Armoured Warfare in the Korean War, Anthony Tucker-Jones

Armoured Warfare in the Korean War, Anthony Tucker-Jones

Although the Korean War didn't feature any major armoured battles, both sides did use tanks in quite large numbers, and the side with the better tanks often had a significant advantage on the battlefield. This entry in the Images of War series looks at the impact tanks had on the fighting in Korea, with a good selection of the main tanks used on both sides - ex-Soviet tanks for the North Koreans and a mix of Second World War and more modern tanks for the UN forces. The pictures are supported by useful relevant captions.

Not all of the pictures are of tanks or armoured vehicles. Major aspects of the war are also covered, including the amphibious landings and the various types of aircraft that took part in the battle. This is a good decision - there weren't that many different types of tanks used in Korea (T-34, SU-75, Sherman, Pershing, Patton, Chaffee, Churchill, Cromwell and Chieftain by my count).

Not every picture comes from Korea. The author clearly couldn’t find suitable pictures of two of the British tanks to serve in Korea, so the picture of a Cromwell comes from Normandy (according to the caption) and of a Churchill from somewhere in Germany or Holland (based on the partially seen name of a café behind the tank).

The author has decided not to assume that the reader is familiar with the course of the Korean War, and so the chapter introductions also serve as a useful short history of the war, combined with an examination of the changing role of armour in the conflict. At first the T-34 was king of the battlefield, especially as the South Koreans lacked any effective anti-armour weapons. This changed when the US introduced Pershing and Patton tanks and more UN air power appeared, and there was then a spell when the UN armour ruled the battlefield. Finally came the period of static warfare with tanks as immobile pill boxes or mobile artillery.

1 - Uncle Joe's Koreans
2 - The North Korean Steamroller
3 - RoK's Armour
4 - Uncle Sam Holds the Line
5 - Britain and the UN to the Rescue
6 - Inchon Triumph
7 - Korean Swansong
8 - Turning the Tide
9 - First Spring Offensive

Author: Anthony Tucker-Jones
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 160
Publisher: Pen & Sword Military
Year: 2012

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