A half track passing a knocked-out Soviet Churchill tank

Knocked out Soviet Lend-Lease Churchill

Significant numbers of British Churchill, Matilda and Valentine tanks were shipped to the USSR along with the US M3 Lee after it became obsolete on the African Front, ceasing production in December 1942 and withdrawn from British service in May 1943. The Churchills, supplied by the arctic convoys, saw action in the Siege of Leningrad and the Battle of Kursk, while tanks shipped by the Persian route supplied the Caucasian Front. Between June 1941 and May 1945, Britain delivered to the USSR:

  • 3,000+ Hurricanes
  • 4,000+ other aircraft
  • 27 naval vessels
  • 5,218 tanks
  • 5,000+ anti-tank guns
  • 4,020 ambulances and trucks
  • 323 machinery trucks
  • 2,560 Universal Carriers
  • 1,721 motorcycles
  • £1.15bn worth of aircraft engines
  • 600 radar and sonar sets
  • Hundreds of naval guns
  • 15 million pairs of boots
In total 4 million tonnes of war materials including food and medical supplies were delivered. The munitions totaled £308m (not including naval munitions supplied), the food and raw materials totaled £120m in 1946 index. In accordance with the Anglo-Soviet Military Supplies Agreement of 27 June 1942, military aid sent from Britain to the Soviet Union during the war was entirely free of charge.
Two Tiger II tanks on a Paris street 1944

Two Tiger II tanks on a Paris street 1944

The heaviest tank on the battlefield, the Tiger II or Königstiger was a formidable foe, but it had its fair share of shortcomings.  From over-complicated engineering, not enough power for the weight of the beast and the lack of quality raw materials led to this monster not being able to perform to its fullest.
However that being said, wherever this tank was deployed, it devastated its opponents.

In this photo two King Tigers of the 503rd Heavy Panzer Battalion are passing through a Paris street on the way to the Normandy front in August 1944, ultimately however nothing the German’s threw at the invading Allies was enough to halt their advance, and once Operation Bagration was launched it was really only a matter of time before the war for Germany was over.