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The 4th Armoured Division is a military formation of the Egyptian Army. Its most notable service was in the Arab defeats by the Israelis in the 1956 Suez Crisis, the 1967 Six Day War, and the 1973 Yom Kippur War.

The division's involvement in the 1956 war began on October 29, 1956, when a reconnaissance regiment, followed by the 1st and 2nd Armoured Groups (brigades) was ordered to cross the Canal, from its location in the Deversoir area, to the eastern side to counter detected Israeli advances.[1] Egypt began receiving T-34s and SU-100s from Czechoslovakia, with Soviet approval, in 1956. By 1967, while the 4th Armoured Division[2] was still partially equipped with the T-34/85, most were in tank regiments supporting infantry formations.[3]

The division saw service in the 1967 and 1973 wars. While seen as a well-regarded formation before the 1973 war[4] it performed poorly after the Israelis crossed the Canal following the Battle of the Chinese Farm and the ensuing encirclement of the Third Field Army.

Nordeen and Isby write that U.S. M60A3s tanks were transferred to Egypt by 1987 and a further 150 in 1987-93. They were issued '..first to the two independent tank brigades and then to the 4th and 9th Armoured Divisions.'[5] As with the T-62s, the Egyptians re-equipped their troops a brigade at a time.

The division was part of the corps-sized group dispatched to Saudi Arabia after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in September 1990. It participated in the slow Arab advance of Joint Forces Command North on Kuwait in February 1991.[6]


  1. Trevor N. Dupuy, "Elusive Victory: The Arab-Israeli Wars, 1947-1974" Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall, (1992) (hardback), 155.
  2. Kandil mentions the 4th Armoured Division on pages 32, 48, 80, 133, and 144 of Soldiers, Spies, and Statesmen. Soldiers, Spies, and Statesmen, Verso, 2012.
  3. Zaloga, Steven J. (1996-09-15) (in en). T-34-85 Medium Tank 1944-94. Osprey Publishing. pp. 38–39. ISBN 9781855325357. 
  4. Suez '73 boardgame
  5. Nordeen, Lon; Isby, David (2013-05-20) (in en). M60 vs T-62: Cold War Combatants 1956–92. Bloomsbury Publishing. ISBN 9781849082969. 
  6., Norman Schwarzkopf, It Doesn't Take A Hero.

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