Thursday, November 28, 2019

USS Rodgers (DD-254)/ HMS Sherwood

USS Rodgers (DD-254)/ HMS Sherwood was a Clemson class destroyer that was transferred to the Royal Navy as part of the destroyers for bases deal. In British service she took part in the search for the survivors from the AMC Jervis Bay and the hunt for the Bismarck, but was mainly used on convoy escort duties.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

HMS Ure (1904)

HMS Ure (1904) was a River class destroyer that served with the Grand Fleet in 1914, with the Sixth Destroyer Flotilla at Dover in 1915-16 when she helped sink U-8, the Portsmouth Escort Flotilla then the Seventh Flotilla on the Humber in 1917 and the First Destroyer Flotilla at Portsmouth in 1918.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Curtiss O-52 Owl

The Curtiss O-52 Owl was a large, advanced two-man observation aircraft that had been made obsolete by the nature of the fighting in the Low Countries and France in 1940, and mainly saw use as a trainer.

Monday, November 25, 2019

USS McCalla (DD-253)/ HMS Stanley

USS McCalla (DD-253)/ HMS Stanley was a Clemson class destroyer that went to Britain in 1940 and served on escort duties in the Atlantic during 1941 before being sunk by U-574 on 19 December 1941.

Friday, November 22, 2019

HMS Swale (1905)

HMS Swale (1905) was a River class destroyer that served with the Grand Fleet in 1914, at Portsmouth in 1915-1917, escorting troop ships across the Channel, the Seventh Destroyer Flotilla on the Humber in 1917-1918 before moving back to Portsmouth for most of 1918.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

USS McCook (DD-252)/ HMCS St. Croix

USS McCook (DD-252)/ HMCS St. Croix was a Clemson class destroyer that served with the Royal Canadian Navy in the Atlantic and sank U-90 and helped sink U-89 before being sunk herself by U-305.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

HMS Dee (1903)

HMS Dee (1903) was a River class destroyer that served with the Grand Fleet in 1914, the North Channel Patrol in 1915, at Liverpool in 1915-17, and with the Seventh Destroyer Flotilla on the Humber in 1917-18, escorting convoys in the North Sea.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Bellanca O-50

The Bellanca O-50 was an observation aircraft developed alongside the Stinson O-49/ L-1 Vigilant, but that only ever reached the prototype stage.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Ancient Warfare Vol XII, Issue 1: Army for an Empire - Augustus’s new model military

Focuses on the army used by Augustus during his rise to power and the reforms he put in place after the end of the civil war. Takes an unusual approach, built around a single long article on the main theme supported by small inserts to produce a useful study of the first Roman Imperial army. Supported by a series of articles on other Greek and Roman topics
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Medieval Warfare Vol VIII, Issue 2: The English Invasion of Wales - The fall of Llywelyn ap Gruffudd

Focuses on Edward I’s conquest of Wales and the fall of Llywelyn the Last, the last generally recognised independent native prince of Wales, with articles on the career of Edward I, Llywelyn’s slippery brother David, the war itself and Edward’s famous castles. Elsewhere ranges from Anglo-Saxon riddles to Korean peasant resistance to the Japanese during the Imjin War!
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Ancient Warfare Vol XI, Issue 3 Roman against Roman, Caesar and Pompey in the Balkans

Focuses on the key campaign in the fall of the Roman Republic, where an outnumbered Caesar came back from an early defeat to overcome Pompey and the main defenders of the Republic, removing the main opposition to his personal rule. Also looks at the sources for Legionary cavalry, the difficult art of the ambush and the presence of the cataphract in north-western Europe
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Thursday, November 14, 2019

USS Belknap (DD-251/ AVD-8/ APD-34)

USS Belknap (DD-251/ AVD-8/ APD-34) was a Clemson class destroyer that serving as a seaplane tender in 1940-42, with hunter-killer anti-submarine groups in 1942-43 and as a high speed transport in 1944-45, where she was badly damaged by a kamikaze attack.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

HMS Cherwell (1903)

HMS Cherwell (1903) was a River class destroyer that served with the Grand Fleet in 1914, at Portsmouth in 1915-17 and the second half of 1918 and the Seventh Destroyer Flotilla on the Humber early in 1918.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

