Demyansk 1942–43

Demyansk 1942–43

The frozen fortress

Campaign 245
  • Author: Robert Forczyk
  • Illustrator: Peter Dennis
  • Short code: CAM 245
  • Publication Date: 20 Jun 2012
  • Number of Pages: 96
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About this Product

The fighting around the town of Demyansk was one of the longest encirclement battles on the Eastern Front during World War II, stretching from February 1942 to February 1943. Originally, the German 16. Armee occupied Demyansk in the autumn of 1941 because it was key terrain that would be used as a springboard for an eventual offensive into the Valdai Hills. Instead, the Soviet winter counteroffensive in February 1942 encircled the German II Armeekorps and other units, inside the Demyansk Pocket. Yet despite severe pounding from five Soviet armies, the embattled German troops held the pocket and the Luftwaffe organized a major aerial resupply effort to sustain the defenders. For the first time in military history, an army was supplied entirely by air. In February 1943, Marshal Timoshenko was ordered to launch an offensive to cut off the base of the salient and annihilate the 12 divisions. At the same time, Hitler finally came to his senses after the Stalingrad debacle and authorized the 16. Armee to withdraw from the pocket. This volume will conclude with the drama of a German Army-sized withdrawal under fire in winter, under attack from three sides.

Biographical Note

Robert Forczyk has a PhD in International Relations and National Security from the University of Maryland and a strong background in European and Asian military history. He retired as a lieutenant colonel from the US Army Reserves having served 18 years as an armor officer in the US 2nd and 4th infantry divisions and as an intelligence officer in the 29th Infantry Division (Light). Dr Forczyk is currently a consultant in the Washington, DC area.Peter Dennis was born in 1950. Inspired by contemporary magazines such as Look and Learn he studied illustration at Liverpool Art College. Peter has since contributed to hundreds of books, predominantly on historical subjects, including many Osprey titles. A keen wargamer and modelmaker, he is based in Nottinghamshire, UK.

Contents

Introduction
Chronology
Opposing commanders
Opposing forces
Opposing plans
The Demyansk campaign
Aftermath
The battlefield today
Further reading
Index

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