“When it absolutely, positively must be destroyed overnight.” That humorous phrase has become an alternative motto of the United States Marine Corps, and with good reason.
The USMC has a well-earned reputation for delivering destruction to America’s enemies… and one of the most unique vehicles used to accomplish that task is the M1150 Assault Breacher Vehicle, lovingly called the “Tankdozer.”
An amazing video shows exactly what happens when the ABV is put into action. The footage demonstrates the deployment of an innocent-looking “rope” onto the battlefield… but with a single button press, all hell breaks loose.
That rope is actually a mine-clearing line charge, also known as an MICLIC or “mick lick” for short. Like a rope being fired from a harpoon gun, the MCLC can be projected across a minefield and then detonated.
The line of destruction caused by an exploding mine-clearing charge clears a path for troops and vehicles. That capability has proved to be extremely useful in chaotic locations such as Afghanistan.
“On the morning of 03 December 2009, the ABV fired its first line charge during Operation Cobra’s Anger in Now Zad, Afghanistan,” Global Security reported.
“Due to mass amounts of roadside bombs expected around Now Zad, ABV’s led the way for the operation by detonating numerous line charges on the path to the Taliban stronghold, Now Zad,” continued the military information site.
Mine-clearing charges are just one of many tricks that the “Tankdozer” has up its sleeve. As the name implies, the ABV can be thought of as a combination of a tank’s protection and a bulldozer’s ground-clearing capabilities.
The bulk of the ABV is the same as an M1A1 Abrams tank. While the Abrams is designed to take out hardened targets, however, the Tankdozer’s job is to clear paths and protect our soldiers.
“The ABV, which requires a crew of two soldiers, improves the mobility and survivability of combat engineers while having the speed and ability to keep pace with the maneuver force,” explained the U.S. Department of Defense.
“It creates a tank-width cleared lane through a minefield by launching and detonating one of its MICLIC systems across the minefield, then proofing the lane with its FWMP while marking the cleared lane with its LMS,” the DOD continued.
Yes, the military loves its acronyms. FWMP stands for Full Width Mine Plow, while an LMS is a Lane Marking System.
No matter what its called, the Tankdozer is an amazing piece of military machinery — and seeing it in action is nothing short of awesome.