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Treat 'Em Rough
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Treat 'Em Rough

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The Birth of American Armour 1917-20.

By Dale E Wilson.

Tanks caused a havoc among the Germans when they first appeared on the battlefields of Europe in 1917. These metal monsters broke up the trench warfare stalemate and thus hastened the armistice. This is the first full study of the U.S. Army's World War I Tank Corps. Because of production delays and political manoeuvring, no American tanks made it into the war, and American tankers had to use French machines instead. But a new breed of army officers, of which Eisenhower and Patton are the most famous, saw the promise of this new technology and staked their careers on it. Ike trained the first generation of tankers at Camp Colt at Gettysburg, and Patton led them into battle in France.

The author brings these early days of the Tank Corps to life. Using eye-witness accounts from the archives at the Army War College and elsewhere, he details the design and building of the first tanks, the training of crews, the monstrous problem of transport in an age when roads were built for horse-drawn carriages, the evolution of armoured combat doctrine and the three great battles in which tanks revolutionized modern warfare: St Mihiel, Meuse-Argonne, and St. Quentin.

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