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5.0 out of 5 stars A very useful summary of the development of winter and mountain warfare tactics in WW2, 12 May 2013
AK (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: World War II Winter and Mountain Warfare Tactics (Elite193) (Kindle Edition)
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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