Military Review

Armored vehicles of Yugoslavia. Part of 3. Yugoslav People's Army (1945-1980's)

Immediately after the end of the war, the 1st and 2nd tank brigades reinforced by motorized rifle brigades were transformed into divisions, which made up the 1st Panzer Army. The commander in chief of the Yugoslav army, Marshal Tito, considered tanks the most important moral and political factor. At that time, Yugoslavia, with the exception of the USSR, was the only country in Europe that had its own tank army. Several officers were sent to study at the Soviet Academy of Armored Forces. Training of personnel, as well as the combat use of tanks, was conducted in Yugoslavia according to the Soviet model. Significant influence on the modernization of the Yugoslav tank forces had Soviet military advisers.

As a result, reformed and modernized in 1946 — 1948. tank units of the Yugoslav army began to be a formidable force.

In March, the 1946 from the USSR received the next “tranche” of military aid (66 T-34 and six BA-64) for the creation of the 5-th tank brigade (its formation was planned during the war years). At that time, the Yugoslav Army had 130 T-34 (six captured German T-34-76, two T-34-85 transferred from 4-th Guards Mechanized Corps, 56 survived the war machine 2-brigade and 66 tanks 5-brigade) .

A Tank Military School (TSS) was formed. TSS was transferred from Belgrade to Bela Tserkva, on the border with Romania. At that time, the school had about 20 T-34, a dozen captured tanks and self-propelled guns (mostly Hotchkiss and Hetzer). In the exercises, the trophy technique has always "played" for the "enemy".

Armored vehicles of Yugoslavia. Part of 3. Yugoslav People's Army (1945-1980's)

Trophy German light tank PzKpfw II on the teachings of the Yugoslav army

Trophy German medium tank PzKpfw III on the teachings of the Yugoslav army

captured German assault gun StuG.III on the teachings of the Yugoslav army

trophy light tank LT-38 on the teachings of the Yugoslav army

In addition, the TSS was the only ISA-152 self-propelled self-propelled unit. Once it fought as part of one of the parts of the 2 of the Ukrainian Front, but it got bogged down in the swamps of the Danube lowland, where it was abandoned. After the war, the Yugoslavs pulled the car out of the swamp, and after repairing it, they exploited it in the tank school.

ISU-152 at the post-war exhibition of NOAU combat equipment in Belgrade

In January, 1946 was again aggravated by the situation around Trieste (the so-called "Trieste crisis"). The 2 Polish Corps of the 8 British Army violated the provisions of the 1945 Agreement. At night, the 2 Tank Division was alerted. 8 — On February 14, it joined the 1 Panzer Division. While “T-34 demonstrated power in front of the gates of Trieste, the communists of Yugoslavia put forward the slogan“ Damo's belly, Trest nedamo ”(“ I will give life, I will not give Trieste ”). One senior British official remarked: "Europe was on the threshold of the Third World War." On the night from 15 to September 16, the tanks attempted to enter the American zone, but reached the checkpoint and stopped. Received an order to return: Joseph Vissarionovich enlightened Tito!

T-34-85 Noah go to the parade in honor of the anniversary of the liberation of Belgrade from the German troops. Tanks pass along King Alexander Boulevard

In 1947 on the basis of previously approved credit (paid for supplying ore from Croatia) by rail Pancevo delivered 308 tanks T-34-85, 52 self-propelled SU-76, 59 12 tractor-I, C-tractors 20 65, 30 engines В2-34, 33 mobile workshops of types "A" and "B", scopes, gearboxes, pumps and other spare parts for tanks. All T-34-85s were divided into five tank brigades (1-I, 2-I, 3-I, 5-I, 6-I) and several separate battalions.

SU-76 on the teachings of Noahu, 1949 year

Soviet tracked tractor I-12 NOAU tows on trophy German 88-mm anti-aircraft gun FlaK-36

Half of the tanks had electric turnaround towers. In addition to tanks, 220 85-mm anti-aircraft guns (received the designation M-39) also entered Yugoslavia. The anti-aircraft ammunition batteries also included armor-piercing cumulative and sub-caliber projectiles, so that if necessary these batteries could quickly be included in the anti-tank defense system.

At first it was thought that there was no need to develop our own tank building, since everything needed could be obtained from the USSR. Part of the captured equipment (mainly Italian and French) production was donated to Albania and Israel.

