[Lone Sentry: British Antitank Guns in Burma, WWII Tactical and Technical Trends]
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"British Antitank Guns in Burma" from Tactical and Technical Trends

The following report about a British antitank action against Japanese light tanks during WWII is taken from Tactical and Technical Trends, No. 6, August 27, 1942.

[DISCLAIMER: The following text is taken from the U.S. War Department publication Tactical and Technical Trends. As with all wartime intelligence information, data may be incomplete or inaccurate. No attempt has been made to update or correct the text. Any views or opinions expressed do not necessarily represent those of the website.]


A British officer gives the following account of the use of British two-pounder (40-mm.) antitank guns in Burma:

"I was on a road in Malaya when I heard the sound of an approaching Jap tank, so I took cover in the rubber trees close beside a well-concealed two-pounder antitank gun. Another gun equally well-concealed was located about 100 yards up the road. The Jap tank came around the corner and moved down the road at about 12 m.p.h. swaying from side to side. The gunners allowed it to pass while some distance behind came another. The leading gun opened on the latter at about 400 yards range and it immediately swung in the direction of the gun. The rear gun at once put four shots rapid into the exposed side and all was silence.

"I went with the gunners to examine the tank. The shots fired by the leading two-pounder against the front of the tank had merely dented the armor and not penetrated. Of the four shots in the side, two had gone right through both sides, and two had caused the armor to break and flake.

"The gunners, very experienced, said that their guns never had any effect on the front of a tank which was heavily armored. They always fought their guns in pairs. The leading gun attracted the tank's attention and the moment it swung and exposed its thin sides the rear gun knocked it out. They said it was just too easy. In this action the leading tank was dealt with down the road. The crew of the tank were three, two in front and one in the turret to operate the guns. There was a mantlet around 75 percent of the bottom of the turret which, I assume, was to protect the turret ring. There was a thick piece of loosely swung armor between the tracks at the bottom of the tank. This presumably, was to protect the belly of the tank when exposed as a result of climbing some obstacle."

BRITISH COMMENT: The tanks involved appear to have been modern light tanks possibly with additional protective armor fitted. The mantlet referred to in this report is evidently a splash ring.


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