The author has established an impressive portfolio of aviation histories and established a loyal following of readers. This new book is a worthy addition to the portfolio and covers the story of the use of airborne troops in very large numbers during the closing stages of war in Europe – most highly recommended.
NAME: Air War Varsity FILE: R2639 AUTHOR: Martin W Bowman PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword BINDING: hard back PAGES: 256 PRICE: £25.00 GENRE: Non Fiction SUBJECT: WWII, World War 2, World War II, Second World War, airborne troops, transport aircraft, drop zone, DZ, C-46, C-47, C-54, paratroops, light infantry, Rhine Crossing, closing stages of WWII, air support ISBN: 1-47386-310-4 IMAGE: B2639.jpg BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.com/ya9cr6u9 LINKS: DESCRIPTION: The author has established an impressive portfolio of aviation histories and established a loyal following of readers. This new book is a worthy addition to the portfolio and covers the story of the use of airborne troops in very large numbers during the closing stages of war in Europe – most highly recommended. There has always been some animated debate as to which country invented airborne forces. Certainly, the Soviets were early pioneers, although many of their airborne troops were required to slide off the wings of their transport aircraft without the benefit of a parachute. The Germans were also early pioneers but they took a different line, equipping all paratroops with parachutes and developing glider transports that could serve as assault gliders to deliver groups of soldiers directly into a target area, equipping gliders with machine guns and constructing larger machines that could carry heavy equipment including artillery and half-tracks. As the war progressed, the Germans then started adding engines to their gliders to allow reuse of the airframes and take some of the burden off the hard pressed metal transport planes, Ju-52 tri-motors and converted bombers. However, the Soviets made little use of paratroops and the Germans suffered such high casualties in the battle for Crete that their paratroops were thereafter used as elite ground troops. It was the Allies, Americans and British, who developed airborne forces into large formations that were deployed to support land forces in major assaults from the air. Operation Varsity-Plunder was to see the combined use of large airborne forces combined with amphibious forces to undertake a major frontal assault on the German ground troops fighting for their home soil. This was an ambitious airborne attack that was not without its challenges, one being to maintain the flow of supplies after the initial drop. The failure at Arnheim, during Operation Market Garden, had taught some costly but valuable lessons that contributed to the successful bridging of the last barrier before the German heart lands. The author has as usual written well from careful research and provided a detailed account of Varsity. There are two first rate photo plate sections to support the very descriptive text, including many rare images