But 29 June 1948 was the resolution of the Information Bureau of 1948, "On the situation in the Communist Party of Yugoslavia." Yugoslav leaders were accused of departing from Marxist-Leninist ideas, switching to the positions of nationalism, and the existing Yugoslav regime and the CPU were declared to be outside the Cominform. But the reliable reasons for the discord between Tito and Stalin are still unknown. Tito's independent actions in the Trieste area, in Greece, Albania, and Israel also did not help improve relations between the USSR and Yugoslavia.

Critics of Tito were also found in the higher officer circles of the Yugoslav army. General Arso Jovanovic (Chief of the General Staff of the Yugoslav Army until September 17 1945) did not hide his disappointment. And it was an experienced military leader, awarded the Order of Suvorov and Kutuzov I degree. Official история says that Arso and his countrymen from Montenegro tried to flee to Romania. Allegedly, he planned to cross the Yugoslav-Romanian border with General Branko Petrichivic and Colonel Vlad Dapchevich on a tank. T-34 was waiting for them at the Tank School in Belaya Tserkov (500 m from the border). The head of the school, Colonel Duklan Vukotic, was also a Montenegrin.

Why the plan failed is unknown. It is alleged that Arsu Jovanovic, along with his driver, was killed by border guards on the night of 11 in August of 1948, however, according to an unofficial version, the general was liquidated by Tito's agents in an apartment in Belgrade. And the whole story with an escape on a tank was invented in order to repress the pro-Soviet-minded personnel of the TSS.
Tank units began to concentrate in the eastern regions of Yugoslavia, in parts maintained a state of full combat readiness. Some tank battalions were on duty near the border.
Count on the purchase of spare parts and, especially, new tanks in the Soviet Union no longer accounted for. The West, even earlier, due to the complicated situation around Trieste, imposed restrictions on the export of military equipment to Yugoslavia. The armored forces of Yugoslavia, by the standards of that time, appeared to be quite modern, but because of the blockade, there were problems with maintaining the equipment in good condition. Repair options were also limited. In Mladenovce was the only workshop that repaired the T-34 and SU-85 and mastered the production of some spare parts.

However, in 1948, the design of a new tank based on the T-35-85 began. In 1950, the first tanks, created as part of this program, went through the parade in Belgrade. They received the name Vozilo-A or Type A. For the speed of creating their own tank, the Yugoslav designers actually copied the hull, chassis, engine and gun T-34-85. Frontal hull reservation was increased to 50-mm when tilted in 30 degrees, but the tower was developed independently. The new tower was an elliptical shape with enhanced armor: 100-mm - forehead, 82-86-mm board and 60-mm tower feed. The tank also received captured German sights, MG-42 machine guns, and an American Brouning M2 machine gun was installed on the roof of the turret. The gun, a copy of the Soviet 85mm C-53, received a muzzle brake of the German type. The radio station is English SET 19WF. The tanks turned out on 3-4 tons heavier than the T-34-85, they had problems with the engine and transmission, and therefore after the release of the pre-production lot in 5 or 7 machines were discontinued.

The first Yugoslav tank Vozilo-A in the military museum in Belgrade

It is also known about the pilot plant on the tank Vozilo-A 75mm guns from the tank Pz. Iv. However, Tito quickly found new patrons and from 1951, free military assistance from the USA and Great Britain began to come to Yugoslavia under the MDAP program.

In total, before 1958, Yugoslavia received:
- 630 tanks М4А3Е4 "Sherman", which Tito dreamed of during the war years (served until the year 1973);

American tank МХNUMXА4Е3 "Sherman" of the Yugoslav Army

- 319 of the latest American M47 "Patton" with an 90-mm gun (served until the 1988 of the year when they were sent to warehouses);

M-47 "Patton" JNA on the streets of Belgrade

- 399 anti-tank self-propelled gun M36А1 / А2 "Jackson";

SAU M36 "Jackson" on the teachings of the Yugoslav army

—240 anti-tank ACS M18 Hellcat;

—56 M7 Priest with 105-mm howitzer;

- X-NUMX US wheeled reconnaissance vehicles M-100 "Greyhound";

- American wheeled armored personnel carrier M3 Scout Car (used by the Yugoslav contingent of the UN in the Sinai Peninsula);

- 100 US semi-tracked armored personnel carriers M-3 and 15 created on their base anti-aircraft installations M-15, armed with 37-mm automatic gun МNNXXА1 and two 2-mm water-cooled machine guns.

