In the 1930s Red Army Command maintained what was often an offensive doctrine. The plan was to fight a bloodless victory on foreign ground. An offensive by the Worker's and Peasant's Red Army was to unfold as per the classic Blitzkrieg - it was with good reason that some of the higher ranking commanders had studied at the German General Headquarters Academy. Furthermore all the technical achievements of the period were taken into account. The assault would begin with air strikes from strategic aviation: armadas of huge bombers would attack key targets deep inside enemy territory. At the same time enormous numbers of airborne troops would be dropped behind enemy lines, armed with a range of equipment. These airborne troops would capture bridges, and roads, and take communications, and transport links out of action. Heralded by a powerful artillery attack, supported by tactical aviation the tanks, armoured vehicles, and trucks carrying motorised infantry would advance.
There was a basis for such optimistic forecasts. Since the Soviets were in possession of such a quantitative, and qualitative advantage (and this was certainly the case) they were definitely able to advance. In the USSR aviation was undergoing development ahead of schedule, as were armoured tank technology, airborne assault troops, and chemical weapons. If the Soviets had tanks, aircraft, and chemical weapons, albeit in small quantities, any potential enemies would possess them too. The airborne assault troops however were a distinctly Soviet innovation. In this respect it was the Soviets that held an unquestionable advantage. It was here that the first groups of airborne paratroopers were dropped, and the first tanks and guns were dropped from the skies. The Red Army was conducting mass airborne assault operations during the course of exercises when no other nation on Earth had airborne assault troops.
In other field's Soviet military science and technology in many cases copied existing Western achievements. Licenses were obtained, or examples of foreign materiel were simply copied. As far as the airborne troops were concerned the Soviet military, and the designers were in unchartered territory, having come up with a number of innovative solutions, which were later adopted by the armed forces of other nations.
In this book the armament, equipment, and military hardware developed for airborne troops is described, both in terms of the actual technology, and the clearly fantastical, which only reflected the unrestrained imagination of the designers. A significant amount of attention is devoted to the aircraft, from which it was planned airborne troops would be dropped. The exercises that saw airborne troop drops are described, as well as the role airborne troops played in actual operations in the period up to 1941.
This book has been written on the basis of a number of documents that the author has discovered in the archives, and in museum collections. This work draws upon the memoirs of the pioneer military paratroopers in the USSR, some of which have never been published before.
The Sukhoi Design Bureau was tasked in 1969 with developing a fourth-generation heavy fighter and thus began the story of the Su-27, known to the western world as the Flanker--an aircraft which turned out to be one of the most successful Soviet fighter designs.
This book tells the story of how the original project developed, how the final configuration of what was known as the T-10 was selected and why the brave decision to scrap the original project and rework it as the T-10S was taken, a decision that proved to be justified. The book covers the design and testing of the prototypes in both configurations, the production entry of the basic Su-27 single-seat fighter and the Su-27UB two-seat combat trainer together with the efforts of Sukhoi to keep them up to date with mid-life upgrades to Generation 4++' (Su-35S) level. The operational histories of Su-27 versions including the Su-30/Su-34/Su-35 are also described.
When the Soviet Navy decided to bolster its fleet with carriers optimized for conventional take-off and landing (CTOL) aircraft, Sukhoi responded by developing the Su-27K, which later entered service as the Su-33, Russia's first operational CTOL shipboard fighter. These naval variants are included in the book as is a chapter describing the story of how China purchased license manufacturing rights for the Su-27 and went on to develop its own versions with indigenous avionics and weapons, including the basic J-11 fighter and the J-15 Flying Shark--a clone of the Su-33.
The post-Soviet republics included, the Su-27/Su-30/Su-34/Su-35 family has seen service with nearly 20 nations, including places as far apart as Vietnam, Malaysia, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Angola, India and Venezuela.
The book describes in depth the development and operational career of the Su-27 family, including mid-life upgrades and the latest variants, and features detailed fleet lists. Richly illustrated with color photographs, line drawings and color profiles of the various color schemes carried by the type, this is the definitive work on a truly outstanding aircraft.
This books looks of the British Army's supply service, how it developed, and how it failed - especially in the Crimea War - and how reforms in the 19th century reformed it. It examines how the lines of communication functioned during WW1 and the strains on it during the March 1918 German offensive. The focus of the book looks at the developments in the interwar years, and how it functioned during the French Campaign of May/June 1940. The role of the LOC after the German breakthrough in France has been underestimated and under reported. This part of the British Army performed well in difficult circumstances but individual efforts could not compensate for the woeful lack of organisation, equipment and training, nor that few if any senior officers had either experience or training to carry out the posts they occupied. Only the fortuitous mechanisation of the general transport system of the Army, not due to doctrine or foresight but a dearth of horses in the civil economy, enabled the Army to retreat faster and further than their horse bound allies - the French - and enemies - the Germans. There was bloody-mindedness on the part of the regimental officers and rank and file soldiers to do their best in difficult circumstances.
