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Metz 1944 (Campaign) Paperback – 20 Mar 2012

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Product details

  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Osprey Publishing; First Edition edition (20 Mar. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849085919
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849085915
  • Product Dimensions: 18.5 x 0.8 x 24.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 621,843 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"This is another little gem of a book from Osprey, which excels at publishing excellent accounts of World War II battles and personalities."- Al Hemingway, "WWII History "(Early Winter 2013)

About the Author

Steven J Zaloga received his BA in History from Union College and his MA from Columbia University. He has worked as an analyst in the aerospace industry for over two decades, covering missile systems and the international arms trade, and has served with the Institute for Defense Analyses, a federal think-tank. He is the author of numerous books on military technology and military history, with an accent on the US Army in World War II as well as Russia and the former Soviet Union.

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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Dave History Student on 24 Mar. 2012
Format: Paperback
About twelve years ago Mr Zaloga wrote "Lorraine 1944". It was Campaign 75 that presented select coverage of Patton's 3rd Army fighting for control of the Moselle River south of Metz. With his latest book Campaign 242, "Metz 1944", the author completes the story of the difficulties Patton's XX AC and XII AC had in taking the Moselle River line and reaching the German border. Metz 1944 is an excellent primer and with his other book makes an overall excellent foundation that for many of us would not need to research further.
The time period is between September 1944 through December 1944 and the author explains the perfect storm that Patton, Walker and Eddy found themselves in. They were up against well prepared defenses along the river and especially at Metz with its fortress complex that was blocking the best route to reach Germany. It was also the rainiest fall in thirty years and the tanks and men were having a tough time moving in the mud and across the swollen river. It was also the time that General Eisenhower shut down Patton's supplies of fuel, ammo and food in favor of Marshall Montgomery's Operation Market-Garden. This effectively halted Patton's advance. Though it worked against Gen Bradley, Gen Patton did receive one lucky break in that 5th PzA under Manteuffel was redeployed north to take part in the Ardennes Offensive.
This and more will be learned by reading the first two chapters: Introduction and the " The Strategic Setting". These chapters were concise but very good and helps bring the reader up to speed for when the Campaign starts. The author devotes 53 pages to the campaign and covers it quite well.
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Format: Paperback
METZ is where the US Third Army realized that it was not going to be over by Christmas, 1944. This is an excellent telling on the story with the constraints (limited size, no footnotes) of an Osprey history while making full use of the series' opportunities to present division-level order of battle, excellent operational and tactical maps, and illustrations recreating specific tactical situations. A great way to cram a lot into a relatively few pages. It also demonstrates a greater awareness of the enemy than that reflected in the US Army's "Green Book" official history treatment of Metz.
While the author quite rightly points out that Third Army performed well in comparison with the other Allied armies in the frustrating autumn of 1944, it does implicitly demonstrate that even with the Patton cachet, the US armored thrusts were an order of magnitude less in size and depth than those the Red Army was capable of in the same period. Could Metz and its bridges have been bypassed like the Channel forts? Probably not. Were the fortifications important? At a tactical level, yes, even if the operational level limitations of concrete defenses had been demonstrated at the Atlantic Wall in 1944 and the Maginot Line in 1944.
Could Osprey please do Bologna 1944-45 from the same author? It would give a good comparison with how things were done in Italy at about the same time.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Gisli Jokull Gislason VINE VOICE on 10 May 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Zaloga has done an excellent job at bringing the battle of Metz to life. He has already written a good account of the Lorraine battles in September 1944:Lorraine, 1944: Patton Vs. Manteuffel: Patton Versus Manteuffel (Osprey Military Campaign) and the battles of Metz are a good follow up on this.

Patton was a remarkable man and left a standing legacy, one of his less famous quotes is:

"Fixed fortifications are a monument to the stupidity of man." - Patton

How he was to be proved wrong at Metz with their pre- World War I fortifications and second rate troops. Even worse when handled by stornger formations such as Eastern Front Veterans from a NCO school.

All of this Zaloga presents in a proffessional manner and even if I liked his book on the Lorraine Campaign a little better it is still a good book.

Promblem is that it is a bad Kindle book. Face it, with Osprey you get a tight overview in less than 90 pages (96 total but plenty of index and blank pages) and this is partly made up with clear and well done maps and pictures and it is with these extras that the Kindle goes wrong.

No colour to start but that would be ok if the maps weren't broken up into 6 sections to bring the detail. So you have no overview at all and it becomes tedious in the extreme trying to follow anything on a map and in this book there are several.

Pictures are small and overall this is not a book you would want in this form.

The strength of the Osprey books (at least the good ones) is they get an idea through in a short space. For this you need clear maps and such and this Kindle fails to provide.
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