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SOVIET TANK UNITS 1939-45 (The Essential Vehicle Identification Guide) Hardcover – April 10, 2009
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Top Customer Reviews
It probably is a nitpicky complaint given that the book is about Soviet tank units and not the tanks per se, but there is little data about the tanks themselves other than a short specifications box with each drawing. Also lacking is any real treatment of how the tanks performed in battle. As mentioned, the text is engaging but it treats the campaigns outlined at a very strategic level so the reader will have to go to other sources for a more detailed examination.
Those minor complaints aside, this book is well worth the very reasonable price.
The illustrations include light, medium and heavy duty tanks, antitank and the variations that developed throughout the war. It also covered armor cars, trucks, rocket launchers, ambulances, staff cars, jeeps and cycles. Lend lease tanks and trucks as well as tractors and towing vehicles round out the list.
To my surprise, Mr Porter also includes a brief history of Russian armor which started around the time of the revolution and continues its coverage to the start of the war. The summary includes Marshall Tukhachevsky and his driving force in improving war doctrine and Red Army modernization in the early and mid 1930s. Stalin's purges were also covered.
The author also provides a brief but helpful summary of key tank battles during the war. It includes the engagements at Dubissa River, Bialystok, Minsk, Kiev, Moscow, Rzhev, Vyazma, Kharkov, Stalingrad, the Caucasus, Uranus, Bagration, Lvov, Berlin and even Manchuria. Before Barbarossa, the Spanish Civil War, and the invasions of Poland and Finland are mentioned.
The Appendix includes tables of Lend-lease production and delivery quantities. It shows losses of T34s by year as well as Soviet tank production figures by year. A table also shows a comparison of German and Soviet tank strengths for various campaigns. In addition to the illustrations and tables, a good number of battlefield photos are presented.
This is a competent primer that for many would probably be an excellent starting place to learn before moving up to the giant 500 plus page encyclopedias.
There are many photos as well, and a concise unit or type history. Highly recommended for the model or war-game enthusist.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Rare and excellent summary of the organization and equipment of the Russian armored corp during WWII.Published 10 months ago by Steven L McNeil
Gee, for a book about Soviet Tanks in the second World War I can't believe that they didn't include the information about the Armor thickness for each AFV. Read morePublished on November 16, 2013 by Dwin M. Craig
This book has terrific illustrations of Soviet armored vehicles and it also covers a brief but informative history of the Eastern Front. Read morePublished on July 11, 2013 by Josh Baldwin
The russian tank units did not fare well against the german panzers, early in the eastern front war. Read morePublished on April 26, 2013 by Amazon Customer
David Porter's SOVIET TANK UNITS 1939-45, published by Amber Books in 2009, is an excellent guide to the development and combat history of the Soviet tank force. Read morePublished on December 28, 2011 by Mike O'Connor
Very nicely done, great format. I do not have a large collection of soviet armor reference material so this was a welcome addition. Written well and to the point, no fluff. Read morePublished on March 9, 2011 by Frank Studenski