust Erdogan about as much as they do. He's bad tempered, impulsive and overdue to make another (possibly fatal) mistake.

mlacix said...

Yes, Assad stated that about the land of Syria will not change hand, and will captured back. In a scenario which in SAA win, kurds will get a little bit more right/authority in the areas they currently contol, but will remain parts of Syria, and as the rebels are gone, Turkey retreat back inside their borders, problem solved. In case if SAA loose, Rebels remain, Kurds want independece, Turkey and rebels fight them, until rebels win (or don't) than Turkey retreat back inside their borders, while the rest of the country keep killing each others. Turkey do not need such a problematic land, unless it's about the North-Eastern part where there are some oil, but it's even more problematic to advance there, and they not yet did any step toward this. We will see.