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OT: Are these AT guns?


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@13:45

https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=c4-feed-u&v=9-zSR2em22k

MT-12 is still in the TO&E of a Russian motor rifle brigade. My understanding is that they were supposed to be replaced by 2S25 "Sprut", but will instead be replaced by a similar system on a future platform.

Thx for that. So theyre still in use. Wonder why the West abandoned them. They still look very evil.

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Thx for that. So theyre still in use. Wonder why the West abandoned them. They still look very evil.

It's just not very efficient to haul a multiple ton ATG with a truck and large crew when just a couple of men can maneuver an ATGM launcher. ATGMs really proved themselves in the Yom Kippur war, although they still suffered from problems - missiles were slow and often inaccurate and anti-missile tactics were developed. In comparison ATGs are multi-use, have a higher rate of fire and there's no dodging a shell flying at 1.5km/s! Soviets also historically appreciated direct fire guns - IIRC Stalin himself said that one direct fire gun compares to a battery of indirect fire artillery. But hell if you had to serve in the crew of one in a shooting war, your life expectancy would be very very low...

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"Stalin himself said that one direct fire gun compares to a battery of indirect fire artillery."

Which merely proves that Stalin was a military moron. But then we knew that already.

An artillery piece firing indirect over the horizon can expect to fire several thousand rounds over its operational life. An artillery piece emplaced for direct fire within sight of the enemy can expect to survive for 20 to 50 rounds - if it is lucky, and used in a situation with local tactical superiority. Most guns used in direct lay were destroyed before taking out a single enemy weapon system of comparable worth or power.

From every actuarial and economic and operations research point of view, the indirect use of artillery is vastly more efficient than direct fire use of the same asset. Surviving lets any military asset apply its combat power repeatedly and that is the single most important way to get more combat effectiveness out of any weapon system with even a potential useful life longer than one shot.

The fallacy consists in comparing the impact of one aimed shot with one unaimed shot, particularly in conditions where there aren't enough trained personnel and communications equipment to aim indirect fire properly. As soon as one properly includes survival and longevity, it is abundantly clear the indirect use is vastly superior. That the Russian army isn't very smart about such things, and wastes combat power pretending it is tough minded to ignore system survival issues, is just so much the worse for the Russian army.

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Well Russians don't think exactly like many others do. Not saying anything is wrong with that mind you. They just seem to think that as long as it works and works decently then worrying about perfection is a waste of time. They figure that you could have hit something again in that time. They also seem to never throw anything away. :P

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"Stalin himself said that one direct fire gun compares to a battery of indirect fire artillery."

Which merely proves that Stalin was a military moron. But then we knew that already.

An artillery piece firing indirect over the horizon can expect to fire several thousand rounds over its operational life. An artillery piece emplaced for direct fire within sight of the enemy can expect to survive for 20 to 50 rounds - if it is lucky, and used in a situation with local tactical superiority. Most guns used in direct lay were destroyed before taking out a single enemy weapon system of comparable worth or power.

From every actuarial and economic and operations research point of view, the indirect use of artillery is vastly more efficient than direct fire use of the same asset. Surviving lets any military asset apply its combat power repeatedly and that is the single most important way to get more combat effectiveness out of any weapon system with even a potential useful life longer than one shot.

The fallacy consists in comparing the impact of one aimed shot with one unaimed shot, particularly in conditions where there aren't enough trained personnel and communications equipment to aim indirect fire properly. As soon as one properly includes survival and longevity, it is abundantly clear the indirect use is vastly superior. That the Russian army isn't very smart about such things, and wastes combat power pretending it is tough minded to ignore system survival issues, is just so much the worse for the Russian army.

To give the old psychopath some benefit of doubt, he and many of his underlings were Civil War generation commanders. Under those circumstances - poor training, poor communications - it may not be unsurprising that one gains an unhealthy respect of DF guns in comparison to indirect artillery. But this is pure speculation, and I can't remember the source for that quote for that matter. Nevertheless Red Army was quite fond of DF infantry guns, as was the Imperial Army before it.

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And no matter how many EMP's you detonate, or viruses you introduce into code, or other comm snafu's which can occur, a shell fired from a barrel at something it's aimed at by the guy next to it, tends to hit. It just sucks to be that guy. Especially if the other guy knows where you are and has over the horizon assets that can get you.

You've already bought the gun. It's fielded. Men are cheap and easily replaced. It's not like that direct fire gunner is gonna do anything better, like bayonet someone with his AK-74, or man a complex launch system. That's for the next guy. So, Soviet style, you keep the ATG AND you get the ATGM system. Full employment for EVERYONE. It's the socialist utopia, military style.

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Soviet Artillery in WW2 preferred direct fire for purely practical reasons:

1. There was a shortage of artillery shells in 1941-42 and, according to the Soviets, one direct fire shell would do as much damage on average as 20 shells fired indirectly;

2. More generally, educational standards in the Soviet Union were low, compared to Germany, USA and UK. Relatively few Soviet artillerymen mastered the skill for "on-the-fly" indirect fire which was pretty much standard with the other combatants. It worked well before major offensives when everything was pre-prepared, but in quiet sectors, the Soviets used indirect fire a lot less than the other combatants. Soviets used direct fire to a great extent to get around this issue.

So they did not use it because they thought it was better, but because there was no practical alternative.

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Wonder why the West abandoned them.

Because by the midpoint of the war, the armor on the heaviest tanks had grown to the point that it had become impossible to penetrate at useful ranges with anything less than 75mm caliber. And a gun that big is a major PITA to move or conceal. The German 75 was the smallest of that class, but it was nowhere near as man mobile as the 37 they started the war with. So the best plan was to put that big gun on a motorized and armored chassis that could displace quickly all on its own and stood a chance of surviving under fire.

Michael

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Sgt Joch,

If you read David Isby's excellent Weapons & Tactics of the Soviet Army, Revised, you'll find the Soviet appreciation of the value of artillery in DF mode continued during the Cold War. The Soviets reckoned a gun in an open fire position (Direct Fire) to be 10x as effective as the same gun in a covered fire position (Indirect Fire). This is fully reflected in the pertinent nomograms for calculating artillery effectiveness and has nothing whatsoever to do with an ammo shortage or artillery incompetence. While some may view DF as a deficiency, it's DF that provides the capability to degrade or destroy things like heavily protected bunkers and fortified houses, as seen in some of the famous Battle of Berlin footage. There, the Soviets clearly lacked neither guns nor ammo. I'd add that the U.S., with perhaps the most flexible, capable and sophisticated artillery control on the planet by the latter stages of World War II, used DF, from the open topped M12 155mm SPG, as a street fighting weapon in Aachen, famously generating the complaint from the German commander that such use was unfair.

Regards,

John Kettler

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