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Elite Units of the German Army 1939-1945

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  • Blood steel myth seems to be the only book that actually "describes" what the fighting at kursk was like at the small unit level. The other books are pure operational histories.

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    • Oh yes! That is what I like most about Nipe, also Nash. They are both very very tactical in their descriptions, and delve down into the lower levels of command. Yet, at the same time they describe the larger operational aspect. Another author that is very good at that is Tieke. For Stalingrad the best author in this "tactical" style is Jason Mark.

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      • ^^

        I finished ZB-II. It was superb. Now on to, Nipe's kursk book.. while his style is free-flowing, I am cautious when I read it as I know that he takes primary sources and "filters" it through his mind. Most authors, they would just post excerpts, which actually bloats the page count.

        Jason Mark's book still stands out to me as the best tactical account for a Pz division.

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        • I have read numerous times in various sources that Otto Ernst Remer, though an excellent and successful SPW Battalion commander was not a capable brigade/division commander. I have read Spaeter's excellent three volume history of Panzerkorps Grossdeutschland, and in the Ardennes, Remer doesn't come off as being incompetent at all. I have just finished Bergstrom's excellent Ardennes book and Remer and the FBB seemed to have performed extremely well in the Ardennes. They seem to be one of the better of the German armored forces, especially in the defense!!! This comes as a surprise considering what one reads about Remer. Through their battle in Pomerania, and especially in Upper Silesia, the FBD seems to have performed decently. I know about Lauben, and his decisions there were considered controversial, but other than that I can't find any other information about incompetence, to the contrary. What this says of Remer's command I don't really know. However I was just curious if anyone had any relevant information concerning his performance as a brigade/division commander. If, for example, anyone has read the biography of Remer by Ralph Tegethoff, perhaps you can inform me of what is said in that book. Thank you very much for your help.
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          • ^
            If there is no source for that comment- maybe that's a rumor?

            BTW what are the differences between Thunder at P, Kursk (Glantz), Zamulin vs. Blood Steel Myth?

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            • It probably is a rumor more based on his postwar "Nazi" activities. It sounds more like a smear, and even Lauben is not black and white......I would guess the main difference between T. at Prok. and Kursk (Glantz) is T. at Prok. is a compilation of every available source so far published put together in a very readable way (to me it's the best single source on the entire battle of Kursk so far), Glantz's book on Kursk is good, though a little dated, and mostly from the Russian perspective. Blood Steel Myth compared with Zamulin, is primarily a difference between the German and Russian perspectives.....

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              • ^
                Oh yeah, I know the differences (I have all except Zamulin). I meant in terms of the war narrative (if you read them all).

                That Remer guy, if you check his photos- literally aged 20 years in 6 years during WW2.

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                • Do you have a copy of Zetterling, Normandy 1944?

                  I am reading "British Armour in the Normandy Campaign 1944" recently. The author has a big axe to grind and is trying to improve the reputation of british doctrinal method. But is an interesting book regardless of numerous disagreements and brings together many sources including the unit histories.

                  I also have "The Armoured Campaign in Normandy" on my list.

                  Originally posted by krichter33 View Post
                  For Caen the most detailed work I have, that is EXTREMELY tactical and detailed is the 12SS unit history by Hubert Meyer, but of course it is very very biased. Why do proper Anglo-American historians ignore the Western Front? All you get is fluff Ambrose style books, or Beevor's recent work. The best general histories on Normandy are probably Keegan's and Hasting's works, but those are general histories. It's surprising that it takes a Swedish aviation historian to put out the best book on the Bulge in decades, though Caddick-Adams' Ardennes book that just came out is pretty good as well, though not as detailed or myth shattering as Bergstrom's.

                  Now this is about Western Europe, don't even get me started about the lack of detailed tactical and operational histories, other than unit histories and possibly a few battle histories, about North Africa and Italy!!!! Two theatres I'm greatly fascinated by, but am without any really great history!
                  I finished Tomb of the PzWaffe recently. The german performance was poor and the soviet was good.
                  Last edited by Cult Icon; 15 Oct 15, 02:09.

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                  • No, I don't have Zetterling's book, though it's on my list....Yes Hungary 1945 was very bad for the Germans. By that time the Soviets knew exactly how to fight and had perfected their doctrine...Drama Between Budapest and Vienna pretty much comes to the same conclusions even though it is written by a former Waffen SS Ia!!!

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                    • ^
                      I was wondering if Maier's book was that different. I had referenced 12.SS, 23.Pz, and 3.Pz while reading "Tomb..". What stands out is that they had one week to prepare for the german offensive and that much time was enough to shift so many AT units.

                      Zetterling's 1944 has 280 pages of unit stats (the meat of the book). There is editorializing by Lawrence and a 100 page section on normandy (German) campaign stats.

                      I am getting the Armored Campaign in the Normandy in the mail next week or so.

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                      • I bought a copy of "Caucasus and the Oil". It looks that this subject has literally only 3 major campaign sources from a purely military perspective. And Caucasus and the Oil is the only long, detailed account:

                        1. Glantz, Stalingrad Trilogy (100 pages dense series of troop movements)
                        2. Osprey booklet
                        3. Caucasus and the Oil

                        Then there's a soviet memoir.

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                        • "Caucasus and the Oil" is excellent from the German perspective, as all Tieke books tend to be. Also,,,,interesting news! Isaev, the author of "Tomb of the Panzerwaffe," has a new book coming out in English from Helion titled "Dubno 1941."

                          http://www.amazon.com/Dubno-1941-Gre...=p_30%3Ahelion

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                          • .......plus another interesting title "Red Wind Over the Balkans"....

                            http://www.amazon.com/Red-Wind-Over-...=p_30%3Ahelion

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                            • Interesting. According to the burb from "Tomb.." Isaev is a 1941 specialist who has recently moved to 44/45.

                              "Dubno 1941" is covered in "The blood triangle: the destruction of soviet armor in the ukraine".

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                              • ..also two more of those Red Army General Staff studies...

                                Kursk:

                                http://www.amazon.com/Battle-Kursk-O...=p_30%3Ahelion

                                Berlin:

                                http://www.amazon.com/Berlin-Operati...=p_30%3Ahelion

                                ...and a book on the German Eastern War from 1941-1943:

                                http://www.amazon.com/Enduring-Whirl...=p_30%3Ahelion

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