“An armoured fighting vehicle (AFV) is an armed combat vehicle protected by armour, generally combining operational mobility with offensive and defensive capabilities. AFVs can be wheeled or tracked. Examples of AFVs are tanks, armoured cars, assault guns, self-propelled guns, infantry fighting vehicles (IFV), and armoured personnel carriers (APC).
Armoured fighting vehicles are classified according to their characteristics and intended role on the battlefield. The classifications are not absolute; two countries may classify the same vehicle differently, and the criteria change over time. For example, relatively lightly armed armoured personnel carriers were largely superseded by infantry fighting vehicles with much heavier armament in a similar role.
Successful designs are often adapted to a wide variety of applications. For example, the MOWAG Piranha, originally designed as an APC, has been adapted to fill numerous roles such as a mortar carrier, infantry fighting vehicle, and assault gun.
Armoured fighting vehicles began to appear in use in World War I with the armoured car, the tank, the self-propelled gun, and the personnel carrier seeing use. By World War II, armies had large numbers of AFVs, together with other vehicles to carry troops this permitted highly mobile manoeuvre warfare.”
Comment: Fairly comprehensive summary description of the subject offered as a reference for those of you who complain of a lack of knowledge. pl
Thanks. The terminology is confusing to some people, possibly. “Armored Personnel Carrier” and “Armored Fighting Vehicle” are almost self explanatory, but the designs will change over the course of time. “Tank” — howso? This citation below says it wasn’t the first option. “Cistern” or “Reservoir?” No way would such nomenclature be adopted for the use of rugged young infantrymen, in my opinion.
Meaning “fuel container” is recorded from 1902. Slang meaning “detention cell” is from 1912. Railroad tank-car is from 1874.
In military use, “armored, gun-mounted vehicle moving on continuous articulated tracks,” the word originated late 1915. In “Tanks in the Great War” , Brevet Col. J.F.C. Fuller quotes a memorandum of the Committee of Imperial Defence dated Dec. 24, 1915, recommending the proposed “caterpillar machine-gun destroyer” machines be entrusted to an organization “which, for secrecy, shall be called the ‘Tank Supply Committee,’ …” In a footnote, Fuller writes, “This is the first appearance of the word ‘tank’ in the history of the machine.” He writes that “cistern” and “reservoir” also were put forth as possible cover names, “all of which were applicable to the steel-like structure of the machines in the early stages of manufacture. Because it was less clumsy and monosyllabic, the name ‘tank’ was decided on.” They were first used in action at Pozieres ridge, on the Western Front, Sept. 15, 1916, and the name was quickly picked up by the soldiers. Tank-trap attested from 1920.
F & L –
The story I heard was different. It was a year before the Imperial Defense Committee memo quoted by Col Fuller. The Royal Marines had armored Rolls Royces mounted with heavy machine guns. But of course they could not cross trenches. So the British Admiralty under Churchill established a Landship Committee whose ideas eventually led to the tank. Their first brainstorming however was a bit ridiculous. One of the ideas they tossed about was a landship as big as a small Royal Navy warship. It was ten or twenty times the mass of the biggest modern battle tank. Sounds like something out of Star Wars. I don’t believe it ever got beyond the idea stage. I suppose the Army got wind of it and took over and scaled it down..
That story may or may not be true. Winnie was known for sometimes stretching the truth. But I tend to believe it based on his championing of many off-the-wall ideas during WW2; for example the Mulberry Harbor, Hobart’s Funnies, etc.
Probably Churchill’s grandest was his enthusiastic approval of HMS Habakkuk. That 600-meter long aircraft carrier whose hull was made of pycrete, a mixture of ice and frozen wood pulp. It’s size would have dwarfed modern aircraft carriers.
For the record: It is not complaining to state facts; the fact is I am just now realizing how much I have to learn.
Good to know the wiki is not messing with their pages about military vehicles.
I do look at their pages and will do so, now, with more confidence.
I found these websites most recently – I decided to search Understanding the Military for Dummies (no such book) the search, however, found this:
How the US army works
Military Ranks comparison (I get confused as all hell between countries military)
US DOD terminology (A to Z)
my thoughts: So yes, I needed a better v-o-c-a-b-u-l-a-r-y just to do a proper search. Looking up the acronyms one at a time was getting me a lot of click bait sites.