WW2 70th Anniversaries this month:
1 Jan 1942 - The Battle of Bataan - Imperial Japanese forces decimate US and Philippines forces at Bataan, occupying Manilla on the 23rd Dec.
19 Jan - Japanese forces enter Burma.
21 Jan - Erwin Rommel launches a new offensive in Cyrenica, retaking Benghazi by 30 January and pushing Allied forces back to defensive lines at Gazala.
31 Jan - The last Commonwealth forces leave Malaya; 50,000 have been taken prisoner by the Japanese. The causeway connecting Singapore to the mainland is demolished by the Royal Engineers. The remaining 80,000 Commonwealth troops in Singapore, the "Gibraltar of the East" stand alone, isolated and surrounded.
Rafale B, CEAM/EC 5/330 (Trials & Assessment),
NATO Tiger Meet 2008, BAN Landivisiau..
The Rafale (Squall) is effectively the French equivalent of the Eurofighter Typhoon, and indeed grew from the same original requirement.
The two-seat Rafale was originally intended as a trainer, but the French Air Force have since determined that the second seat is needed for effective ground attack operations and have therefore revised the balance of their order so that most operational land-based French Rafales will be the B model.
This stunning scheme was prepared for the "Ocean Tiger" NATO Tiger Meet gathering at the French Navy Air Base Landivisiau in 2008.
I purchased this kit during a short stop in Paris in November, which included a quick visit to the marvellous new Euro Maquettes shop at Gare de Lyon (well, you have to haven't you!). The old shop was superb in its own right, but this is even better.
HobbyBoss have produced a well engineered and impressive kit, with some superb decals for this and one other Tiger Meet scheme. The kit is much more impressive than Italeri's, although rumour on "the web" suggests that it may be a bit under scale.
Whether it is or not, its still an very enjoyable kit, that look most impressive when finished. The tiger markings on the wings and fuselage consist of 3 large decals. Not easy to apply and the instructions aren't entirely helpful, but they do bed down and shrink into place most effectively.
More Dassault aircraft on the Friends & Allies pages
Uralvagonzavod T-62 Main Battle Tank, Iraqi Regular Army, Al-Faw 2003
The T-62 was an up-gunned development of the T-55, entering service in 1961 as a counter to advanced western tanks such as the Centurion. Difficult and expensive to build, it fell from favour when new ammunition for the T-55 allowed the older tank to regain its effectiveness.
Production of the T-62 ended in 1975, but it remains in widespread service around the world.
Iraq acquired a total of 2,850 T-62s, with the final 500 used (and largely destroyed) during the second Gulf War.
This is another ex-ESCI kit re-released by Italeri. OOB, it includes decals for 2 Soviet and one Syrian tank.
The kit is fairly basic, with raised detail and rather chunky road wheels.
I have painted mine as one of the Iraqi Army tanks defending the Al-Faw peninsula in 2003. Despite a skilled and ferocious defence, the overwhelming force of the Royal Marines, US Marines and British Army quickly defeated the defending forces.
More AFVs on my Dark Side pages