Customer Review

2 of 52 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Viking Regiment?, 23 Aug. 2011
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This review is from: VIKING PANZERS (Hardcover)
OK I admit I havent read this book yet, but I see there's quite a gaffe on the front cover. Viking is described as the 5 SS tank regiment, whereas in fact of course it was a DIVISION. The Viking was originally called Germania, formed in 1940, the first foreign Division in the Waffen-SS. It was upgraded to SS-Panzergrenadier-Division Wiking in November 1942, and finally designated in 1943 as 5.SS-Panzer-Division Wiking, when it became a fully fledged panzer Division. Ok I realise its just one of those silly mistakes but to see it on the front cover does make you wonder. I also see the previous reviewer refers to the Viking as a tank regiment. For such a well-known formation its hard to comprehend how such a mistake can have been made.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 30 Aug 2011 00:53:31 BDT
Last edited by the author on 30 Aug 2011 01:04:35 BDT
BLT says:
Wrong ! The book is only about Wiking division's panzer regiment. The men of that regiment wore the Wiking cuff-title as opposed to its divisional infantry sister units.

Also to brand the "Wiking" as the 1st foreign division in the w-ss is incorrect.

One of its 3 regiments, "Germania" Rgt's ranks and file remained of German extraction. "Nordland" made up of Scandinavians went on to become a Pzgren Div in its own right though its recruits went on to be Hungarian, Russian and Rumanian volksdeutsche for the most part.
Same with "Westland" originally made up of Dutch and Flemish recruits who in turn transferred into a Dutch division (Nederland), and Flemish division (Langemarck). "Westland" thus resorted to volksdeutsche recruits to reform.
As to divisional units such as the artillery regiment, the tank regiment or the reconnaissance battalion they always remained German for the vast majority of its members.

The first true foreign ss-division stricto sensu was the 13th, the "Handschar" division. The first w-ss formation made up of foreigners and not volksdeutsche.

In reply to an earlier post on 30 Aug 2011 11:31:20 BDT
tymo says:
Hi, yes I stand corrected if the book is about the tank regiment only. In many books, the Wiking is loosely described as the 'first foreign' division in the Waffen-SS. I believe the first non-Germanic unit were the Finnish volunteer batallion who served in the Wiking. You are quite correct about the 'Hanschar' division, the first true large foreign formation not to be composed of Aryan or Germanic troops

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Sep 2011 07:53:10 BDT
S. U. Larsen says:
I like it when a reviewer or commenter accepts a correction in good grace. Thanks for that :)

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Sep 2011 21:28:42 BDT
Last edited by the author on 9 Sep 2011 17:03:08 BDT
BLT says:
I agree, it proves someone's character and strong personality to admit a mistake; unlike some english professional reviewer who refuses to change his mind about a book he's rated 4 stars and I only 1, for reasons that I explain and which can be easily verified.

The book is G. Williamson's "German special forces of WW II" published by Osprey. The book's riddled with errors which I have carefully pointed out but this English reviewer refuses to admit he's wrong in giving 4 stars to such poor work. Can't anyone be fooled from time to time ?
In fits of rage and anger he's called me arrogant, mentally ill, etc ... just because I have pointed out the book's fault. Check it out !

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Sep 2011 00:23:07 BDT
E. Ulf says:
Yes, intellectual honesty has a wonderful sweetness and is sadly rare.

Ulf
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