However, the development of armored vehicles in Yugoslavia itself continued. The design of the tank was developed (according to other data of the self-propelled gun) Vozilo-B. It differed from the first type of installing 90-mm American guns with ACS M-36. Another attempt to create a modern medium tank using the T-34-85 tank design was in 1954-55 when the project was launched under the symbol M-628 (code "Galeb", "Chaika") with a revised powerplant and reinforced armor enclosures. The 2 version was developed with an X-NUMX-mm M-85AC tool and with an X-NUMX-mm M-628AR. A trial series of 90 vehicles without weapons and communication equipment was released, but they were not accepted for service, as both guns did not meet modern requirements for armor penetration.

In parallel with this project, a fundamentally new tank under the code M-1955 was developed from 320. For it was used undercarriage, modeled on the undercarriage of the tank M-47, the hull forms and turrets were original, designed to analyze the shape of the tanks М4, Т-34-85 and М47. Enclosure booking: VLD - 75 mm / 60 gr., NLD - 55 mm / 55 gr., Board - 35-50-mm, feed 35-mm, reservation of the tower: forehead - up to 105-mm, board and feed 50-52 mm Crew - 5 man. B2 engine - diesel. The gun 90-mm L / 52 with ammunition in 50 shells. A prototype was built, however, according to test results, it became clear that the tank was inferior to the M47 in combat properties, so it was not accepted for service.

In the middle of the 1950s, normalization of the relations of the SFRY with the USSR occurred, and military-technical cooperation was resumed. Among other things, an experimental batch of T-54 tanks was delivered to Yugoslavia. In total, 140 T-54 was supplied to Yugoslavia.

That tactical and technical data of this tank formed the basis of the requirements for the new Yugoslav tank, the draft of which was designated as M-636 "Condor" ("Condor"). The booking figures were close to the data for the T-54, the engine was used by the B-2 - the last upgrade - with the power of the 600 hp. Suspension of its own design type T-34. 90-mm cannon tested on the M-320. Later it was decided to use a copy of the Soviet 100mm gun with T-54 (this variant is known under the symbol M-636D). Experienced tanks were created in the 1959-60 years, but in addition to the design flaws, revealed a high cost of their production, worse performance, compared with the T-54 and the inability to quickly deploy mass production.

Josip Broz Tito inspects tank M-636; 1960 year

Another direction of the work of the Yugoslav tank builders in the 1950-ies was an attempt to modernize their Sherman МNNXX tanks. This tank was very popular with the Yugoslav military, but it no longer met the requirements set out in the 4 for armored vehicles. In the M1950-4 tank, the B-3 diesel engine, which was manufactured by the Yugoslav plant, was experimentally installed - the project received the cipher - M-2, but later they decided to abandon the modernization of the Shermans, and partly converted it into engineering equipment, and partly handed over to storage and transferred territorial troops.

The last attempt to re-equip Sherman into an ACS was made at the turn of the 50 / 60, when the M4 expertly installed the 122-mm gun, an analog of the Soviet A-19 cannon, using the B-4 engine installed in the M2. The machine received the index SO-122 (SO - self-propelled gun). However, the armor penetration capability of the 122-mm guns was lower than that of the T-100 54mm guns. The machine could not support the ACS due to the low elevation angle of the gun - only 10 c. In 1962, this project was closed.

Continued and the supply of Soviet military equipment. So in the late 50-s 40 anti-tank self-propelled guns SU-100 was delivered to Yugoslavia. Thus, Yugoslavia became the only European country where SU-100 was supplied outside the Warsaw Pact.

SU-100 on the teachings of JNA

From 1960 to 1961. 100 ZSU-57-2 anti-aircraft installations were supplied to Yugoslavia.

In 1962, 40 BTR-40 and 40 BTR-152 were delivered to Yugoslavia, however, they probably were not used for a long time and were removed from service because there are no references to their use in the Yugoslav wars.

1962 to 1963 100 amphibious tanks PT-76 entered into service with the JNA reconnaissance units.

