The diorama was inspired by a photograph in Time magazine that I saw back in the 80’s. It showed a parade of IDF armory passing through some rubble streets of Beirut during the “Operation Peace for Galilee”. The diorama depicts a squadron of Merkava I MBT led by a U.S. made M113 APC, passing by a destroyed overpass. The fallen overpass section crushed a parked civilian car underneath.
The models were both from Tamiya. They were the earlier kits but, were to the standard we have come to expect from the manufacturer. The Merkava was the early version which was first extensively used in the 1982 war. It was built almost straight from the box. A detailed M2 Cal.50 machine gun and mount were added to the mantlet. Bedroll, tarps, air recognition flag, ammo boxes and other small items from various kits were added to the personal storage on the rear turret.
The M113 received more modifications. The kit I used was the very original Vietnam war version. I had added racks and storage on the sides, mesh wires were added to the vents on top and, an exhaust duct was made with sprue which was then wred with thin strips of masking tapes. I also added a red strobe light purchased from Radio Shack.
The soldiers were combinations of various makes such as Tamiya, DML, and Verlinden. The rubble and bridge remains were cast plaster. The car under the concrete slab was a 1/32nd scale model made by Arii. This diorama was built without any photoetch or resin update sets. There are now extensive photoetch and resin detail sets available in the market that will make detailing a little easier but doing it all yourself does add a fair amount of satisfaction to the finished model.