25 images of tank wrecks of WWII

Reconstruction_in_France_1945_BU7880Images of tanks from Normandy to Russia. History seems to have a fasination with tanks, for the crews it was like being in a tracked crematorium. Some years ago I struck up a conversation in a fuel station with British WWII vet. he was in the REME and job was to recover damaged and destroyed tanks from the battlefield. The stories of what he saw and had to do has stayed with me since.

605px-The_British_Army_in_North-west_Europe_1944-45_BU260A Sherman tank passes wrecked German horse-drawn transport on the road to Arras, 1 September 1944. 800px-US_Marines_run_past_a_wrecked_Sherman_tank_1983U.S. Marines run past the ruins of a ”Sherman” tank during their daily physical training exercises. They wre participating as members of the multinational peacekeeping force in Lebanon. The tank was probably a Sherman Firefly used by militias in Lebanon.

American_Soldier_Inspecting_Wrecked_German_TankWRECKED GERMAN TANK SHOWING “BAZOOKA PANTS,” a defense against rockets.

Porto_Farina_tank_wrecks_May1943Tanks, perhaps wrecks, at Porto Farina, Tunisia, in May 1943. The identity of the tanks is unclear. Nearest to the camera is an dismantled SOMUA S35, with its hull armour and suspension armour removed, behind it a British Valentine Mk III tank. In the background are two French-made SOMUA S35s. SOMUA S35s were at the time used by the 19e Groupement Blindé Français, an allied unit, which contradicts the original caption. However, as every usable vehicle was commandeered by the (at that moment) victorious troops, it is unknown who operated these tanks. Original caption: “Allied soldiers inspect the wreckage of one of the tanks of the German Tenth and Fifteenth Panzer Divisions. Photo made at Porto Farina where the Nazis were trapped.”

The_ruins_of_Cassino,_May_1944-_a_wrecked_Sherman_tank_and_Bailey_bridge_in_the_foreground,_with_Monastery_Ridge_and_Castle_Hill_in_the_background._TR1799The ruins of Cassino, May 1944: a wrecked Sherman tank and Bailey bridge in the foreground, with Monastery Ridge and Castle Hill in the background. View of Cassino after heavy bombardment showing a knocked out Sherman tank by a Bailey bridge in the foreground with Monastery Ridge and Castle Hill in the background.

594px-The_British_Army_in_the_Normandy_Campaign_1944_B7760A Sherman tank passes a wrecked German Mk IV near Cagny during Operation ‘Goodwood’, 18 July 1944.

598px-British_Occupation_of_Java_SE7044A wrecked Stuart tank on the southern road between Batavia and Bandoeng. This vehicle formed part of a relief column that went to the assistance of a supply convoy ambushed by Indonesian nationalists. The relief column was itself attacked and the road considered too dangerous for further use. This led to the operation by the 36th Brigade to clear the northern road of Indonesian nationalist fighters.

774px-Panzer_IV_Wreck_NormandyA GMC 353 passes a knocked out Panzerlossy-page1-711px-Lined_up_in_front_of_a_wrecked_German_tank_and_displaying_a_captured_swastika,_is_a_group_of_Yank_infantrymen_who..._-_NARA_-_531503.tifLined up in front of a wrecked German tank and displaying a captured swastika, is a group of USA infantrymen who were left behind to “mop-up” in Chambois, France, last stronghold of the Nazis in the Falaise Gap area. Wrecked_Sherman_tanks_and_carriers_being_broken_up_at_a_British_salvage_dump_in_Normandy,_1_August_1944._B8409Wrecked Sherman tanks and carriers being broken up at a British salvage dump in Normandy, 1 August 1944.


Knocked out Allied tanks assembled in a field near Caen prior to being stripped of material that can be reused. The wrecks would then be scrapped. Royal_Air_Force-_2nd_Tactical_Air_Force,_1943-1945._CL631The aftermath of an attack by Hawker Typhoons of No. 121 Wing on German armoured vehicles which had massed at Roncey, south-east of Coutances, Normandy, to counter-attack American forces on 29 July 1944. The wrecked vehicles include a PzKpfw IV tank and two SdKfz 251 half-track armoured personnel carriers. The graves of some of the occupants can be seen on the left.

The_British_Army_in_North_Africa_1942_E19141The British Army in North Africa 1942. Wrecked Italian M13 or M14 tank

The_British_Army_in_the_Normandy_Campaign_1944_B9475Troops and a civilian examine an abandoned German Mk IV tank with its gun protruding into a wrecked shop front in the village of Putanges, 20 August 1944.

800px-Destroyed_19th_tank_division_near_Vojnitsa-Lutsk_highwayDestroyed tanks of the soviet 19th tank division near Vojnitsa-Lutsk highway.

800px-Relitti_2Panther knocked out in the Ukraine

Destroyed_Panther_Engine_BayDestroyed Panther

German_military_equipment_destroyed_in_StalingradGerman military equipment destroyed in Stalingrad

The_British_Army_in_Normandy_1944_B8635Wrecked German Tiger tanks in the rubble of Villers Bocage after the British had captured the town, 5 August 1944.

605px-CrusadertankandgermantankBritish Crusader tank passes a burning German Panzer IV tank during Operation Crusader

795px-Panthers_Knocked-out_NormandyPanthers Knocked-out Normandy

M4_sherman_in_burning_neumarkt_germany_1945M4 sherman tank, burning in Neumarkt, Germany 1945

Mont_Ormel_tanksDestroyed tanks on Mont Ormel (Hill 262). Left is a Sherman, right foreground is an SdKfz 251, behind it is a Panther

The_British_Army_in_North_Africa_1942_E12792A lorry-mounted 2-pdr anti-tank gun passes a destroyed German PzKpfw tank in the Western Desert, 2 June 1942.

The_British_Army_in_North_Africa_1942_E18835The remains of a knocked-out German PzKpfw IV tank, blown up by sappers to prevent it being recovered by the enemy, 2 November 1942.