There is also information that the YNA 63 th airborne brigade even received several ASU-57 self-propelled self-propelled guns, but there is no photo and video evidence of this.

From 1964, T-55 tanks began to be delivered to Yugoslavia, which became the basis of the JNA armored forces before the advent of the M-84. In total, Yugoslavia was supplied according to various estimates from 1600 to 1980 (from T-54) to T-55 tanks. and deliveries were carried out both from the USSR and from Poland and Czechoslovakia.

Yugoslav T-55

In the 1965, the USSR supplied 120 tracked BTR-50, which were mainly used in the JNA as control vehicles, and in the 1970, 50 BRDM-2.

BTR-50PU and BRDM-2 on the JNA exercises

BRDM-2 JNA at the parade in Belgrade 9 May 1985 of the year

In the same year, the 1965 in the USSR ordered the 80 BTR-60, most likely the control vehicles BTR-60PU, which were delivered in the 1966 year.

Meanwhile, in 1966, something incredible happened. Instead of writing off the "thirty-three", 600 adopted more such machines, in a modernized version (they became better known as T-34В), purchased in the USSR. At the beginning of the 1980's In connection with the decommissioning of the American M47 tanks, the Thirty-Fours drill was extended, although they were mainly used for training or for the protection of strategic points (military bases, airfields). At that time, their JNA included at least 1007 units. In the period from 1980 to 1987, a part of the tanks was handed over to infantry and motorized units, where the infantry worked through them to interact with armored vehicles. The Thirty-Fours were sent to 2 and 4, stationed in the cities of Niš and Pirot, 175-th proletarian regiment in Leskovac, 453-th infantry brigade in Rume and 228-th motorized brigade in Pivtsi. Although it is generally accepted that the Yugoslav T-34 entered into battle only in the 1991 year, in fact it happened much earlier. Strange as it may seem, for the first time since the end of the 2 World War I, the Yugoslav T-34s engaged in battle in Africa. As part of the provision of military technical assistance to the Angolan government in 1976, 51 tanks were allocated from the 10 motorcycle brigade. Together with the ammunition they were loaded onto a ship in the port of Ploce and sent to Africa in January. To compensate for the “losses”, the same number of tanks came from the 25 motorcycle brigade, which at that time was reequipped with the T-55.

Having failed with tanks, the Yugoslav designers decided to develop their own armored personnel carrier. The armored personnel carrier that received the M-60 index was developed by Yugoslav designers at the end of the 1950s and was first demonstrated at the 1965 parade in Belgrade. For a short time he wore the designation M-590.

The layout of this BTR is in many ways reminiscent of the famous American M-113, and the Soviet ACS SU-76 was used as a running gear, the 54 units of which were supplied in the 1947 year. The driver's seat is in the left front of the armored personnel carrier. Slightly behind is the commander’s seat from which he can use weapons: the M-53 machine gun was originally installed a copy of the famous German MG-42, caliber 7,92 mm, then replaced with an American Browning X-mmX mm, mounted on an open turret. Immediately behind the commander's seat is the troop compartment, designed for ten people. Landing took place through the doors in the rear of the hull, each of which is equipped with a viewing window. Also, three embrasures located on the sides.

The landing of troops from the B-armored personnel carrier M-60P at the JNA exercises

The BTR was equipped with a six-cylinder engine FAMOS 140 l. pp., thanks to which he could reach speeds up to 45 km / h and travel 400 kilometers at one gas station. The armor consisted of steel armor plates 25 mm thick. Also, the BTR was equipped with night vision devices.
The BTR was produced from 1962 of the year to 1979 of the year; more than about 600 vehicles came into service with the Yugoslav Army in several versions:

- landing BTR M-60P;

- anti-tank M-60PB, equipped with paired 82-mm recoilless guns mounted on the right or left of the stern of the machine. Targeting guns in the vertical plane is in the range of angles from -4 to + 6 °. The movement of guns in both vertical and horizontal planes is provided by manual drives. Ammunition consists of ten armor-piercing high-explosive shots;

- BTR with 82-mm mortar;

- minelayer;

- sanitary;

- team.

The 190 BTR M-60 were exported to Iraq, where they took part in the Iran-Iraq war.

