King of the Killing Zone

Orr Kelly, Author W. W. Norton & Company $18.95 (288p) ISBN 978-0-393-02648-1
Kelly traces the long, complex, often contentious process by which the U.S. Army decided what kind of main battle tank it wanted, then designed, built and trained its soldiers to operate it. Early critics have predicted that the Abrams M-1 will prove so unreliable as to be almost useless. But the author, a correspondent for the Washington Star and U.S. News & World Report , argues that the M-1 has already proven itself in European training maneuvers and in war games at the National Training Center in California, and will remain the mainstay of U.S. armor forces into the early years of the next century. ``If the Abrams never fires a shot in angernever has to prove itself king of the killing zoneit will represent 20 billion dollars well spent.'' The book reviews the development of armored warfare, taking a close look at tank/anti-tank operations in the 1973 Yom Kippur War, which, according to Kelly, ``exerted a far more important influence on the Army's thinking about how to fight a war than all the long, frustrating years in Southeast Asia'' and the latest in Soviet armored developments. The jury, of course, is still out. Photos. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/01/1989
Release date: 02/01/1989
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-425-12304-1
Paperback - 292 pages - 978-0-393-33293-3
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