The six-month siege of Khe Sanh in 1968 was the largest, most intense battle of the Vietnam War. For six thousand trapped U.S. Marines, it was a nightmare; for President Johnson, an obsession. For General Westmoreland, it was to be the final vindication of technological weaponry; for General Giap, architect of the French defeat at Dien Bien Phu, it was a spectacular ruse masking troops moving south for the Tet offensive. With a new introduction by Mark Bowden-best-selling author of Hu? 1968-Robert Pisor's immersive narrative of the action at Khe Sanh is a timely reminder of the human cost of war, and a visceral portrait of Vietnam's fiercest and most epic close-quarters battle. Readers may find the politics and the tactics of the Vietnam War, as they played out at Khe Sahn fifty years ago, echoed in our nation's global incursions today. Robert Pisor sets forth the history, the politics, the strategies, and, above all, the desperate reality of the battle that became the turning point of U.S. involvement in Vietnam.
This is a major new account of the Battle of Jutland, the key naval battle of the First World War in which the British Grand Fleet engaged the German High Seas Fleet off the coast of Denmark in 1916. Beginning with the building of the two fleets, John Brooks reveals the key technologies employed, from ammunition, gunnery and fire control, to signalling and torpedoes, as well as the opposing commanders' tactical expectations and battle orders. In describing Jutland's five major phases, he offers important new interpretations of the battle itself and how the outcome was influenced by technology, as well as the tactics and leadership of the principal commanders, with the reliability of their own accounts of the fighting reassessed. The book draws on contemporary sources which have rarely been cited in previous accounts, including the despatches of both the British and German formations, along with official records, letters and memoirs.
`THE BIG SHOW IS AS CLOSE AS YOU'LL EVER GET TO FIGHTING YOUR LIFE FROM THE COCKPIT OF A SPITFIRE OR TYPHOON. PERHAPS MOST VISCERALLY EXCITING BOOK EVER WRITTEN BY A FIGHTER PILOT' Rowland White, Author of Vulcan 607
Pierre Clostermann DFC was one of the outstanding Allied aces of the Second World War. A Frenchman who flew with the RAF, he survived over 420 operational sorties, shooting down scores of enemy aircraft, while friends and comrades lost their lives in the deadly skies above Europe. The Big Show, his extraordinary account of the war has been described as the greatest pilot's memoir of WWII.
This action-packed narrative history of destroyer-class ships begins with destroyers' first incarnation as torpedo boats in 1898 through the last true combat service of the ships in the Vietnam War. Nicknamed "tin cans" or "greyhounds," destroyers were quick naval ships used to defend larger battleships-and they proved indispensable in America's military victories. In Tin Cans and Greyhounds, author Clint Johnson brings readers inside the quarter-inch hulls of destroyers to meet the men who manned the ships' five-inch guns and fought America's wars from inside a "tin can"-risking death by cannon shell, shrapnel, bomb, fire, drowning, exposure, and sharks
The First World War and German National Identity is an original and carefully researched study of the coalition between Imperial Germany and Austria-Hungary during the First World War. Focusing on the attitudes taken by governmental circles, politically active groups, intellectuals, and the broader public towards the German-speaking population in the Habsburg Monarchy, Jan Vermeiren explores how the war challenged established notions of German national identity and history. In this context, he also sheds new light on key issues in the military and the diplomatic relationship between Berlin and Vienna, re-examining the German war aims debate and presenting many new insights into German-Hungarian and German-Slav relations in the period. The book is a major contribution to German and Central European history and will be of great interest to scholars of the First World War and the complex relationship between war and society
Last Post Over the River Kwai is the carefully researched account of the experiences of the officers and men of 2nd Battalion The East Surreys during the Second World War.
Stationed in Shanghai in the early 1940s, the Battalion was deployed to Malaya and fought gallantly to slow the Japanese advance. After heavy losses the survivors found themselves POWs in Singapore in February 1942 after the humiliating surrender which Churchill described as Britain's worst ever military disaster.
The next three and a half years saw members of the Battalion suffering appalling hardship at the hands of their brutal Japanese captors, whether in Singapore, on the Death Railway, Malaya or Japan itself, as wells as on hellships. Many died but remarkably the majority survived to tell their story. Their prolonged captivity with unbelievable hardship, deprivation and cruelty makes for distressing but inspiring reading.
This new book in the popular Polish Wings series tells the story of the famous German parasol-winged WWI fighter monoplane in Polish Air Force service.
The Polish Air Force captured 17 of these Fokkers, but only seven (six E.V and one D.VIII) were in airworthy condition. All were used against Bolshevik forces in the Polish-Soviet War of 1919-1920. Lieutenant Stefan Stec earned the first kill for the Polish Air Force, by shooting down a Ukrainian Nieuport fighter on 29 April 1919. In 1921, the remaining Fokkers were withdrawn from front-line units and transferred to the Szkola Obslugi Lotniczej (Air Personnel School) at Poznan-Lawica airfield.
The book includes over 120 photographs and nearly 30 colour plates to profusely illustrate these aircraft. Their technical details, military markings and maintenance stencils are shown in the detail.