A worthy addition to the extremely popular Images of War series from Pen & Sword. The author has delivered a beautifully researched and illustrated book covering the unique US Atomic Cannon, the apex of US heavy artillery development. – Very Highly Recommended
NAME: Images of War, M65 Atomic Cannon, Rare Photographs From Wartime Archives FILE: R2892 AUTHOR: David Doyle PUBLISHER: Pen and Sword BINDING: soft back PAGES: 232. PRICE: £15.99 GENRE: Non Fiction SUBJECT: Cold War, Soviet threat, Red Army, US Army, NATO, European Theatre, heavy ordnance, 280mm cannon, transportable heavy cannon, nuclear shells, tactical missiles, ballistic missiles
IMAGE: B2892.jpg BUYNOW: tinyurl.com/y4yqmpsv LINKS: DESCRIPTION: A worthy addition to the extremely popular Images of War series from Pen & Sword. The author has delivered a beautifully researched and illustrated book covering the unique US Atomic Cannon, the apex of US heavy artillery development. – Very Highly Recommended The Allies faced a significant threat from the Soviets at the end of WWII. This developed into the Cold War, with some very hot surrogate wars. The US saw South Korea and Europe to be at direct risk from Communist aggression. The primary threat was from very large standing armies equipped with a huge superiority in tank numbers, poised on the borders and able to roll with little pre-warning. US and British intelligence considered this threat was inside the six week notice of hostilities, as a limited objective conventional war. It was anticipated that the Soviets and their associates could decide on a surprise invasion followed by a peace treaty that let them keep whatever territory they had occupied. It was also anticipated that the Soviet aggression could seize all of South Korea, and Europe to its North Sea and Atlantic Coasts. This was based on the subversion of newly liberated central European counties and the attempt to starve out West Berlin in 1948. Part of the US response to this threat was the development of the 'Atomic Cannon', a 280mm gun that could fire conventional shells and nuclear shells over a range of up to 20 miles. This weapon was to become the pinnacle of US heavy artillery, produced in very small numbers and stationed in Germany and South Korea. The role of this cannon was seen as a nuclear shell delivery system to fill the gap until adequate numbers of tactical missiles became available. Its secondary role was as a deterrent and propaganda tool, popular at public demonstrations during the early years of the Cold War. The challenge facing the designers was to produce the weapon in a form that it could be moved around. Historically, heavy long range guns had been designed as railway guns, either arriving on special carriages ready to load and fire, or as multiple loads to be assembled at a convenient firing position. The US Army decided on road transport, using a special push/pull/trailer assembly. Once delivered to the firing position, the gun was unloaded, standing on jacking plates. It rapidly became obsolescent and then was completely replaced by missiles which were easier to deploy and could carry more powerful tactical warheads. This is a story that has not been told well before, making this new book doubly welcome.