The United States Army Unveils the M10 Booker Combat Vehicle
The United States Army is rolling out a new armored vehicle that could rewrite the battlefield understanding of how tanks are used in combat. Sergeant Major of the Army Michael Grinston unveiled the M10 Booker combat vehicle during the service’s 248th birthday event at Fort Belvoir, Virginia, according to The Defense Post.
— SMA Michael Grinston (@USArmySMA) June 10, 2023
While the Booker appears to resemble main battle tanks such as the M1 Abrams in key respects, it also differs from the category in other ways.
The 105mm Combat Vehicle, M10 Booker is publicly on display at the Army Birthday Festival. It carries the new name of two soldiers who were killed during WWII and OIF, rather than the mouthful of the term Mobile Protected Firepower. pic.twitter.com/l1CKGbnoK2
— Ronkainen (@ronkainen7k15) June 11, 2023
The Booker was developed through the Army’s Mobile Protected Firepower program, according to the Association of the United States Army. The vehicle is the Army’s first new combat vehicle in two decades, according to Stars and Stripes.
Powerful and Agile
“The M-10 Booker is an armored vehicle that is intended to support our infantry brigade combat teams by suppressing and destroying fortifications, gun systems, and trenches, and then, secondarily, providing protection against enemy armored vehicles,” program executive officer Maj. Gen. Glenn Dean said of the vehicle, according to The Washington Times.
The Booker combat vehicle clocks in at approximately 42 tons — considerably lighter than the M1 Abrams, which weighs more than 70 tons. The vehicle — armed with a 105 mm main gun, a .50 caliber Browning machine gun, and a 7.62 mm machine gun to boot — is intended to assist the maneuver of infantry personnel against entrenched positions in combat.
“The M-10 would be used, much as the original tanks in the First World War were, to defeat the machine guns that tie down infantry, destroy fixed positions, and to destroy light armor in order to restore mobility to the infantry,” retired Maj. Gen. Patrick J. Donahoe told The Washington Times of the craft.
Adapting to Modern Warfare
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has spurred questions on conventional battlefield tank tactics, with many of Russia’s tanks destroyed by Ukrainian infantry and drone operators. The M-10’s military proponents reject its categorization as a “light tank,” pointing to its intended use in combat, rather than reconnaissance.
USA M-10 Booker Infantry support vehicle- don’t call it a light tank pic.twitter.com/q733J8F5o7
— De Faakto Intelligence Research Observatory (@faakto) June 10, 2023
The Booker is named after two soldiers — Pvt. Robert Booker and Staff Sgt. Stevon A. Booker — who were killed in action in World War II and the Iraq War, respectively. The Army is slated to receive the first M10 Booker vehicles in November, according to Stars and Stripes.
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