Soviet light tanks developed from 1930 onwards and produced in greater numbers than any other tank of its time. The T-26 was a light tank used primarily in infantry support roles.
Republican T-26s used during the Spanish Civil War fought on 26 October 1936, under the command of Soviet Lieutenant Colonel Semyon Krivoshein, south of Madrid.
In battles such as Belchite and Teruel, the T-26 proved to be far superior to the German armored vehicles used by the Nationalists.
It was later used in the war against Finland, where results were mixed, partly due to the terrible weather conditions and impassable terrain, but it was in the undeclared war against Japan in 1939 that the T-26 achieved its moment of glory.
The Red Army was able to withstand the onslaught of the Japanese army in Manchuria, especially at the Battle of Nomonhan.
While the new German Panzer III and Panzer IV tanks are superior to the T-26, it was the German army's superior quality in the use of its armored vehicles that caused the defeat of the T-26.