Combat Vehicles of Russia’s Special Forces

Published: September 16th, 2020     
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Cover
Author: Mark Galeotti. Illustrated by Adam Hook
Reviewed by: Marc K. Blackburn - IPMS# 42892
ISBN #: 978-1-4728-4183-4
Price: $19.00
Product provided by: Osprey Publishing

Osprey is a prolific publishing company based in England that not only covers historical military history topics, but modern ones as well. Published in 2020, this work as a tight focus on vehicles used by the wide variety of elite and specialist troops in the Russian Republic. As with nearly every series of Osprey the book is filled with well reproduced photographs (all color) and illustrations. It divides the book into the various users and, again as a regular feature of these books, a short list of suggested works for those who would like to know more.

The first part of the book is related to Russian Special Forces, the Spetsnaz. The book focuses on a cross section of light vehicles used by these elite soldiers. They book focuses on light military vehicles, primarily their equivalent to HUMVEEs and buggies used by U.S. Special Forces. Given the recent support Russia was giving to the Assad regime in Syria, much of the use of these vehicles is in that context. From Special Forces, the book moves to airborne, concentrating on the venerable BMD and BTR. The BMD, a smaller version of the Russian BMP fighting vehicle has seen a great deal of use and service. Obviously, it has continued to evolve into a vehicle that meets the needs of the airborne which serve as light infantry....akin the American Stryker Brigades.

From the airborne, the book briefly covers the naval infantry and their choices of newer vehicles before moving to more specialized vehicles used in the arctic and urban warfare before moving to domestic security services. It is interesting to note, for example, that there is a domestic manufacturing capacity for snow mobiles. Given the specialty vehicles built for urban warfare, I would have liked to see more about the development and use of the Terminator, the specialty vehicle built on a T-72 chassis. The remainder of the book covers the plethora of light vehicles used by the various internal security divisions of the Russian Republic.

Given the relative lack of public information on Russian vehicles, this is certainly a welcome addition. I am assuming most of this information came for public sources, so it is nice to a place where you can get this information. It is a nice balance between describing the nomenclature of the vehicles and there use. I imagine that this book is a snapshot in time and will have to be updated in the future. For modelers, there are some vehicles that are highlighted that have been made into kits. My thanks to IPMS and Osprey Publications for giving me the opportunity to review this book.

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    Russian Vehicle_1
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    Russian Vehicle_3
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    Russian Vehicle_4
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    Russian Vehicle_5

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