Waffen Ss Kursk (英語) ハードカバー – 2003/7
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Kursk was a crucial battle on the vast Eastern Front and a battle in which Hitler's elite, the Waffen SS, distinguished itself as never before. In this magnificent series of photo histories, Remy Spezzano presents rare and previously unpublished images detailing the uniforms, equipment and weapons of the Waffen SS divisions employed to stem the tide in 1943.
The Kriegsberichters or War Correspondents who took this remarkable series of photographs were masters of their art; fortunately, unlike a famous series taken later during the 1944 Battle of the Bulge, these seem not to have been tweaked or oughtright posed by them. Instead, they are more like snapshots taken as the drama unfolds before their - and our - eyes. The somewhat unwieldy caption system, where the details are lumped together in the back of the book, at least serve to flesh out what we are seeing, offering greater detail than the one-liners beneath the pictures. In later volumes, the captions tell the story of the battle as it develops.
This is less a book for modelers, since the view is more often of "the Big Picture" in vast landscapes than of specific details of the many different kinds of vehicles shown, than it is a kind of "Face of Battle" view. The correspondents - here Max Buschel, Johan King, and Hermann Groenert - have done an admirable job showing individual soldiers who make up the bulk of the Waffen-SS Divisionen. As a collector of WWII German weapons and field gear, I enjoy seeing these items as worn, carried, and in actual use. Volume 2 features two important subordinate commanders, SS-Sturmbannfuhrers Christian Tychsen and Vincenz Kaiser, as well as the expected lower level officers and enlisted men in various situations. Russian enemy prisoners are also well represented, and come off looking more like worthy - if defeated - opponents than the Untermensch or "sub-humans" of propaganda legend.