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World War II Winter and Mountain Warfare Tactics (Elite) Paperback – 8 Apr 2013

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Product details

  • Paperback: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Osprey Publishing (8 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849087121
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849087124
  • Product Dimensions: 18.5 x 0.6 x 24.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 474,601 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

Museum curator and university external examiner Dr Stephen Bull studied at the University of Wales, and worked at the BBC and National Army Museum in London. Now Curator of Military History and Archaeology for Lancashire County Museums he has completed an MBA, and been elected Member of the Chartered Institute for Archaeologists. Published in a variety of languages on both sides of the Atlantic he was listed for the Portico Prize for Literature. His latest book 'The Old Front Line' is published in the UK and US, and now translated into Dutch.

Stephen has made many TV and radio appearances including the series 'Battlefield Detectives' and 'Instruments of Death', both shown internationally, and the BBC 'One Show'. His book of the Channel 4 series 'Last War Heroes', is available in North American, UK and Norwegian editions. The series took Canadian Screen Award for 'best history' under its US title 'D-Day to Victory' in 2013. A consultant to the University of Oxford, Stephen has assisted in the creation of a European database to document the individual experience of the First World War through archives, photographs, and objects. The photograph shows Stephen (right) with Lorenz Andraes at the German National Library, 'DNB', Frankfurt.

Product Description


For anyone with an interest in the Eastern Front, this book will be a welcome addition to the library. --Military Modelcraft International

About the Author

DR STEPHEN BULL is Curator of Military History and Archaeology for Lancashire Museums, with particular responsibility for local regimental collections, and is a consultant for the University of Oxford on World War I projects. He has previously worked at the National Army Museum and the BBC in London. A Member of the Institute of Archaeologists, he has also appeared in the TV series Battlefield Detectives, Lost Treasures, and Instruments of Death. His other books include six Osprey titles - two on World War I, and four on World War II.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By AK TOP 500 REVIEWER on 12 May 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Given how important a part winter played in WW2 it is certainly welcome to shed some light on the way varying armies dealt with its effects and how the doctrines of various armies evolved to take account of this. The book gives a sufficiently solid overview of the topic and draws on both published manuals of various WW2 combatants (primarily those of Germany, the Soviet Union, the UK and the US), as well as real world experience (mostly from the Winter War and the war in the East).

Topics covered range from small unit tactics, to proper equipment, weather protection, camouflage, the use of ski units, transport, appropriate defensive positions, to the time differences in conducting operations or the varying effectiveness of weapons in such circumstances. Some of the more famous mountain / winter focused units from various armies are also mentioned and quite some space is taken up by describing the training efforts undertaken.

The early learning primarily drew on the Finnish and Scandinavian experience as far as Winter went and on the German and Austrian (and to a lesser extent British from the Northwestern Frontier) one for mountain units.

These lessons took anywhere between two to three years to get fully and the winter preparedness of the major combatants' forces was certainly getting reasonable late in the war.

The book is written in a very readable style and the illustrations (some bespoke, while others are taken from / based on WW2 manuals) do an excellent job of graphically presenting the points made.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Tactics for cold combat... 8 Jun. 2013
By HMS Warspite - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"World War II Winter and Mountain Warfare Tactics" is a surprisingly detailed Osprey Elite Series entry focusing on the ways European armies adapted to fighting in extreme conditions, or in some cases, failed to adapt. British historian Stephen Bull is the author; Steve Noon provided the illustrations.

After a brief introduction, the book addresses the use of winter and mountain tactics in successive campaigns: Finland 1939-1940, Norway 1940, and Russia in the winters of 1941-42 and 1942-43. The narrative focuses primarily on the need of the German and Soviet armies to conduct sustained campaigning under adverse conditions, especially the cold. The author notes how the failure to prepare handicapped the Soviets in Finland in 1939 and the Germans outside Moscow in 1941. Several chapters discuss specific adaptations in tactics, equipment, uniforms, unit organization and fortifications. The author indicates that other armies, particularly the U.S., freely copied doctrinal materials generated by the Germans and Soviets. The text is nicely enhanced by photographs, maps, diagrams and illustrations, including graphics from period military manuals.

The scope of this short book is limited. Mountain units fielded by Britain, France, and the U.S. get light coverage. The book does not address, for example, mountain warfare in the China-Burma-India theater, or winter warfare in Alaska, while Italy gets only the barest mention, all of which might justify another Osprey entry on this topic.

"World War II Winter and Mountain Warfare Tactics" is recommended to the interested general reader and to the student of military tactics.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
WWII Winter/Mountain tactics by Osprey Elite 193 7 Jun. 2013
By Michael Reese - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Good coverage of winter combat, tactics, equipment. Covers Finnish, Russian Front more than Western Europe which is limited to the Norwegian Campaign in 1940. Some good information on fortifications, transportation, individual equipment and tactics used in the harsh conditions found on the Eastern Front in winter. Color drawings good. Recommend.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Good for beginners 15 Jan. 2015
By Tiber - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Like the other Osprey books of this series, it is a tease into what really went on. It is a great book for a novice, but a person who really studies this kind of stuff would be much better served looking elsewhere. I would recommend the manuals put out by the US Army on Mountain Climbing and Tactics or even better, the Military Libraries version of the WW2 German Manual. And don't pay for the translated German manual from a vendor, it is available FREE and Translated through the government.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Five Stars 3 Dec. 2014
By RAYMOND C. CLAY - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
thank you
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