The Merkava: Israel’s main battle tank

“Tallik” was a nickname spoken with a mixture of awe and affection. General-Major Israel Tal, z”l (1924-2010) is not just the father of Israeli armor doctrine, but the Merkava (“chariot”), Israel’s main battle tank, is substantially his brainchild.

The Merkava may not be the very best tank in the world, but it is the one best suited to Israel’s needs, being custom-designed for them.

On an amusing note: late in life, Talik got an award from a clean-government advocacy group, as he must be the only defense developer who not only developed a weapon system 1/3 under budget, but returned the excess money.

Military History Visualized interviews an expert at the German Armor Museum (Panzermuseum) about the Merkava Mark I/II (Mark I upgraded to II), focusing mostly on the genesis of the design and the early versions.

More here. Gotta love the name of this narrator, “Gaijin Media” 🙂

And finally, here is a video from Weapons Detective, which focuses mostly on the current iteration, the Merkava Mark IVm.

May your memory be for a blessing, Tallik, and your handiwork for a shield.

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