Story of Tanks The first tanks were produced from late 1914 by Great Britain and France to break the deadlock of trench warfare on the Western Front. Their first use was during the Battle of the Somme in 1916. Britain and France built thousands of tanks, while Germany only developed and bought into service 20 vehicles of a single design. In this programme, we look at the development of tanks throughout history including the German tank division, Russian tanks and U.S. tank development. We also look at tanks in the Cold War. This is a fascinating episode not to be missed by those with an interest in military history and weapon development. Tank Battles of World War II This programme focuses on the German tank strategies and the invasion into Russia in 1941. Though outnumbered two to one, the German's superior training and tactics gave them the edge in capturing the city of Kiev. They were stopped only 20 miles from Moscow by the powerful Russian T-34 tanks and the bitterly cold winter, which historians consider being a turning point in the war. Meanwhile in North Africa, German troops, led by General Erwin Rommel, outclassed and outnumbered the allied forces until the General Patton and his American troops arrived in Tunisia and provided reinforcements. The greatest tank battle of the war took place at Kursk. The Germans launched an all-out offensive using their more powerful Tiger and Panther tanks but the unveiling of new anti-tank guns and the more reliable allied tanks turned the battle in favour of the allied troops under the command of Field Marshall Montgomery and General Patton. WWII in Colour: Hitler Strikes East When Hitler expounded his intention to invade Russia his generals looked at him in horrified silence. The Soviet Union was vast and had matchless resources. Hitler's whole plan depended upon striking a swift and decisive knock-out blow. Get sucked into a long, drawn-out war and Germany would surely lose. Hitler was certain his forces could do it. No one had so far defeated them. But there had never been a military gamble like it... This film takes in Stalingrad and the Battle of Kursk, the biggest tank battle in all history.