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The Yom Kippur War 1973: The Golan Heights
At 1345hrs on 6 October 1973, Israeli spotters in the observation post atop Mount Hermon saw Syrian gunners below them removing the camouflage nets from their guns. Ten minutes later shells began to rain down on Israeli positions all along the Golan Heights; the Yom Kippur War had begun. The shock Syrian attack caught the Israelis by surprise and by the afternoon of 7 October a Syrian brigade was less than 10km from the Sea of Galilee. ...
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The Yom Kippur War 1973: The Golan Heights
At 1345hrs on 6 October 1973, Israeli spotters in the observation post atop Mount Hermon saw Syrian gunners below them removing the camouflage nets from their guns. Ten minutes later shells began to rain down on Israeli positions all along the Golan Heights; the Yom Kippur War had begun. The shock Syrian attack caught the Israelis by surprise and by the afternoon of 7 October a Syrian brigade was less than 10km from the Sea of Galilee. Simon Dunstan describes in detail how amid desperate and bitter fighting the Israeli forces managed to turn the tide on the Golan Heights.
The Yom Kippur War 1973: The Sinai
The October War, or 'Yom Kippur' War, of 1973 was precipitated by the Arab states of the middle East, primarily Egypt and Syria in an attempt to force Israel to the negotiating table. Protected by the territories she had conquered in the 1967 'Six Day War', Israel had little incentive to negotiate. The carefully co-ordinated attacks launched by Egypt and Syria in the Sinai and on the Golan Heights respectively achieved complete tactical surprise. On 6 October 1973, following massive air strikes and artillery bombardments, the Egyptians launched an assault crossing of the Suez Canal and breached the sand embankments of the Bar Lev line using demolitions and water cannon. An Israeli counterattack was repulsed with heavy losses, and the Israelis dug in. The renewed Egyptian offensive on 14 October was thrown back however and in a lightning counterattack Ariel Sharon's armoured division seized a bridgehead across the Suez Canal. The Egyptians cut Sharon's troops off and in desperate fighting around the 'Chinese Farm' General Abraham Adan's Israeli division broke through to Sharon's bridgeheads. On 20 October the Israeli's broke out from their bridgeheads towards Ismailia and the Suez-Cairo road. Despite an initial failed UN attempt at a ceasefire on 22 October, a ceasefire finally did take effect on 24 October 1973. In the second of his two-volume analysis of the Yom Kippur war, Simon Dunstan details the fighting in the Sinai.
Zorndorf 1758: Frederick Faces Holy Mother Russia
In January 1758 Count Wilhelm Fermor marched into East Prussia at the head of 45,000 Russians. Frederick the Great was dismissive of the Russian army and failed to take the threat seriously. With the Russians laying siege to the fortress of Cüstrin, Frederick crossed the River Oder and cut their supply lines. On 25 August the two armies met at Zorndorf. This book details the bitter day-long battle in which the Russian infantry refused to buckle. Casualties were horrific, the Russians losing almost half their army. Frederick had managed to stave off the Russian threat but his opinion of their army had changed dramatically.
Poltava 1709: Russia Comes of Age
Poltava marked the demise of Sweden as a European great power and the rise of Russia. In 1707, the seemingly invincible Charles XII led his army deep into Russia. It was to prove his undoing - the long march eroded the fighting strength of the invaders; a vital supply convoy was lost; and the winter of 1708/9 was the worst in living memory. Although the great Northern War was to drag on for another twelve years, after 1709 Sweden was isolated and on the strategic defensive. Within a year both Saxony-Poland and Denmark would rejoin the anti-Swedish cause, and the capture of Vyborg to the north of St. Petersburg and Riga to the south would ensure the safety of Tsar Peter's fledgling European capital - all results of the battle. In this Osprey Campaign title Angus Konstam recounts the events leading up to Poltava and looks in particular at how this battle led to the destruction of the Swedish Army. As part of his investigation both armies and their commanders are examined carefully. Fluency in Russian allowed author Angus Konstam to visit the country regularly and gain access to primary source material previously unseen in the west: hard work which has made this account of Poltava stand out.
Gravelotte-St-Privat 1870: End of the Second Empire
Probably the hardest fought of all the battles of the Franco-Prussian War, Gravelotte-St-Privat shatters the myth of French inferiority to the Prussian army. Marshal Bazaine's French Army of the Rhine was attempting to retreat on Verdun when it was attacked by superior Prussian forces from both the First and Second armies. Occupying a ridge line running from St. Privat in the north to Gravelotte in the south, Bazaine's army inflicted heavy casualties on the advancing Prussian troops and beat off a determined attack by the Prussian Guard. Finally forced to retreat when Prussia's Saxon allies turned the northern flank of his outnumbered forces, Bazaine retreated into the fortress city of Metz. Bottled up in the city, unable to break out through the ring of Prussian forces and with no hope of relief Bazaine's army held on grimly to the end of the war. This battle had a decisive influence on the outcome of the war; had Bazaine met the Prussian forces on anything like equal terms, a victory could have turned the tide of the fighting. Instead, the French failure at Gravelotte-St-Privat led directly to their final defeat at Sedan, the collapse of Napoleon III's regime, and the proclamation of the German Empire. This book examines the events of this fateful action.