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Armor Magazine, September-October 1989

Armor Magazine, September-October 1989

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07/23/2014

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I
suppose that the heavy vs. light force debatewill always be a natural by-product of con-strained fiscal resources, but
1
have to wonderwhy those who choose to advocate dismember-ment of heavy forces do
so
in a darkened room
in
the absence of the light of history. Sure, lightforces are less expensively equipped thanheavy, and
I
grant that light forces are moreeasily deployed to potential
or
actual hot spots.But don't both forces have sufficient missions
to
keep them busy
-
missions that each coulddo better than the other? Missions they mustdo together? Isn't our Army big enough forboth?Can BDU shirts and automatic weapons, nomatter how well trained and physically fit theirowners, take and hold ground against an ar-mored foe? On the other hand, can a tank com-pany alone seize a built-up area without gettingits butt kicked? Despite arguments to
the
con-trary, the answer to these questions is "no."Light forces can handle many of the so-calledlow-intensity situations well. But each one hasthe potential to reach an intensity with whichthey can no longer cope. When that happens,who ya gonna call?Combined arms is the key
-
we've knownthat for a long time. From its very inceptionnearly
50
years ago, combined arms has beenthe bedrock of the Armored Force, thus the sig-nificance of the three colors on the triangularpatch: red (artillery), blue (infantry), yellow(cavalry).Yet, there are always some who don't thinkwe are needed, some who continually strive toput all our force development eggs
in
the lightforce basket. The September 1989 Parameterscontains an article in which the author suggeststhat the heavy forces are a display army, whilethe light guys represent the real fighting army("Two Armies," pp. 24-34). "One might well askwhy America bothers with an expensive displayarmy at all," the author writes. "Surely fiveor solight infantry divisions could just as easily holdthe line in Europe, particularly if some of themoney saved by mothballing
the
heavy forcedinosaurs went into fielding of effective antitankweapons. This effort would seem a modest ex-penditure compared to the billions paid out forcurrent heavy tanks and sophisticated fightingvehicles."Let's see what the 101st Airborne trooperswho were at Bastogne, and the Britishparatroopers who were in Arnhem think of this.As Colonel Harry Summers wrote
in
his Sep-tember
4,
1989, Army Times column (p. 23),"The average armored
or
mechanized division's300 Abrams tanks, 300 Bradley infantry fightingvehicles, and the self-propelled 155-mm howit-zers and multiple launch rocket systems of itsdivision artillery provide an awesome array ofcombat power capable of standing toe-to-toeand slugging
it
out with any enemy force in theworld."That's what the Army's heavy force, and
o
the heavy force can do for you. Those who con-tinually profess
the
attitude of "I'd rather be lightthan right" to the exclusion of all else need towake up and smell the diesel.
-
PJC
By Order of the Secretary of the Army:CARL E.
VUONO
General, United States ArmyChief
of
StaffOfficial:WILLIAM
J.
MEEHAN IIBrigadier General, United States ArmyThe Adjutant General
 
I
The Professional Development Bulletin
of
the Armor Branch PB-
17-89-5
Editor-in-Chief
MAJOR PATRICK J. COONEY
Managing Editor
JON T. CLEMENS
Commandant
MG
THOMAS C. FOLEY
ARMOR (ISSN 0004-2420) is publishedbimonthly by the U.S. Army Armor Center, 4401Vine Grove Road, Fort Knox,
KY
40121.Disclaimer: The information contained inARMOR represents the professional opinions ofthe authors and does not necessarily reflect theofficial Army or TRADOC position, nor does itchange or supersede any informationpresented in other official Army publications.Official distribution is limited to one copy foreach heavy brigade headquarters, armoredcavalry regiment headquarters, armor battalionheadquarters, armored cavalry squadron head-quarters, reconnaissance squadron head-quarters, armored cavalry troop, armor com-pany, and motorized brigade headquarters ofthe United States Army. In addition, Armylibraries, Army and DOD schools,HQDA andMACOM staff agencies with responsibility for ar-mored, direct fire, ground combat systems, or-ganizations, and the training of personnel forsuch organizations may request
two
copies bysending a military letter to the editor-in-chief.Authorized Content: ARMOR will print onlythose materials for which the US. Army ArmorCenter has proponency. That proponency in-cludes: all armored, direct-fire ground combatsystems that do not serve primarily as infantrycarriers; all weapons used exclusively in thesesystems or by CMF 19series enlisted soldiers:any miscellaneous items of equipment whicharmor and armored cavalry organizations useexcluslvely: training for all SC 12A. 128. and12C officers and for all CMF-1Sseries enlistedsoldiers: and information concerning the train-ing, logistics. history. and leadership of armorand armored cavalry units at the brigadelregi-ment level and below. to include Threat units atthose levels.Material may be reprinted. provided credit isgiven to ARMOR and to the author, exceptwhere copyright is indicated.
September-October
1Y89,
Vol
XCVlll
No.
5
Features
5
1116
1823253135424447
Gorbachev’s Cuts
-
How
They Impact on the Armor Force
by Gerald
A.
Halbert
Developing a Tank Autoloader
by Major John C. Woznick
A
British Tank Squadron Tries the M1A1
by Major
D.
I.
Viccars
Deceptive Maneuver
by Captain
(P)
ames F. Merkel
Training for Replacement Operations Warfighting
by Major Jon H. Moilanen
Ashby
Is
Here!
...
by Major Patrick
J.
Cooney
Tank Thermal Signatures:The Other Variable in the Gunnery Equation
by Stephen
P.
Rosa and Sergeant First Class Thomas Lindsley
Division Cavalry: The Broken Sabre
by Major General Robert
E.
Wagner
Armory Training for Tank Gunnery
by Lieutenant Colonel Gerald
R.
Whitfieldand Major Douglas L. Dilday
Creating an Army
of
Winners
by First Lieutenant Jeff Swisher
Commanders and Moral Courage
by Lieutenant Colonel James
E.
Swartz
Departments
2 Letters
49
Recognition Quiz Anzwers2 Contacts 50 Bustle Rack
4
Commander’s Hatch 52 Books
46
Recognition Quiz
Dlsiribution Restriction: Approved
for
public
release;
distribution
s
unlimited.

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