Seek, Strike, Destroy
Tanks were born of necessity. There had to be a way to overcome trench warfare. Somebody threw some steel plates on caterpillar treads and topped the whole thing off with a gun or ten and, boom, we’re rolling over trenches. Well then, the other side gets savvy and they start making tanks. Now we’re back to square one, a stalemate. Tank vs. tank.
Fast forward to WWII. The Germans are using tanks better than anyone else. Hell, they’re using better tanks better than anyone else. The Blitzkrieg has all of Europe shook. Everyone, including the US is looking around and thinking; “Dude, we better get this figured out.” Cue the tank destroyer. Specialized units with towed guns, specialized self-propelled guns, or modified versions of production tanks with long barrel, high velocity guns. Vehicles like the M10, M18, and M36 made short work of Panthers, King Tigers, and everything in between. A few were deployed to the Pacific theater but mainly served as self-propelled artillery due to a distinct lack of Japanese armor.
By the time WWII was wrapping up most main battle tanks were more than capable of taking care of themselves and the US disbanded our Tank Destroyer Center at Camp Hood by 1946. We are left with some really cool history, awesome stories of dudes riding around in giant guns on tracks with no armor over the turret, and making vapor out of Nazis that thought they were safe.