Osprey's elite title on Germany's U-Boat tactics during World War II (1939-1945). At the start of the war, German U-boat technology vastly out performed that possessed by the Allies, and under the pressure of the war continual development helped keep pace with wartime needs and improvements in anti-submarine weaponry. But it was not just the technology that had to change. German U-boat tactics evolved over time. Used in a variety of roles, from coastal patrolling through to the combined actions of convey-hunting 'wolf packs', the tactics used by U-Boats were diverse. This book analyses how the U-boats dominated the seas thanks to their innovative and daring tactical deployment, and how the cracking of the Enigma code effectively hamstrung them, greatly reducing their impact, a problem that even their advanced tactics failed to solve.
As was the case in World War II, one of the greatest threats to Britain during World War I was the German U-boat menace. This book traces the development of the U-boat threat from the Brandtaucher, designed by Wilhelm Bauer, the father of the German submarine arm, in 1850, through to the commissioning of Germany's first U-boat to go into service, the U-1, in 1906. It then covers the main types of World War I U-boat, detailing the operational history of the U-boat service in depth, with a particular focus on the campaigns in the Atlantic and Mediterranean, as well as the slow build up of anti-submarine measures by the allies.
Winston Churchill claimed that the "U-boat peril" was the only thing that ever frightened him during World War II. A formidable foe, the U-boat was developed from a small coastal vessel into a state-of-the-art killer, successfully stalking the high seas picking off merchant convoy ships. It was not until the destroyer escort was introduced, alongside the development of destroyer groups with dedicated anti-submarine tactics, that there was an effective means of defence and attack against the U-boat peril.Gordon Williamson describes the design and development of these two deadly opponents, their strengths and weaknesses and of their tactics, weaponry and training. He provides an insight into the lives of the Allied Navy and Wolf Pack crews as they played their deadly games of cat and mouse on the high seas, gambling not only with their lives but with the fate of their nations.
The military branch of the Nazi SS security organisation grew by the end of World War II (1939-1945) from a handful of poorly regarded infantry battalions in 1939, into a force of more than 30 divisions including units of every type. Their battlefield reputation varied widely, from the premier armoured divisions which formed Germany's utterly reliable spearheads on both main fronts, to low quality 'anti-partisan' units. The divisions covered in this second of four titles include the first mountain and cavalry units, and two of the remarkable new Panzer divisions raised in the great 1943 expansion. Illustrated with rare photographs from private collections, the text details their organisation, uniforms and insignia, and summarises their battle record.
Germany's World War II U-Boat fleet represented the elite of their naval personnel. In terms of technology, training, tactics and combat successes, the U-Boat Waffe was far superior to that of any other combatant nation. In this comprehensive book, the wartime development of the U-Boat is traced along with the experiences of typical U-Boat crewmen, from recruitment to combat. The author examines the operational tactics of the U-Boat fleet, as well as describing the massive bunkers that housed them. 'Wolf Pack' contains material taken from Fortress 3: 'U-Boat Bases and Bunkers 1941-45', Warrior 36: 'Grey Wolf: U-Boat Crewman of World War II' and New Vanguards 51 and 55: 'Kriegsmarine U-Boat 1939-45 (1) and (2)', with the addition of a new section on wartime tactics.From the Hardcover edition.
The remarkable war effort of the German armed forces on three fronts between 1939 and 1945 was recognised by a wider range of insignia than seen in the Allied armies. While the Wehrmacht displayed fewer unit insignia than the Allies, a glance at a German soldier's tunic could reveal much more about his actual combat experience. In this book an experienced researcher explains and illustrates the Battle and Assault Badges of the Army, Waffen-SS and Luftwaffe ground troops of World War II; the sleeve shields and cuffbands issued to mark service in particular campaigns; wound badges, commemorative medals, and other types of insignia.
The wartime Police were headed by Himmler as chief of the SS; and throughout the occupied nations the regional SS commanders were specifically termed 'Higher SS and Police Leaders'. Hitler's police was not a single service, but a vast machinery which included many special categories ranging from conventional criminal detectives, and municipal and rural police to combat battalions sent to Russia, and from border and customs police to special railway and waterway departments, fire brigades and emergency engineer squads, and even a colonial service for North Africa. The author explains the origins, the complex organization and the particular duties of the many different police branches that formed such a critical part of the Nazi apparatus and ensured that control was maintained inside Hitler's Fortress Europe. His painstaking research has unearthed fascinating new information about the German police services and their many different uniforms and insignia, which are recreated in the meticulously detailed color artwork.From the Trade Paperback edition.
Under the Nazi regime, Hitler's conservative views on the place of housewives and mothers in society limited German women to a much less active role in World War II (1939-1945) than their British and Allied counterparts. Nevertheless, the demands of a prolonged war did see German women in a range of uniforms as auxiliaries with the Army, Navy, Air Force and SS, particularly in the signals and air defence services. This unique book explains and illustrates these organisations and their uniforms and insignia, as well as Red Cross nurses, and auxiliaries of the Labour Corps, Customs Service, National Socialist Women's Organisation, and League of German Maidens (Hitler Youth).