Roberta Writes: Thursday Doors, The South African Military Museum – Tanks

Welcome to Thursday Doors, a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world. Feel free to join in on the fun by creating your own Thursday Doors post each week and then sharing your link in the comments below, anytime between 12:01 am Thursday morning and Saturday noon (North American eastern time).

Last week, I wrote about my visit to the South African Military Museum and shared pictures of the aeroplanes I saw there. This week, I am sharing pictures of the tanks. They are amazing and so huge! Best of all, they all have doors.

Terence next to the wheel of a tank. It’s nearly as big as him.

“Tanks, which used to be objects of ridicule, have become a major weapon. They come rolling forward in a long line, heavily armoured, and they embody the horror of war for us more than anything else.

We cannot see the gun batteries that are bombarding us, and the oncoming waves of enemy attackers are human beings just like we are – but tanks are machines, and their caterpillar tracks run on as endlessly as the war itself. They spell out annihilation when they roll without feeling into the shell holes and then climb out again, inexorably, a fleet of roaring, fire-spitting ironclads, invulnerable steel beasts that crush the dead and wounded.”

From All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque.

You can join in Thursday Doors here: https://nofacilities.com/2021/11/04/st-scholastica-doors/

62 thoughts on “Roberta Writes: Thursday Doors, The South African Military Museum – Tanks

      1. I fully agree with you, Robbie! Our German cars will no longer be famous, after they are not very climate-friendly. Maybe they will invent something new. Lets hope with the plug off of our nuclear plant at the end of this years we will nonetheless have enough energy. xx Michael

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  1. Thanks for sharing these insights, Robbie! Have you ever been in one of them? 😉 I remember the headache till today, i got by using the door. Lol I think your husband would have get difficulties finding a good place inside.
    Have a beautiful weekend! xx Michael

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  2. I enjoy military museums, but thanks for adding the poignant quote to help put these machines of war in perspective. The collection is interesting, lots of purpose built vehicles. Thanks for posing your husband for comparison.

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  3. It’s weird… I can see guns and they give me pause but looking at the photos of the tanks do not affect me the same way. They are pretty amazing in their sizes and I would bet rather uncomfortable to ride inside.

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  4. Fascinating, Robbie! Personally, I find tanks terrifying. And a British invention – isn’t that wonderful! (I would rather we had invented fluffy bunnies, or ) – but there is a bit about our tank museum here, if anyone’s interested – https://bitaboutbritain.com/tank/

    ‘All Quiet on the Western Front’ – ‘Im Westen nichts Neues’ (nothing new in the west) is a fabulous, poignant, read as well.

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    1. Thank you, Mike. I am currently reading your book ‘A Bit About Britain’s High Days and Holidays’ and finding it fascinating. I enjoy books about war a great deal and write about war too. I think Douglas Haig was a butcher during WW1, but I suppose the evolution of war to something far more mechanized was unexpected and the leaders just couldn’t shift their mindsets. It’s a good thing the British and French had tanks or we might all be speaking German now.

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      1. Ah, the Railway Museum is up in York, the city where I grew up. Only 2 hours by train! Lots of history though – if I was still there I’d do you the whole tour guide bit 🙂

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  5. What an innovative take on doors, Robbie. My brother and I visited the Studebaker museum in Indiana a few years ago, and it surprised me how much WWI equipment they produced. In fact, that’s what they were known for. I wonder if any of the tanks you saw were Studebakers. I’m not a real fan of war machines. I didn’t even like Hummers when they came out because they looked so mean. We have been blessed in the United States not to see those coming at us. Thanks for a very interesting post. 🙂

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    1. HI Marsha, I am glad these pictures interested you. I don’t recall the name Studebakers on any of the commentary boards. Some of these were locally made during the Angolan war. The USA was spared tanks but still suffered many shortages and much loss of life.

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      1. That is so true, and as Cee and I discussed, PTSD as well. I’m still reading through the book you recommended. I think I remember reading it before, but it is a good reminder that we are not the first generation that has suffered with PTSD.

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      2. Yes, that’s why I am enjoying that book you recommended so much. My friend Elane, who was a child Holocaust survivor told the school children she spoke to that her children didn’t know as much about her experiences as the students did.

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  6. A clever take on doors, Robbie…Not one for visiting war museums ..Duxford for the planes was my only excursion with the boys I tended to go to museums like the natural history Museum or Science Museums with them…I certainly would not want to be in the path of one of those monsters…seeing a tank always conjures up the picture of “Tank Man” in Tiananmen Square which is etched on my brain 🙂 x

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  7. “Best of all, they all have doors.” That little addition to your intro made me smile, Robbie. Those tanks are giant and fascinating, but they have a dark purpose. The quote from All Quiet on the Western Front is so visceral. Great post.

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      1. Some things yes. I watched a program once on how war machines advanced… mostly aimed at distruction.

        I see no benefit in the stronger denying others their history in overtaken lands and even destroying beloved symbols. But that is part of the ‘spoils’. I suppose.

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