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What if the UK started the North African war with mostly only Vickers Medium Mk IIs in theatre?

Discussion in 'What If - Mediterranean & North Africa' started by Spartanroller, Apr 26, 2011.

  1. Spartanroller

    Spartanroller Ace

    Aug 30, 2010
    Likes Received:
    I think this tank, although not 'good' in it's own right, was more influential than is often thought - it had thin armour, but wasn't too bad for speed - the gun wasn't 'too' bad for early WW2 although it wasn't too accurate, and the MG complement was good, it had radios and good turret layout, and pretty good crew access for the time. It wasn't the most reliable vehicle ever, but better than many that replaced it.

    Although by the time things kicked off In North Africa, the British forces had a selection of newer (albeit pretty bad) Cruiser tanks and soon got the Matilda II, when the Italians invaded Egypt, the remaining Vickers Mediums were actually moved up to the border with every intent to use them, although it never happened. They did end up being dug in around Mersa Matruh as pillboxes later and saw some action in that role.

    Many were used for training right through until 1942 at least, both in the UK and abroad, but never saw action there.

    What if, though, the procurement of newer vehicles was a little further behind, maybe priorities changed for their allocations, leaving an armoured force in Egypt based on some light tanks and primarily the Vickers Medium, albeit in numbers similar to the actual cruiser numbers available?

    What would have been the result of the Italian M11/39 going up against the Vicky, for example? and would it be possible that the change of balance in tank technology wouldn't have made a difference to what actually happened?

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