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The History of the Groundbreaking Soviet Airborne Forces - New From Helion

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Personal logo Bobgnar Supporting Member of TMP writes:

d88mm1940, thanks for that link. Very informative. I did not know of the massive development of airborne forces in the Soviet Union. Love those open air bombers. The raid on Bessarabia would make an interesting game.

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World War Two on the Land
World War Two in the Air

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HillervonGaertringen Sponsoring Member of TMP of Helion and Co Ltd writes:

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Red Assault: Soviet Airborne Forces, 1930-1941

Red Assault

In the 1930s, Red Army Command maintained what was often an offensive doctrine. The plan was to fight a bloodless victory on foreign ground. An offensive by the Worker's and Peasant's Red Army was to unfold as per the classic Blitzkrieg – it was with good reason that some of the higher-ranking commanders had studied at the German General Headquarters Academy. Furthermore, all the technical achievements of the period were taken into account. The assault would begin with air strikes from strategic aviation – armadas of huge bombers would attack key targets deep inside enemy territory. At the same time, enormous numbers of airborne troops would be dropped behind enemy lines, armed with a range of equipment. These airborne troops would capture bridges and roads, and take communications and transport links out of action. Heralded by a powerful artillery attack, supported by tactical aviation, the tanks, armored vehicles, and trucks carrying motorized infantry would advance.

There was a basis for such optimistic forecasts. Since the Soviets were in possession of such a quantitative and qualitative advantage (and this was certainly the case), they were definitely able to advance. In the U.S.S.R., aviation was undergoing development ahead of schedule, as were armored tank technology, airborne assault troops, and chemical weapons. If the Soviets had tanks, aircraft and chemical weapons, albeit in small quantities, any potential enemies would possess them too. The airborne assault troops, however, were a distinctly Soviet innovation. In this respect, it was the Soviets that held an unquestionable advantage. It was here that the first groups of airborne paratroopers were dropped, and the first tanks and guns were dropped from the skies. The Red Army was conducting mass airborne-assault operations during the course of exercises when no other nation on Earth had airborne assault troops.

In other fields, Soviet military, science and technology in many cases copied existing Western achievements. Licenses were obtained, or examples of foreign materiel were simply copied. As far as the airborne troops were concerned, the Soviet military and the designers were in uncharted territory, having come up with a number of innovative solutions, which were later adopted by the armed forces of other nations.

In this book, the armament, equipment and military hardware developed for airborne troops is described, both in terms of the actual technology, and the clearly fantastical, which only reflected the unrestrained imagination of the designers. A significant amount of attention is devoted to the aircraft from which it was planned airborne troops would be dropped. The exercises that saw airborne troop drops are described, as well as the role airborne troops played in actual operations in the period up to 1941.

This book has been written on the basis of a number of documents that the author has discovered in the archives and in museum collections. This work draws upon the memoirs of the pioneer military paratroopers in the U.S.S.R., some of which have never been published before.

248mm x 180mm
344 pages
400 black-and-white photos & illustrations

Available Now From Helion & on Amazon!

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Text edited by Personal logo Editor Dianna The Editor of TMP
Graphics edited by Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian
Scheduled by Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian