Of the many books published on the sieges of Leningrad and Stalingrad very little coverage has been provided of the artillery, historians concentrating on the infantry and snipers. The author has not only corrected this commission, but covered the Spanish artillery deployed to the siege. – Very Highly Recommended
NAME: Ending The Siege Of Leningrad, German And Spanish Artillery At The Battle Of Krasny Bor FILE: R3259 AUTHOR: Carlos Caballero Jurado PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword BINDING: hard back PRICE: £25.00 GENRE: Non Fiction SUBJECT: WWII, World War II, World War 2, Second World War, Germany Army, Spanish Expeditionary Force, artillery, Red Army, siege warfare, attrition ISBN: 1-52674-102-4 PAGES: 213 IMAGE: B3258.jpg BUYNOW: tinyurl.com/yysmv4ke LINKS: DESCRIPTION: Of the many books published on the sieges of Leningrad and Stalingrad, very little coverage has been provided on the artillery, historians concentrating on the infantry and snipers. The author has no only corrected this commission, but also covered the Spanish artillery deployed to the siege. – Very Highly Recommended
The basic flaw in Hitler’s plans and ambitions was the criticality of time. He had thought of waging war at some point after 1946. Many of his weapons development teams were working to provide leading edge weapons to replace the initial training and small war equipment issued by 1939. Hitler assumed that he could continue making territorial demands and annexing neighbouring countries without having to fight a major war. Then, when the potential enemies had all been weakened he could strike at France, Britain and the Soviet Union in turn, before attempting to take North America. When France and Britain decided to honour their commitment to Poland it was a shock to him. He simply was not ready.
The initial ease and speed of his panzer armies rapidly defeated the neutral Low Countries and France. He thought he could then roll into the British Isles, secure what would become his rear, and roll East into the Soviet Union. Historians have spent many words explaining why this would never succeed, but Hitler had little choice. Britain had fought him off in the air and was already beginning commando raids on Occupied Europe. He saw this as encouraging the Soviets to attack him and decided to abandon the idea of invading Britain while he turned his Panzers around and sent them into the Soviet Union.
Initially the invasion looked much like the rapid invasion and defeat of the Western Allies. The Panzers advanced very quickly, destroyed large quantities of Soviet equipment and took many prisoners. As they raced towards key cities including Leningrad and Stalingrad, it seemed that the Fuhrer’s Luck had held and the war would be won before the bitter Russian winter arrived.
Leningrad and Stalingrad held special importance for the Soviets. Neither Stalin nor Hitler could afford to lose. The result was a brutal conflict where infantry attempted to win the street fighting and snipers took a terrible toll on both sides. Caught up in this battle to the death were the Spanish ‘volunteers’, present in the numbers to make their contrition potentially significant.
Although large numbers of soldiers were poured in by both sides and armour used to force bastions, the critical force was artillery. The siege of Leningrad became a terrible war of attrition on a Medieval pattern. The Soviets had always considered artillery king of the battlefield and the Germans augmented their field artillery with siege cannon. These heavy guns pounded much of Leningrad to rubble and the Soviets did their best to maintain searching counter battery fire.
The author has provided a fascinating account and made considerable use of images through the book to support his clear text, with drawings and tables expanding the supportive illustration.