Military Historian and Author STEPHEN BULL
Publications 2
Most wars have had some element of espionage and subterfuge, but few have included as much as the Second World War, where the all-embracing nature of the conflict, new technology, and the battle of ideologies conspired to make almost everywhere a war zone. The occupation of much of Europe in particular left huge areas that could be exploited. Partisans, spies and saboteurs risked everything in a limbo where the normal rules of war were usually suspended. Concealment of oneself, one's weapons and equipment, was vital, and so were the new methods and hardware which were constantly evolving in a bid to stay ahead of the Gestapo and security services. Silent killing, disguise, covert communications and the arts of guerrilla warfare were all advanced as the war progressed. With the embodiment and expansion of organisations such as the British SOE and the American OSS, and the supply of special forces units which operated behind enemy lines, clandestine warfare became a permanent part of the modern military and political scene. Perhaps surprisingly many of these hitherto secret techniques and pieces of equipment were put into print at the time and many examples are now becoming available. This manual brings together a selection of these dark arts and extraordinary objects and techniques in their original form, under one cover to build up an authentic picture of the Allied spy.
Many people have the idea that the 'Great War' on the Western Front was simple, if ghastly, to fight -- with few tactics, and unbroken, monotonous, trench lines as the main feature of the battlefield. In such a scenario soldiers with rifles and bayonets charging each other in blind obedience to stupid repetitious orders are imagined as archetypal of battle. Though undeniably bloody the war was in fact a ferment of new ideas and new weapons. Gas, flame throwers, super-heavy artillery, concrete bunkers, tanks, aircraft and other innovations were all introduced, whilst older notions such as barbed wire, machine guns and armour took on a new lease of life.
Despite all technological advances, final mastery of any battlefield depends upon the tight-knit group of footsoldiers trained to manoeuvre, shoot and dig in. This first of a two- part study examines the methods by which the Western infantry of World War II - the German, British and US armies - actually brought their firepower to bear. Drawing upon period training manuals for the evolving theory, and on personal memoirs for the individual practice, this first book covers the organization and tactics of the squad of ten or a dozen men, and the platoon of three or four squads. The text is illustrated with contemporary photographs and diagrams, and with colour plates bringing to life the movement of soldiers on the battlefield.
The years from 1914 to 1918 saw a whole series of complex and very rapid changes in infantry tactics, which fundamentally altered the way wars had been fought for 150 years. This two-part study describes and illustrates the development: of infantry equipment and weapons; of support weapons; of field fortifications; and, most importantly, exactly how these items and techniques were all employed in attack and defence. The texts are illustrated with contemporary photos and diagrams and with colour plates combining details of uniforms, equipment and weapons with bird's-eye views explaining their use in battle. This second volume concentrates on the men who fought in such important battles as those of Ypres and the Somme.
Osprey's study of street-fighting tactics during World War II (1939-1945). In a continuation of the tactics mini-series, this new book describes and analyzes the physical tactics of the close-quarter fighting that took place in the ruined cities on both the Western and Eastern Fronts of World War II. Street-to-street fighting in cities was not a new development, but the bombed-out shells of cities and advances in weaponry meant that World War II took it to a new level of savagery and violence. New tactics developed around the defenses that ruined cities offered. This book examines these tactics, describing how a small group of infantry could now destroy whole tank units for very little cost before melting away into the cities' rubble. It also analyzes the need for infantry units to clear ruins of the enemy, and looks at how this was done, and the cost of the slow house-to-house fighting that was seen across the war, from Stalingrad to Berlin. Packed with eye-witness accounts, tutorials from original training manuals, maps, and full color artwork which illustrates these tactics, this is an eye- opening insight into the tactics and experiences of infantry fighting their way through ruined cities in the face of heavy casualty rates and vicious resistance.
Suffocating heat, tropical rain and hostile jungle terrain were but a few of the treacherous obstacles that confronted the Allies when they fought against the Imperial Japanese Army in the Southeast Asian rainforest. Aided by the knowledge of the terrain, the Japanese were consistently successful in their advances during the winter of 1941-42. However, once the Allies realised that unconventional means and specific jungle skills would be needed in order to survive and win, they developed effective units able to fight the Japanese in this hostile environment. Providing an expert analysis of tactical warfare, this book explains the early successes of the Japanese and highlights how the Allies overcame many physical and psychological impairments, to master the art of jungle warfare and finally conquer the strange and claustrophobic jungle environment.
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