In 1969, the Czechoslovak 30-mm ZSU M53 / 59 "Prague" entered into service with the JNA, at the same time its production began with the help of the Yugoslav industry. The armored hull of this ZSU is installed on a modified chassis of the Czechoslovak truck V-3S Prague. The engine is a six-cylinder diesel engine of air cooling "Tatra" T 912-2 with a capacity of 110 l. with. was in front of the ZSU. Its hood, like the crew cabin, was made of aluminum armor plates with the addition of titanium, the thickness of which in the frontal part reached 10 mm. The crew of three people was located in the cockpit, in the frontal armor sheet of which there are two windows that are covered with armor casks.

The ZSU armament is located in the rear, on a horizontal platform, and consists of an openly installed rotating M53 installation with two 30-mm automatic guns, whose firing range is 3000 m. Above the barrels of an anti-aircraft gun is located on a vertical spin-type magazine on 600 shells. Azimuth shelling is circular, and in the vertical plane from -800 hail. to + 50 hail. The transfer time from marching to martial status is one minute. It is possible to quickly dismantle the anti-aircraft installation using two retractable ramps mounted on the platform. It was assumed that ZSU will be able to destroy air targets flying at speeds up to 10 m / s and at altitudes up to 85 m, and it will be able to hit airborne troops and ground targets at ranges up to 350 m.

Among the shortcomings of this ZSU, it is worth noting the absence of a detection system, and the fact that the aiming was only visual.

By the beginning of the 1980s, the JNA received an 789 ZSU. "Prague" was attached to the mixed artillery-rocket battalions of the air defense ground brigades of the Yugoslav army. In each such division, among other things, 12 M53 / 59 was received. ZSU periodically upgraded.

Some Western sources claim that 1978 ZSU-48-23 Shilka was delivered from USSR to Yugoslavia in 4. However, this is hardly true, since in the wars that raged on the ruins of the former Yugoslavia, various, even the most ancient types of weapons were used, but there were no facts of the use of fairly modern Shilok. Also, the use of “Shilok” during the repulse of NATO aggression in 1999 was not noted, when even the ancient ZSU-57-2 were used.

4 May 1980 died Josip Broz Tito, who did not leave behind a successor, and until the collapse of the Second Yugoslavia there were a few years ...

Military parade JNA, 9 May 1975 of the year

On the materials of the sites:,

To be continued ...
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  1. Igor Pushkino
    Igor Pushkino 18 February 2015 07: 58
    Yugoslavia is very sorry. The policy of not joining did not lead to anything good.
    PS Ukraine there. You can’t suck two nipples ...
    1. URAL72
      URAL72 18 February 2015 13: 36
      “I am very sorry for Yugoslavia. The policy of not joining to anything good has not led.
      PS Ukraine is there. You can't suck two nipples. "

      A very strange comment ... Yugoslavia was brought down as soon as the union weakened. And the problem of Great Hohland is precisely that it has moved away from "a lot of vectors" (neutrality), strictly to the west. There was a draw - nobody touched ...
      1. Igor Pushkino
        Igor Pushkino 18 February 2015 14: 13
        As for Yugoslavia: Tito was building some kind of hybrid. Semi-capitalism is semi-socialism. But if I am not mistaken, he introduced the concept: politics is not joining. And he very skillfully used it. By the way, like China under Mao.
        They brought down about us when the Union weakened: I do not agree. Tito himself didn’t decide who he should be with. We could only help here indirectly.
        About Ukraine: You confirm my assumption: while the two nipples sucked, they didn’t particularly touch her. As soon as I looked the other way: unlike Tito and: it started.
        1. URAL72
          URAL72 18 February 2015 15: 46
          "You confirm my assumption"

          And I thought I refute laughing . Yugoslavia and Ukraine are two different things. In Ukraine, the cause of the collapse and war, was not a national, but an ideological and political conflict. Look at the results of any election on Wikipedia, (my) southeast stands out very clearly. Always Colorado. Tongue was just an excuse, the last straw. Here on both sides of the front they speak Russian, Ukrainian, and even more often on surzhik. In Yugoslavia, there has always been a conflict between Serbs and Croats. Yes, this is one Serbo - Croatian language group, but the Catholics are Croatian, and they never had a single state with the Serbs. Bosnia is even cooler - Muslim Bosnians - these are mostly Serbs! Yugoslavia is far more artificial in ethnic religious and cultural terms than Ukraine. Here (in Ukraine) the main problem is the economy. Representatives of one region do not support candidates from another and vice versa, since both of them succeeded each other, but did not achieve anything. The Maidan, organized by the West, simply became a pulled-down trigger, because power was again seized by the Western Ukrainians, led by Jewish oligarchs ...
          1. Soviet Union
            Soviet Union 18 February 2015 18: 58
            This is not one language group - this is one people!
            1. Aljavad
              Aljavad 19 February 2015 04: 10
              Soviet Union SU Yesterday, 18:58 ↑
              This is not one language group - this is one people!

