- David Doyle
- ARRSE Rating
- 4 Mushroom Heads
Pen and Swords Images Of War is a large body of work and constantly getting larger. In this volume David Doyle has made a significant addition. The M2 Bradley IFV and it’s closely linked brother the M3 Cavalry Fighting Vehicle had their roots in the mid 70s. Along with the M1 Abrams and the AH64 Apache it was designed to be one of the main battle winning elements of the US Armies rapidly evolving manoeuvre Warfare doctrine.
The arrival of the BMP1 on the world stage caught the Western allies napping and complacent with their Infantry firmly lodged in their Battlefield Taxis such as the M113 and FV432 series vehicles. The M2 had a somewhat painful birth with the US government, the Army, and several corporations battling to produce a vehicle that satisfied an almost impossible criteria. There is even a film about it. Luckily Doyle avoids this controversy by producing a factual volume that concentrates on the vehicle itself in great detail.
The weighty volume is cram packed with close up photos that cover every aspect of the Bradley, interior, exterior and employment. In the late 80s I served a two week exchange on an M3 with the 1/11 ACR in Fulda. The book takes me back to the (rather cramped) turret, spacious drivers cab, and rear crew compartment. The volume then takes us through the series of improvements that give us the much up-armoured and Armed Bradley Of today’s US Army.
The book is (I suspect) a scale modellers dream, covering details down to tool, ammunition, and weapon stowage, light configurations, crew controls, and external bin improvements. I hold my hands up, I am an armour nerd and I appreciated every aspect of this well researched, illustrated, and annotated book. The book also covers the Bradleys employment in the various Gulf wars, but saves most of its pages for the vehicle itself. Highly recommended for any fellow AFV buffs out there.