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Fort Stewart Soldiers Put Newly Acquired Tanks Through Paces

By Army Spc. Jonathan Wallace 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division

FORT STEWART, Ga., April 4, 2018 —

Soldiers with the 3rd Infantry Division’s Delta Tank Company, 6th Squadron, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, fired their newly acquired M1A1-SA Abrams tanks here March 29. 

Since 2nd ABCT’s conversion from a light to an armored brigade combat team last fall, units within the brigade have been fielding and training on their new ground combat platforms. Delta Tank, 6-8 Cav’s only tank company, was the first unit in the brigade’s firing line to test their crews’ abilities. 

‘Gunnery is Beyond Critical’

“Gunnery is beyond critical," said Army Capt. Freddy Mitchell, commander of Delta Tank. "It is a necessary event to create lethal crews. Training like this is advantageous to the unit’s lethality.”

In an effort to meet its goal of becoming the most lethal ABCT in the Army, 2nd ABCT crews must train and master closing with the enemy using fire and movement to destroy or capture enemy forces in sustained and large-scale actions with precision and speed. Gunnery allows those crews to strengthen cohesion and maintain a constant state of readiness, for whenever and wherever they are needed, Mitchell said.

"Today our crews are being evaluated on their proficiency to engage targets from various positions using the Abrams’ weapon systems," said Army Sgt. 1st Class Jose Lopez, master gunner and platoon sergeant with Delta Tank. "Because the Abrams is a stabilized platform, it allows accurate fires even while advancing towards enemy positions."

“The Abrams is the most lethal land warfare platform, battle-tested in both Desert Storm and Iraq,” Mitchell added. “This tank brings another long-range, direct-fire weapons system to our brigade.”