The original purpose of armored forces is to suppress resistance and overcoming the enemy infantry lines of fortifications.World War II upset the established notions about the rules of warfare and tactics.Often there were cases of tank artillery duels and even counter-battles.However, it remains true that the armored vehicles can not occur without infantry.
But what about the opposite?Can attack ground troops enemy position yourself?They can, but it's hard.In the mid-thirties, the government and the military of the Ministry of the western countries did not give the armor of the importance it deserves, but some progress is still taking place.British tanks "Matilda" A11 was conceived as a vehicle to support the advancing troops.The low-power (engine 70 hp.. Like a "Zhiguli"), low-speed (speed up to 13 km / h), deprived of artillery weapons, but equipped with a good book, it is intended by the designers had to cover the infantry its silhouette, firing frommachine guns mounted in a small tower.
A11 Almost all were lost during the emergency evacuation of British troops from Dunkirk in 1940.
By this time in England has made a new "Matilda".The tank has been significantly upgraded and received a code A12 Senior (Sr.).By far the car was perfect, comparing it with the samples which were in service with the Red Army, it is difficult.Housing riveted and power plant consisted of two coaxial motors of 87 liters.from.For comparison: BT-7, which is so like to call the "outdated", was equipped with a 400-horsepower diesel engine.The caliber turret gun of 40 mm and inferior Soviet projectile size 45 mm.However, the British tried to establish a more powerful gun (50 mm) on the tank "Matilda".Photos of the modification exists, but it is not part of the army came.
Geography combat use of loud sounds.El Alamein, Tobruk, Eritrea, Malta, Borneo, New Guinea - are just some of the names of places where time to make war "Matilda".Tank, despite the more than modest performance, with its function to cope if he was not opposed to serious opponents.In North Africa, the Italian body was armed with outdated technology even more, the Japanese in the Pacific and could not boast of powerful machines.
After Nazi Germany's attack on the USSR, Sir Winston Churchill was so interested in the successes of the Red Army that, setting aside for the time being his anti-communism, and despite the plight of the UK, has decided to provide military assistance to the country.Among the supplied samples of military equipment and was "Matilda".The tank is inferior to the Soviet fellow, but as they say, bezrybe ... There were delivered about a thousand cars.In 1943, the Soviet Union refused to accept this type of armament, its service has been problematic, and combat effectiveness is very questionable.
In most of the British Army in 1943 began the process of retooling on the US "Sherman" and "grants".There were also British, "valentine", which also were not perfect, but still better than "Matilda".Tank has played a role in defeating the Nazis and Italian fascists in the African theater of war, and most of the credit for this British tank crews who showed bravery to manage this complicated, unreliable and low-power machine, triumphed over a strong and skilful opponent.