From Barbarossa to Odessa: The Luftwaffe and Axis Allies Strike South-East June - October 1941-Volume 2

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9781857802801: From Barbarossa to Odessa: The Luftwaffe and Axis Allies Strike South-East June - October 1941-Volume 2

From Barbarossa to Odessa: Volume 2 is the second of two volumes on the air combat which took place on the southern flank of the Eastern Front following Operation Barbarossa. The period covered in this book saw the occupation of Bessarabia and southwest Ukraine and concluded when the Germans captured the area's regional capital, Odessa, on October 16, 1941. It was one of the most bitter and intensive air campaigns fought in the east, because local Soviet commanders had dispersed most of their assets in time, thus preventing their destruction on the ground. This gave them the ability to respond effectively to the combined Axis onslaught. Accordingly, the Red Air Force was able to achieve some of its greatest successes of 1941 in this little-studied campaign.
This book covers the often overlooked involvement of aircraft from Axis states other than Germany, such as the Romanians, who claimed a total of over 600 air victories, the Hungarians, the Slovaks, and even the Bulgarians. This makes the subject varied and of great interest, particularly because of the large variety of aircraft types employed by both sides, all of which are fully documented. Aided by a large number of previously unpublished photographs, the book tells the story of the campaign from both sides and provides detailed eyewitness accounts from individual pilots who were involved in the fighting. Besides day-to-day operations, appendices will contain comprehensive victory and loss lists.

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About the Author:

Dénes Bernád is an aviation historian specializing in Central and East European countries. He has published numerous books and articles in the aviation press. He currently resides in Hungary.

Jean-Louis Roba is an accredited aviation historian with several books and articles published. He currently lives in Belgium.

Dmitriy Karlenko is also an accredited aviation historian with a number of published books and articles. He currently lives in the Ukraine.

Review:

Written by acknowledged experts on this important, but often overlooked theatre of operations, the two volumes of From Barbarossa to Odessa: The Luftwaffe Strikes South East, represent a major contribution to the available literature on the subject. The books will be essential reading for historians of the air war in the east and of the Luftwaffe and its allied air forces and aviation modellers. New, and often unexpected and controversial information continues to emerge on the massive air campaign fought over the Russian Front during World War 2. This book is the second of two volumes, the result of lengthy and meticulous study, on the air combat that took place on the southern flank of the Eastern Front following Operation Barbarossa. The period covered in these volumes saw the occupation of Bessarabia and southwest Ukraine and concluded when the areas regional capital, Odessa, was captured by the Germans on 16 October 1941. This was one of the most bitter and intensive air campaigns fought in the east due to the fact that local Soviet commanders dispersed most of their air assets in time, preventing their destruction on the ground. Thus, in this little-studied campaign, the Soviet Air Force was able to respond effectively to the Axis onslaught and achieved some of its greatest successes of 1941. The often overlooked involvement of aircraft from Axis states other than Germany, such as the Romanians who claimed a total of over 600 air victories, the Hungarians, the Slovaks and even the Bulgarians, is covered in the book. Their involvement makes this campaign of great interest because of the large variety of aircraft types employed by both sides. Aided by a large number of previously unpublished photographs, the book tells the story of the campaign from both sides and provides detailed eyewitness accounts from individual pilots who were involved in the fighting. Besides day-to-day operations, appendices contain comprehensive victory and loss lists. --Olga Federkevich

The book covers the campaign for Bessarabia in June and July 1941 and is an important addition to C. Bergström's books about the air war on the Eastern Front in that it covers the operations of some of the lesser known allies to the Germans in the form of the Rumanian, Hungarian and Slovak Air Forces in addition to the Luftwaffe and VVS. The campaign along the Black Sea coast wasn't the "walk in the park" as the initial months of Barbarossa often is pictured as. The VVS had been forewarned of the invasion and had managed to disperse their aircraft and thus wasn't as surprised as on other fronts. This also meant that they were able to strike back and offer a stronger resistance to the Axis' very mixed types of aircraft. Both Rumania and Hungary operated a "rich" variety of aircraft types and which must have been the quartermasters' nightmare. Rumania for instance used British, German, Polish and indigenous fighters in combat against the VVS! They also used French, German, Polish, British, Italian and indigenous bombers! The book is in a day-to-day account, which gives it a lasting value as a reference book to go back to in the future. The book is highly recommended and for anyone interested in either or both the air war on the Eastern Front and the minor air forces during the Second World War, it is a must! I have only one objection to the book and it is that it doesn't have any index, which is a pity since it has a rich wealth of names, which without an index is very difficult to search for. I hope that this will be added in Volume 2, which I eagerly await! --By Gustavsson Hãkan

Being used to Osprey Military style publishings, technical literature and publications presenting a military or political standpoint, i was pleasantly surprised by the in depth level of a publication which tracks down every single aircraft operation. One could use this book as reference on statistical or other military publications on "Barbarossa" or components as subject. Being a layman on the subject of aviation in general, and ww2 aviation in particular, this book restarted my interest in aviation, which was awaken briefly by Constable&Toliver's "Horrido" a few years ago and maybe will push me towards aircraft modelling, something which i stood away from so far. Some parts were, for me, sometimes cumbersome to read, as i was not familiar with many of the abbreviations, so it took me a bit to adjust, as this is not the style of book one would sit down and read for entrtainment on a rainy afternoon. I also realized that a set of good maps of the region, especially Bessarabia, are a must. However, Encarta Worldatlas did do a good job in providing me with a measuremen tool for aircraft ranges. To sum it up, I want to congratulate Denes, Dimitry Karlenko and Jean-Louis Roba for the outstanding research work made available to us readers, for an often overlooked part of the war. It is a must-to-have work for any ww2 aviation enthusiast with an interest in the eastern front and especially for an ARR fan. Keep 'em comming gents! --By dead-cat

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