Disney’s Stop That Tank!

    Our friends at Forgotten Weapons published the Boys anti-tank rifle training film created by Disney for the Canadian Army. It is pretty hilarious. It starts off with Hitler complaining to the devil that they can’t win the war because of the Boys anti-tank rifle, and ends with a private making out with his Boys rifle under the sheets (hoplophilia?) …

    According to Wikipedia the movie was made because the troops loathed the rifle. I can just imagine a General who never saw the Western Front deciding that his troops should crawl within 100 yards of a light tank, with a huge rifle, to shoot it in precisely the right places (joints, treads) and at precisely the right angle in order to disable it … only to find it had its armor upgraded and the bullets were useless against it, all the while its gunner is taking aim at them.

    … increases in vehicle armour during the Second World War left the Boys largely ineffectual as an anti-tank weapon. A shortened version was issued in 1942 for issue to airborne forces and saw use in Tunisia, where it proved completely ineffective because of the reduced velocity caused by the shortened barrel.[6] The Boys was so unpopular that the Canadian government commissioned a Disney training film, Stop That Tank, to oppose the rifle’s “jinx” reputation.

    The weapon was standard issue to British and Commonwealth forces which attempted to stem the Japanese onslaught through the Pacific theatre. At Milne Bay, the weapon proved completely ineffective. It also failed to stop Japanese tanks in Malaya. Some accounts claim that the 1/14th Punjabis knocked out two light Japanese tanks at a roadblock.[6] This claim, however, has never been substantiated from the Japanese side.

    I remember my grandfather, an Army captain during WWII, telling me about his anti-armor training. He and his fellow officers were very skeptical about many of the techniques they were taught.


    Steve Johnson

    I founded TFB in 2007 and over 10 years worked tirelessly, with the help of my team, to build it up into the largest gun blog online. I retired as Editor in Chief in 2017. During my decade at TFB I was fortunate to work with the most amazing talented writers and genuinely good people!