Sea Transportation: August 30, 2001


There was an embarrassing moment for American planners in 1999. When it came time to move U.S. armored units into Kosovo it was discovered that there was no way to move the M-1 tanks over the alps. Either bridges could not handle the weight of these 70 ton tanks, or rail tunnels were too small. So they had to be shipped by river barge, a time consuming drill that took several weeks. It was later noted that tanks could have been moved more quickly by ship from the United States to Albania. Not a lot was made of this, as one reason American armored brigades are kept in Germany is so they can be quickly moved to any hot spot in the region. But it's tough moving 70 ton tanks overland. Moving them by sea is much easier. However, sea movement is not sexy at the moment, so this incident was kept quiet. 


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