Being there . . . . actually, having BEEN there this past week amid the 153 divisions of Operation
Barbarossa, the German codename for the invasion of the USSR which took place on 22 June
1941, serious World War II Eastern Front buffs, as well as curious and general readers, are now
provided actual, and accurate, operational studies of really went on during the invasion’s
critical initial stages. Thanks again to Schiffer Military History Publishers, which earlier gave us
the referred to 775 page “OPERATION BARBAROSSA”, we have two volumes that reveal how
Hitler began planning the invasion in the summer of 1940, then briefed six months later on 5
December as to its virtual success. But little is known how at that early-stage serious questions
arose resulting in unbridgeable differences. By far the most important was deciding whether
the main thrust of field operations was to be directed at the Kremlin in Moscow or the two
flanks in the north and south from the center upon piercing the enemy line. Hitler’s OKH, the
Army High Command, favored heading straight to the streets of Moscow. Only one thing matter
to the Fuhrer, “Crush Stalin and his military campaign in a swift campaign. But first, destroy the
massive Soviet troops located in the central west of the USSR”, in essence protecting Stalin. The
OKH felt that would be easy enough with the greatest invasion force ever assembled in world
history. But Germany, of course, would be weakened after such colossal fighting. No matter
figured, Hitler, “Our troops can rest after reaching the ‘Line Volga (Astrakhan) – Archangel’.”
The question of, “What next?”, if the German Wehrmacht failed in destroying the Red Armies
west of the Dvina and Dnieper remained unanswered. Neither the OKH nor Hitler realize that
within a short time 3.6 million German and other Axis soldiers, 3,600 tanks, and over 2,700
aircraft would be killed and destroyed . . . so much for Nazi genius military planning.
BRILLIANT REPRINTED MILITARY TRILOGY SPANNING THE HORRIBLE WAR AGAINST THE SOVIET
UNION IN THE YEARS 1941 – 1945 AGAIN BRING TO LIFE THE COMBAT OPERATIONS, BATTLES,
VICTORIES, AND DEFEATS OF ARMY GROUPS SOUTH, CENTRAL, AND NORTH. THE STUNNING
SERIES REMAINS THE MOST DEFINED AND ACCURATE YET PUBLISHED. WHEN HITLER STRUCK
EAST, THE WORLD HELD ITS BREATH. WHEN RUSSIA REFUSED TO DIE, HER TENACITY WON HALF
OF WORLD WAR II IN EUROPE
Reviewed and Highly Recommended by Don DeNevi
“ARMY GROUP SOUTH – – The Wehrmacht in Russia, 1941 – 1945”, by Werner Haupt. A
SCHIFFER MILITARY HISTORY BOOK, Atglen, PA 19310: 407 pages, 6 ½” x 9 ¼”, hardcover, 1998;
$39.95. Visit, www.schifferbooks.com.
“ARMY GROUP CENTER – – The Wehrmacht in Russia, 1941 – 1945”, by Werner Haupt. A
SCHIFFER MILITARY HISTORY BOOK, Atglen, PA 19310: 414 pages, 6 ½” x 9 ¼”, hardcover, 1997;
$35.00. Visit, www.schifferbooks.com.
“ARMY GROUP NORTH – – The Wehrmacht in Russia, 1941 – – 1945”, by Werner Haupt. A
Schiffer Military History Book, Atglen, PA 19310: 416 pages, 6 ½” x 9 ¼”, hardcover, 1996; $35.
After long years of studying sources and literature, Werner Haupt presented the military
history of one of the larger theaters of World War II. The completion of this trilogy is the result
of the author’s utilization of all available German and Russian literature, as well as those
combat diaries and documents of the committed troop units that available in German archives.
In addition, the author was assisted in clearing up several questions by the advice of former
members of the army group, from commanders to drivers. This indispensable three-book series
by Werner Haupt continues with his memorable “Assault on Moscow 1941 – – The Offensive,
The Battle, and The Set Back,” a work that provides detailed unit operations and individual
accounts. Haupt served in the German army as a soldier and officer in the northern sector of
the Eastern Front.