Kursk 1943

Published: October 27th, 2014     
Product Image
Author: Robery Forczyk
Reviewed by: Tim Wilding - IPMS# 47420
ISBN #: 9781782008194
Other Publication Information: Paperback, 96 pages, black and white pictures, color maps and illustrations
Price: $21.95
Product / Stock #: Campaign 272
Product provided by: Osprey Publishing

In July 1943, Germany launched Operation Citadel to cut off the Kursk salient. Kursk 1943: The Northern Front deals with the Northern Front of this offensive; little attention is usually given to this front of the offensive. Most of the Kursk histories deal with the Southern German push with its huge tank battles, but in the north, the Russians had been preparing for this offensive for months and had constructed three strong lines of defenses. This resulted in a small German penetration and more mine and defensive warfare.

The book is laid out in the following sections:

  • Origins of the Campaign
  • Chronology
  • Opposing Plans
  • Opposing Commanders
  • Opposing Forces
  • Citadel Offensive
  • Operation Kutusov
  • Aftermath
  • The Battlefield Today

The author offers a very detailed and well researched order of battle. His descriptions of the opposing commanders of the major units are very interesting. The main Russian commander, Rokossovsky, was imprisoned during Stalin's purge of the Red Army in the late 1930s and had all his teeth knocked out by the Russian secret police. Model was the German commander and was one of Hitler's favorites, so he got away with doing what was militarily needed, and not what Hitler wanted, which lead to massive causalities on the Russian side. This shows how well the German military would have performed without Hitler's constant interference.

The author used the German names for the military formations, but used English for the Russians formations. This made it kind of hard to read while trying to pronounce German words, but it did help me keep the units straight as to what side they belonged to.

I liked the chapter that dealt with Operation Kutusov, the Russian offensive to clean up the Orel salient. This battle receives very little historical attention, since the Russians lost so many resources to take the same area.

For the modelers, there were some black-and-white photos of armored vehicles and a few airplanes. This was more of a history book and should be read as that, not as a reference for paint schemes or detailed vehicle descriptions. This book was a very quick read; I finished it in a couple lunch hours at work.

I would like to thank Osprey Publishing and IPMS/USA for the chance to read and review this excellent book.

  • Back Cover
    Back Cover
  • “Opposing Commanders” Chapter
    “Opposing Commanders” Chapter
  • IL-2 Photo
    IL-2 Photo
  • Tiger Photo
    Tiger Photo
  • Battle Map Illustration
    Battle Map Illustration
  • Overall Plan Illustration
    Overall Plan Illustration
  • Artwork Sample
    Artwork Sample

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