              They don’t think so!

              Was there in 1993. Struck a degree of HATE. To all but myself beloved. All southern Slovenians are feral or corrupt Serbs. And for that they all deserved to die. All enemies. Worse than the Bulgarians - only Albanians. To kill everyone.

              In general, the Serbs command respect and sympathy. They love us very much (or rather, their ideal and mythical image of "Russia", which does not coincide with reality.)
              But the reigning hatred was astounding.

              And, of course, in Ukraine (Thank God!) This is not the case. In the Balkans, no one talks about the enemy "brothers" and the prisoners are not residents.
              And in this difference I see a ray of hope for Ukraine. Despite everything - Fraternal Ukraine!
    2. strong man
      strong man 18 February 2015 15: 41
      Ukraine is now fully sucking something from the overseas master and it’s definitely not a nipple, although Poland is also busy with this fascinating action judging by the recognition of its former Minister of Foreign Affairs Sikorsky !!
  2. Gans1234
    Gans1234 18 February 2015 08: 28
    Oh, thank you!! Just like I ordered !!)))
    A day passed and voila - article about Yugoslavia))
    1. igordok
      igordok 18 February 2015 12: 05
      Tell me. This is the 3 part about Yugoslavia. Where is the second?
  3. Gans1234
    Gans1234 18 February 2015 09: 24
    Special thanks for the parade.
  4. qwert
    qwert 18 February 2015 11: 09
    Everything mixed up in the Yugoslav house ... NATO, Soviet and their own samples ..
  5. Bongo
    Bongo 18 February 2015 12: 07
    Novel, excellent publication "+" good I hope there will be a continuation about the combat use of Yugoslav armored vehicles?
    1. Roman 1977
      18 February 2015 12: 14
      It will, certainly will. While some problems with moderators. The second part was corrected, the fourth Yugoslav armored vehicle was ready during the period of the breakup of Yugoslavia, and an article about the Yugoslav wars is being prepared, an episode is ready for Slovenia. As always a bunch of photos.
      And a few photos not included in the main text

      M-60 armored personnel carrier

      Yugoslav T-55 with a roller mine sweep

      T-55 YUNA


      M-7 "Priest"

      M-53/59 "Prague"

  6. Bongo
    Bongo 18 February 2015 12: 18
    Quote: Novel 1977
    So far, some problems with the moderators.

    I know this... what Sometimes publications are slowed down for unknown reasons. Well, we will wait.
    UNFAMILIAR 18 February 2015 13: 22
    But still, Soviet technology looks more elaborate than the one that Yugoslavia did not buy from us and developed itself.
    The novel is 1977, and do not tell me the name and the manufacturer of the clone "Opel Blitz", after all, they also participated in the war for Kosovo and in the mid-2000s they developed a transport-loading vehicle for air defense on its chassis, rummaged through the net, according to this capotnik information Have not found.
    1. Roman 1977
      18 February 2015 13: 54
      Automobile plant in Maribor (Slovenia), aka TAM (Tovarna Avtomobilov in Motorjev, TAM). Automotive was built in 1947 year. Production began with the development of the release of the licensed version of the Czechoslovak truck Praga RN. He produced trucks for JNA, in particular:



      Currently produces buses, in particular, in Russia operated urban buses TAM 260 A116M
        UNFAMILIAR 18 February 2015 14: 05
        Thanks for the detailed answer.
  8. moreman78
    moreman78 18 February 2015 14: 34
    Great article! Where is the 2nd part?
  9. Robert Nevsky
    Robert Nevsky 18 February 2015 20: 08
    As a child, in Bulgaria, I read a Yugoslav magazine, from about 1970. And there I saw photos of T-55 tanks.
    I could not see military equipment in Bulgarian magazines and it was interesting to me.