With the end of hostilities in the Second World War, the US Army had a huge inventory of M24sr some 3833 examples, and requirements from many Allied nations (and some former enemies) for tanks to re-equip armoured units reforming after the war. There were also plans to distribute a large number of M24s to National Guard units across the country. Some deficiencies and problems had been identified during the war and most M24s were modified to improve their capabilities. The wartime T72 steel tracks were replaced with a new T85E1 rubber chevron track very similar to the T49 tracks on many M4 Shermans, the aft-mounted turret .50 M2HB machine gun was relocated to the forward turret roof, and the 2 inch smoke mortar was eliminated and its place used to mount a second antenna for extra radio equipment. Early tanks were also fitted with the mounts for the wading pontoons that were on the later M24s. Not all modifications appeared on every M24, but most of the post-war tanks did have most of them.
Nobody will doubt that airflow was the same on both sides of the iron curtain. The same phenomenon has happened many times - for instance in the late forties when piston-driven fighters were on the eclipse whilst at the same team reaching the pinnacle of design, soon to be replaced by jets. New airfoils and bigger and stronger engines continued to dictate design features. So, to counter increased torque and decreased forward visibility on a taildragger, designers at Grumman, Boeing and Hawker, to name but a few, seem to have come to the same solutions. Increase the tail section area for better stability, widen the undercarriage track to improve handling and raise the pilot for better visibility. These common conclusions resulted in elegant and powerful machines like the F8F, the Boeing XF8B-1 and the Sea Fury. Vickers-Supermarine was no exception to this trend, by now making a last effort to breathe further life into the venerable Spitfire design.
The South African Air Force was established on 1 February 1920 and has seen action during World War II and the Korean War. From 1966 the SAAF was involved in initially a low intensity conflict, colloquially termed as 'The Border War' in Angola (now Namibia) and Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe). As the war progressed, the intensity of air operations increased until the late 1980s, when the SAAF was required to fly fighter missions against Angolan aircraft in order to maintain tactical air superiority. When the conflict ended in 1990 the SAAF reduced its aircraft numbers dramatically due to economic pressures, as well as the cessation of hostilities with other neighboring states. Today the SAAF has a limited air combat capability, albeit with fourth generation aircraft, and has been structured towards regional peace-keeping, disaster relief and maritime patrol operations.