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The Mareth Line 1943: The end in Africa (Campaign) Paperback – 20 Oct 2012

4.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Osprey Publishing (20 Oct. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 178096093X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1780960937
  • Product Dimensions: 17.7 x 0.7 x 24.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 528,195 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

The Mareth Line 1943 is a high quality title filled with great maps, photos, illustrations, and information; and it's all presented in a magnificent way. --boltaction.net

The publisher, Osprey, should be applauded on the as always very clear maps and illustrations, which makes their books a joy to read. --Martijn Lak (The Journal of Slavic Military Studies)

This is a useful look at a period that is often skipped over in accounts of the fighting in North Africa.[…]The standard Campaign series structure works well here, with sections on the opposing commanders, armies and plans before the narrative, so the progress of the fighting can be understood in the context of each commander's aims. The text is clear, and is supported by excellent maps. Overall this is a good entry in this series, and provides useful detail on an important but unappreciated campaign. --History of War

Book Description

A highly illustrated account of the hard fighting in North Africa from the battle of El Alamein to defeat of the Axis forces in May 1943.

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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An excellent Osprey book on the last WWII North African battle. Well written informative and interesting, the book provides a very good overview of this campaign and includes a host of black and white photos and coloured illustrations and maps. Sold at a good price and quickly delivered, Highly recommended..
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Format: Paperback
The title of this Campaign book is a little misleading as the book picks up the action from the 4th November 1942 on the day when the Axis forces at El Alamein finally broke and ends with the surrender in Tunis in March 1943. Rather than `the end in Africa' a more fitting subtitle would have been `Monty's missed opportunities' as this account reads as a series of botched chances to finish the German and Italian armies starting with failures immediately following El Alamein and ending with delays in closing the gap between the advancing 1st Army and 8th Army in Tunisia in the final days of the campaign. It is fair to say that Monty does not come out of this well and it is pretty clear that the author is unimpressed by the generalship on display during this period.

From my point of view this is a very welcome addition to the Campaign series as the Mareth Line is one of those forgotten battles of WW2. Now that Osprey has covered most of the major battles of WW2 we now get down to the lesser known operations. It is though easy to see why this is an overlooked campaign. With the benefit of hindsight it is clear that the Axis forces in North Africa are finished and it is just a matter of time before the inevitable surrender happens. What we have therefore is the account of a series of retreats from one holding position to another with the British in pursuit. Could the campaign have been brought to a quicker end? It's hard to know for sure as Osprey format doesn't allow the space to argue the details of logistics and intelligence although I suspect that Mr Ford believes this was the case.

The main Operations of `Pugilist' and `Supercharge II' are well described and the text and maps makes these easy to follow.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a good read for anybody that hasn't much knowledge of the campaign and it has sufficient detail for wargamers.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars 13 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars End game in North Africa... 30 Oct. 2012
By HMS Warspite - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"The Mareth Line 1943" picks up World War Two's North African campaign at the conclusion of the Second Battle of El Alamain. Rommel's battered Panzerarmee Afrika began a difficult retreat back across the Libyan desert, just ahead of the victorious British Eighth Army led by General Bernard Montgomery. The long retreat would finally end at the Mareth Line along the Libyan border with Tunisia, as Rommels' German and Italian troops turned to face their pursuers from the cover of pre-war French fortications, augmented by minefields, wire, and the desert itself.

"The Mareth Line 1943" follows the standard Osprey Campaign format. It includes an introduction to the North African theater of war; descriptions of the opposing commanders, their armies, and their plans; and a narrative of the fight for the Mareth Line. A well-written text is nicely supplemented by an outstanding collection of photographs, illustrations, maps and diagrams of the various battlefields.

Author Ken Ford offers much of interest in this concise account. He narrates the growing disenchantment of an exhausted Rommel with a doomed campaign, which attitude led to his removal from the theater after he had somehow shepherded his forces to the relative safety of the Mareth Line. Ford is quite critical of General Montgomery, whose mastery of the set-piece battle did not extend to the fluid conditions of the pursuit across Libya and the initial attempts to "break-in" the Mareth Line. The much-maligned Italian leadership shows surprisingly well at the end of the campaign.

"The Mareth Line 1943" is highly recommended to the interested general reader and to the student looking for a quick version of the end of the North African campaign.
4.0 out of 5 stars A Useful Detailed Description 3 Mar. 2013
By Mikebish - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a narrow topic that gets brief mention in most overall histories of the North African campaigns. The book is clear and easy to read with adequate but not too much detail. The maps and illustrations are especially helpful to a military novice like me. The Mareth Line battles are given enough before and after context to place them in the flow of the North African campaigns but not so much as to detract from the specialized narrative.
5.0 out of 5 stars I always enjoy the Osprey military series 13 Jan. 2017
By al - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Another excellent Osprey book on WW2 for my summer camp programs.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved this book! 28 July 2013
By iam4navy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a lifelong student of World War II this gave extra details that I had not known - Great maps & charts to follow - An easy read for so much information.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Mereth Line 13 Feb. 2013
By writer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I found this book difficult to follow . It was very accurate in details on all parties and units involved on both sides and all nationalities. It is an accurate history of the North African war. It is not exciting reading unless you are a student of that time period and war and the interface of the countries on both sides. The war made Rommel an international wonder as the Desert Fox and spelled out how the Germans and Italians lost the war through lack of effective support from their political leaders and the inability to provided needed supplies and replacements. The war was seen by Churchill as a back entry into europe through Sicily by using North Africa as the jumping off point. This is not a book for the lay audience to read for pleasure.
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