Being there . . . . on the Eastern Front during night of June 19/20, 1941, to witness Hitler
unleash “Operation Barbarossa” (‘Redbeard’), a massive tornado of tanks and troops in three
army groups against “Uncle Joe” Stalin and his Soviet government. The Fuhrer’s Army Group
North would seize the Baltic; Army Group South would grab the agricultural, coal-rich, oil-rich
lands of the Ukraine and Caucasus; and Army Group Center would open the highways and
roads to the Moscow Kremlin. Watch to see if all Russia west of the line from Archangel to
Astrakhann will be conquered and confiscated into the Third Reich. Note the introduction of an
avalanche of new warfare terms, weapons, battle concepts, military strategies, and Allied and
enemy leaders you’ll be introduced to. August 31, 1939, abruptly forced onto the
consciousness of peaceful humanity a horrific thought: world conquest by madmen and warfare
by blatant murder – – or B L I T Z G R I E G, “lightning war”. You’ll see for yourself what it all
meant the moment the Fuhrer signaled the three Army Group juggernauts to roll East. Little did
realize that action was the moment he began to lose World War II in Europe . . . .
ON JUNE 20, 1941, AN IMPATIENT HITLER LAUNCHED HIS ARMIES OF TROOPS, PLANES, AND
TANKS IN NUMEROUS FRONTAL ASSAULTS ON THE U.S.S.R. DID HE SOW GERMANY’S SEEDS
FOR FAILURE ON THE BOUNDLESS PLAINS OF RUSSIA? WOULD HIS NEW TANKS BE HELPFUL?
Reviewed and Highly Recommended by Don DeNevi
“THE 12 th SS PANZER DIVISION HITLERJUGEND – – From Operation Goodwood to April 1945”, by
Massimiliano Afiero. CASEMATE PUBLISHING LTD, Casemate Illustrated: 2023, 128 pages,
softcover, 7” x 10”; $28.95. Visit, www.casematepublishers.com.
“THE SOVIET DESTRUCTION OF ARMY GROUP SOUTH – – Ukraine and Southern Poland 1943 –
1945”, by Ian Baxter. CASEMATE PUBLISHING LTD, Casemate Illustrated: 128 pages, softcover,
7” x 10”; $28.95. Visit, www.casematepublishers.com.
“ELEPHANT PATHS – – Combat History of Sturmgeschutz – Abteilung 203”, by Thomas Anderson.
PeKo Publishing Kft. (Hungary), dist. By CASEMATE PUBLISHING LTD: 2022, 190 pages,
hardcover, 8 ½” x 12”; $35. Visit, www.pekobooks.com, and www.casematepublishers.com.
To visualize “Barbarossa”, a Hitler-conceived operation that the world would hold its breath
while awaiting the outcome, consider the Fuhrer meant it as the greatest military machine
invasion ever conceived. To the north and south, more than 3 million German and German-
allied troops would be poised to attack. Leading them through the Soviet lines and defenses
would be 3350 new tanks and 600,000 other combat-oriented vehicles. All were hidden along a
1250-mile frontier in forests, pastures, and cornfields isolated by enforced radio silences. Of
course, Stalin learned all about the pending invasion from his spies in Berlin and Tokyo but
insisted all were staged lies to trigger him to attack first.
Three years to the he launched “Barbarossa”, almost 1.3 million Soviet troops in 166
divisions with over 4000 T-34 exceptionally tough tanks and self-propelled guns supported by
6000 Red Air Force planes, the cream of Stalin’s fighting veteran elites, began their own
immense offenses. Hitler and his generals knew something was up, but not to THAT colossal
extent. “Russian ‘blitzkriegs’? Impossible!” Hitler almost suffered a nervous breakdown. Beyond
their wildest imaginations, the Germans couldn’t believe it. In short, they would never recover.
The Russians called the counterattack, “Bagration”, after a Russian general who had fought
valiantly in the War of 1812 against Napoleon. The proud Red Army, off to a slow start in 1941-
1942, yet victorious in the most brutal fight the world had known up to that time, THE BATTLE
FOR STALINGRAD, was anxious for retribution and revenge. To them, each individual German
would pay dearly for their murders, rapes, lootings of the previous years in Russia.
CASEMATE’S various series, especially the Illustrated Series featured here, are all relishing,
pressuring you to purchase for your own growing libraries. Each “Illustrated” in its own series
explores key elements of military history via large-matted photos for visual detail, maps and
color profiles of tanks, aircraft, and other vehicles. Profiles of key individuals and units, a
timeline, and explanatory text boxes support each book’s narrative, which provides a clear
overview of the battle or campaign and the experiences of the forces involved. Other
CASEMATE Illustrated titles now available include, among dozens of others, “THE SOVIET
BALTIC OFFENSIVE, 1944-45”, “FROM MOSCOW TO STALINGRAD”, “OPERATION TYPHOON”,
“THE 3 RD SS PANZER REGIMENT”, “DAY FIGHTER ACES OF THE LUFTWAFFE 1939 – 1942”, etc.
In addition, all my readers should reach out to the PeKo Publishing Kft website,
www.pekobooks.com, or email, [email protected], to learn what’s available from this
CASEMATE PUBLISHERS imprint – if “Elephant Paths” is an example of what that Hungarian
publisher has to offer, beware that your grocery budget for the next year or so will be loaned to
your annual book budget because you’ll want to own all listed. Would you rather gaze on
candid enemy photos, then read about them, or eat? End of questions.