On the battlefields of Europe and North Africa during the Second World War tanks played a key role, and the intense pressure of combat drove forward tank design and tactics at an extraordinary rate. In a few years, on all sides, tank warfare was transformed. This is the dramatic process that Simon and Jonathan Forty chronicle in this heavily illustrated history.
They describe the fundamentals of pre-war tank design and compare the theories formulated in the 1930s as to how they should be used in battle. Then they show how the harsh experience of the German blitzkrieg campaigns in Poland, France and the Soviet Union compelled the Western Allies to reconsider their equipment, organization and tactics - and how the Germans responded to the Allied challenge.
The speed of progress is demonstrated in the selection of over 180 archive photographs which record, as only photographs can, the conditions of war on each battle front. They also give a vivid impression of what armoured warfare was like for the tank crews of 75 years ago.
The German panzer armies that swept into the Soviet Union in 1941 were an undefeated force that had honed their skill in combined arms warfare to a fine edge. The Germans focused their panzers and tactical air support at points on the battlefield defined as Schwerpunkt - main effort - to smash through any defensive line and then advance to envelope their adversaries.
Initially, these methods worked well in the early days of Operation Barbarossa and the tank forces of the Red Army suffered defeat after defeat. Although badly mauled in the opening battles, the Red Army's tank forces did not succumb to the German armoured onslaught and German planning and logistical deficiencies led to over-extension and failure in 1941\. In the second year of the invasion, the Germans directed their Schwerpunkt toward the Volga and the Caucasus and again achieved some degree of success, but the Red Army had grown much stronger and by November 1942, the Soviets were able to turn the tables at Stalingrad.
Robert Forczyk's incisive study offers fresh insight into how the two most powerful mechanized armies of the Second World War developed their tactics and weaponry during the critical early years of the Russo-German War. He uses German, Russian and English sources to provide the first comprehensive overview and analysis of armored warfare from the German and Soviet perspectives. His analysis of the greatest tank war in history is compelling reading.
The authoritative naval historian Bernard Ireland takes a fresh and fascinating look at the long and bitter struggle waged by the Allies against the Nazi U-boat threat. After sifting through the evidence, old and new, he questions the popular theory that it was a 'damn close-run thing'. He cites the massive resources that the United States brought to bear both at sea and in their shipyards, together with advances in technology and the breaking of German codes by Enigma. Far from 'revisionist' history, this is a closely argued work that demands reading.
History has recorded that the first ever powered flight took place at Kitty Hawk in America, on 17 December 1903 and was carried out by the Wright brothers, Orville and Wilbur, who were aircraft designers and manufacturers. By the time of the outbreak of the First World War, aviation was only eleven years old. The daddy of battlefield warfare until that point in time had been the cavalry, a position it maintained even as war was declared on the Western Front.
Aircraft were not initially seen as an offensive weapon and were instead used by both sides as observation platforms, or to take aerial photographs from. Even when they were eventually used in an offensive capacity, they did not have machine guns attached to them; if the crew wanted to open fire then they had to use a pistol or rifle.
As the war progressed so the use of aircraft changed from being an observational tool, to that of a fighter and bomber aircraft - something that had never been foreseen at the outbreak of the war. The book then looks at the fighter aces from all sides. These were pilots who had been credited with shooting or forcing down a minimum of five enemy aircraft, of which their were hundreds. While some of these aces survived, many of them were killed. The most famous fighter ace of all is without doubt the German pilot known as the Red Baron, Manfred von Richthofen.
The Great War tore Europe apart killing over 35 million men and challenging the notion of heroism. Air and Sea Power in World War I focuses on the experience of World War I from the perspective of pilots and sailors and demonstrates that the army-centric view of war studies has been too limited.
The Royal Flying Corps, created in 1912, adapted quickly to the needs of modern warfare and was driven by the enthusiasm of its men. In contrast, the lack of modernisation in the Royal Navy, despite the unveiling of HMS Dreadnought in 1906, undermined Britain's dominance of the seas. By considering five key aspects of the war experience, this book analyses how motivation was created and sustained: what training did men receive and how effectively did this prepare them for roles that were predominantly non-combative? How was motivation affected by their individual relationship with weaponry development, and how different was defensive service on the Home Front, when in close proximity to ordinary civilian life?
Featuring new primary source material, including the journals of service men themselves, this book looks at the changing reputation of the services during and after the First World War and the extent to which these notions were created by the memoirs of pilots and sailors. This will be essential reading for students and scholars of World War I and of Naval, Aviation and Military.
Frederick, Dubbed The Enlightened Despot, Showed His Expertise At Military Matters By His Defence Of Territory In The Seven Years War. Fundamentals Of Warfare, Leadership Qualities, Value Of Surprise, Defeating An Enemy With Superior Numbers. This Book Was Endorsed By Napoleon Himself. Frederick Asserted ""War Is Not An Affair Of Chance.""