Hobby Master HG3302 Polish T-55A Main Battle Tank w/AA Machine Gun - Turret No. "3369" (1:72 Scale)
"By powerful artillery fire, air strikes, and a wave of attacking tanks, we're supposed to swiftly crush the enemy."
- Marshal Georgi K. Zhukov
The T-54 and T-55 main battle tanks were the Soviet Union's replacements for the World War II era T-34 tank. The T-54/55 tank series is the most numerous in the world, and very widely employed, especially by former client states of the Soviet Union.
The T-54 and T-55 tanks are very similar and difficult to distinguish visually. Many T-54s were updated to T-55 standards. Soviet tanks were factory-overhauled every 7,000 km, and often given minor technology updates. Many states have added or modified tank equipment (India affixed fake fume extractors to its T-54s and T-55s, so that Indian gunners wouldn't confuse them with Pakistani Type 59s).
The T-54 can be distinguished by a dome-shaped ventilator on the turret front-right, and has a SGMT 7.62 mm machine gun in a fixed mount in the front of the hull, operated by the driver. Early T-54s lacked a gun fume extractor, had an undercut at the turret rear, and a distinctive "pig-snout" gun mantlet. The T-55's new turret has large D-shaped roof panels, visible from above.
Pictured here is a 1:72 scale replica of a T-55 main battle tank fitted out with a turret-mounted anti-aircraft machine gun.
Length: 4 inches
Width: 1.5 inches
Release Date: January 2008
Historical Account: "The Pact" - The Warsaw Pact or Warsaw Treaty Organization, officially named the Treaty of Friendship, Co-operation and Mutual Assistance, was an organization of Central and Eastern European communist states. It was established on May 14th, 1955, in Warsaw, Poland, to counter the potential threat from the NATO alliance and as retaliation due to the integration of a "re-militarized" West Germany into NATO on May 9th, 1955, via ratification of the Paris Peace Treaties. The Pact lasted throughout the Cold War until certain member nations began withdrawing in 1989, following the collapse of the Eastern Bloc and political changes in the Soviet Union.
The treaty was signed in Warsaw on May 14th, 1955 and official copies were made in Russian, Polish, Czech and German.
On May 1st, 2004, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Slovakia became members of the European Union. This group was followed in 2007 by Romania and Bulgaria.
In November 2005, Poland decided to make its military archives regarding the Warsaw Pact publicly available through the Institute of National Remembrance. About 1,300 documents were declassified in January 2006 with the remaining approximately 100 documents being evaluated for future declassification by a historical commission. Finally, 30 were released, with 70 remaining classified as they involved issues with the current strategic situation of the Polish military. It was revealed in declassified documents that, until the 1980s, the Warsaw Pact's military plans in the case of war with the West consisted of a swift land offensive whose objective would have been to secure Western Europe quickly (using nuclear weapons if necessary). Poland itself was home to 178 nuclear assets, growing to 250 in the late eighties. Warsaw Pact commanders made very few plans for the possibility of fighting a defensive war on their own territory.