why were tanks unsuccessful war machines in ww1

The British and French both developed tanks during WWI. Although the two countries were allies, they did not know about each other's tank programmes for over a
year, until March 1916. The British first used tanks in September 1916, and the French first used theirs in April 1917. The Germans had not made serious efforts to create armoured vehicles, but began to do so after the British use of tanks in 1916. Germany produced only 20 of her own tanks, and used a larger number of captured British tanks. The USA entered the War without any tanks, and used both British heavy and French light tanks during 1918 As the War progressed, different types of tank were developed.

Britain produced heavy and medium tanks, while France concentrated more on small, light vehicles. Production figures for WWI (approximate): Great Britain 2,600; France 4,000; Germany 20. Russia and Italy also carried out limited experiments. Russia's were abandoned, and Italy produced two prototypes before the War ended. Plans for the USA to build tanks for herself and the Allies were not successful, and none was completed in time to see action.

The development of tanks in World War 1 began as a solution tobreak the stalemate which trench warfare had come around on thewestern front. - wikipedia ------- ---------------------------------------- Tanks were an infantry assault support weapon that served a numberof functions. They provided infantry with a small measure ofprotection against forward machine gun positions but moreimportantly they cleared a path through the most complex barbedwire defenses, opening the way for the infantry advance.

The tankwas the mobile equivalent of a machine gun or artillery bunker, tobe used against enemy strong points out of the range of theattacking infantry. They were slow moving as they didn't reallyneed to be faster than a man could run. The idea was that tankswould break through the heavily prepared front lines and moremobile and reliable cavalry would follow up the breakthrough intoopen country behind the trenches.

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