North American O-47

The North American O-47 was designed as a corps and division observation aircraft, but ended up serving as a trainer and target tug during the Second World War.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Churchill's Last Wartime Secret – the 1943 German Raid Airbrushed from History, Adrian Searle

Although I’m not convinced by the author’s case for a German raid on the Isle of Wight, his historical methods are sound, and he prevents the evidence for and against the story, and includes a detailed examination and debunking of similar stories from elsewhere around the coast. The idea of a raid on a radar base in 1943 is at best unproven, but the case is presented fairly, with much more balance than is often the case in this sort of book
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Modern Snipers, Leigh Neville

Looks at the uses of the sniper in the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, against the insurgencies that followed, and on domestic anti-terrorism and police duties. An interesting look at the surprising variety of roles carried out by modern snipers, from the obvious elimination of high value targets or military threats to long term reconnaissance duties. Also reveals just how many different organisations currently field snipers, from the world’s many Special Forces units to domestic police forces
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The White Chariot, Richard Denning

Book Four in a series set amongst the warring kingdoms of early seventh century Britain. Follows two half brothers from Northumbria as they try to gain allies for the opposing sides in the ongoing dynastic struggles between the two Northumbrian sub-kingdoms of Deira and Bernicia, with each of the brothers largely engaged in their own plot. An entertaining tale, set amongst the crumbling remains of Roman Britain and the warring kingdoms that replaced it
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Thursday, November 07, 2019

HMS Exe (1903)

HMS Exe (1903) was a River class destroyer that served with the Grand Fleet in 1914, the Portsmouth Escort Flotilla in 1915-17 and the Seventh Destroyer Flotilla on the Humber in 1918.

Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Martin YO-45

The Martin YO-45 was a temporary designation given to a Martin YB-10 while it was being evaluated as a high speed reconnaissance aircraft.

Tuesday, November 05, 2019

USS Hopkins (DD-249/ DMS-13)

USS Hopkins (DD-249/ DMS-13) was a Clemson class destroyer that took part in the invasion of Guadalcanal, the Solomon Islands campaign, the invasions of Saipan, Guam, the Philippines, Iwo Jima and Okinawa.

Monday, November 04, 2019

HMS Ettrick (1903)

HMS Ettrick (1903) was a River class destroyer that began the war with the Ninth Destroyer Flotilla based on the Tyne, but soon moved south to join the Portsmouth Escort Flotilla, where she helped protect troop ships crossing the channel. In July 1917 she was hit by a torpedo, losing her bows. She many not have been fully repaired, but from December 1917 she was listed as an active warship in the Navy List, serving on the Humber and at Portsmouth

Sunday, November 03, 2019

Objective Saint-Lo, 7 June 1944-18 July 1944, Georges Bernage

Looks at the brutal battles in the bocage country as the Americans attempted to reach Saint-Lo, a key road junction and the starting point for the planned breakout from Normandy. A very detailed account of the fighting seen from both sides, giving us a good idea of what it was like to take part in this hard fought battle, following the experiences of one particular German unit and two American officers in great detail (perhaps at the cost of the overall picture)
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Hitler's Last Levy in East Prussia, Bruno Just

A difficult combination of a useful war diary and a troublesome introduction. The diary covers the struggles of a Volkssturm unit fighting in East Prussia, and rings true, but the introduction is appalling biased, distorting the nature of the war, exaggerating Soviet war crimes and ignoring the far worse German crimes. Worthwhile for Just’s account of the last few months of the war and the heavy cost paid by the Volkssturm for Hitler’s determination to fight to the last man, and his harsh criticism of the Nazi party and its leadership
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The Regiment - 15 Years in the SAS, Rusty Firmin

A likeable, if rather sweary, autobiography of a member of the SAS who took part in the Iranian Embassy Siege, the Falklands War and several tours of Northern Ireland. The first half of the book covers the author’s transformation from very reluctant recruit to an enthusiastic gunner, then into the Commandos then finally the SAS, the second half his time in the SAS itself, ending with his views on the First Gulf War. Provides a valuable view of life in the SAS in the period that saw it rise to prominence after the Embassy Siege
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