In 1941–44, Nazi Germany's Gebirgsjäger--elite mountain troops--clashed repeatedly with land-based units of the Soviet Navy during the mighty struggle on World War II's Eastern Front. Formed into naval infantry and naval rifle brigades, some 350,000 of Stalin's sailors would serve the Motherland on land, playing a key role in the defense of Moscow, Leningrad, and Sevastopol. The Gebirgsjäger, many among them veterans of victories in Norway and then Crete, would find their specialist skills to be at a premium in the harsh terrain and bitter weather encountered at the northern end of the front line. Operating many hundreds of miles north of Moscow, the two sides endured savage conditions as they fought one another inside the Arctic Circle.
Featuring archive photographs, specially commissioned artwork, and expert analysis, this is the absorbing story of the men who fought and died in the struggle for the Soviet Union's northern flank at the height of World War II.