British Armed Forces
The Lower Deck of the Royal Navy Since 1939 to the Present Day
1st Edition Hardcover ISBN: 1591140358
Brian Lavery, the pre-eminent historian of the Royal Navy, returns with the third volume of his engaging social history of the Royal Navy's 'lower deck'--the world of the seamen as distinct from the officers of the 'quarterdeck.' He examines the world of the sailor from the outbreak of war in 1939 through 70 years of change up to his place in the modern Royal Navy. The author illuminates the inherent adaptability of the professional sailor, as new technologies demanded increased professionalism, specialization and training. He also focuses on the changing social structure of the Navy, and the periods of expansion as the service coped with great demands made through two World Wars and innumerable other conflicts across the globe.
American Loyalist Troops 1775-84
Paperback ISBN: 1846033144
To mark the 450th book in the Men-at-Arms series we return to the subject of the very first book in the series, which was published nearly 35 years ago. Author of 27 other Men-at-Arms titles Ren? Chartrand uses newly discovered material to offer a more modern analysis of the American Provincial Corps in this book, American Loyalist Troops. Packed with new photographs, completely new and up-to-date text and illustrations from Gerry Embleton (the much-loved illustrator of over 60 Osprey titles) this book examines the history of the American volunteers who fought on the side of King George in the American Revolutionary War. In total something between 30,000 and 50,000 of these "Tories" served in dozens of units, on all fronts from Canada to Florida, and many regiments distinguished themselves in battle. After the final British defeat the survivors and their families withdrew, many into Canada, where they continued to provide a loyal militia to defend the Crown territory. This book will provide updated and comprehensive information on unit identities, commanders, strengths, areas of enlistment, combat record, tactics, uniforms and equipment.
The British Carrier Strike Fleet After 1945
Hardcover ISBN: 1591146011
As a follow-up to the highly regarded British Pacific Fleet, David Hobbs looks at the post-World War II fortunes of the most powerful fleet in the Royal Navyits decline in the face of diminishing resources, its final fall at the hands of ignorant politicians, and its recent resurrection in the form of the Queen Elizabeth class carriers, the largest ships ever built for the Royal Navy. Despite prophecies that nuclear weapons would make conventional forces obsolete, British carrier-borne aircraft were almost continuously employed. The Royal Navy faced new challenges in places like Korea, Egypt, and the Persian Gulf. During these trials the Royal Navy invented techniques and devices crucial to modern carrier operations, pioneering novel forms of warfare tactics for countering insurgency and terrorism. This book combines narratives of poorly understood operations with clear analysis of their strategic and political background. With beautiful illustrations and original research, British Carrier Strike Fleet tells an important but largely untold story of renewed significance as Britain once again embraces carrier operation.
British Infantryman Versus Zulu Warrior
Anglo-Zulu War 1879
Paperback ISBN: 1782003657
Expert ananlyis and first-hand accounts of combat during the Anglo-Zulu war in 1879: Nyezane, iSandlwana, and Khambula. As seen in the movie Zulu, starring Michael Caine, Zulu discipline and courage overcame British firepower at iSandlwana, and almost at Rorke's Drift. Featuring specially commissioned artwork, expert analysis and carefully chosen first-hand accounts, this absorbing study traces the development of infantry tactics in the Anglo-Zulu War by examining three key clashes at unit level. The short but savage Anglo-Zulu War of 1879 pitched well-equipped but complacent British soldiers and their auxiliaries into combat with one of history's finest fighting forces, the Zulu Nation. The clashes between these two very different combatants prompted rapid tactical innovation on both sides, as the British and their Zulu opponents sought to find the optimal combination of mobility and firepower. Fought on 22 January 1879, the clash at Nyezane saw Zulu forces, among them the uMxapho ibutho, ambushing a British column; the British forces, including Lieutenant Martin's company of the 2/3rd Foot, engaged their opponents in the prescribed fashion, as honed in the recent conflict with the Xhosa a year earlier. The Zulu attack was premature, and by 9.30am, after about 90 minutes of heavy fighting, they were repulsed. The British tactics worked, but largely only because the Zulus had an uncharacteristically low numerical superiority. At iSandlwana later that same day, however, the shortcomings of the British tactics, obscured at Nyezane, were made brutally apparent. The Zulus had sufficient manpower not only to withstand that level of casualties but also to complete their encirclement of the British forces, and as the British line disintegrated the firefight gave way to the close-quarter fighting at which the Zulus excelled; not one man of the 1/24th and 2/24th Foot survived. The British forces surrounded and crushed at iSandlwana included Captain W.E. Mostyn's company of the 1/24th Foot, which was initially deployed in advance of the British camp but was later withdrawn to form part of the firing line; their opponents included the iNgobamkhosi ibutho, many of whose warriors left first-hand accounts of the battle. While iSandlwana demonstrated the strengths of the Zulu tactics, it also demonstrated their weaknesses - for the casualties inflicted by the British foreshadowed the carnage they would reap once the British wholeheartedly embraced close-order tactics and defended positions. At Khambula on 29 March 1879, a much bigger British force adopted a defensive position and defeated the same Zulu units who had previously triumphed at iSandlwana, including the uKhandempemvu ibutho, which came close to storming the British defences. At iSandlwana, the Zulus had been able to screen their advance with skirmishers and take advantage of the broken and grassy ground, but at Khambula their spontaneous attack did not allow them to disperse properly and they were funnelled together on a contracting front over woefully exposed ground. The British had learned the tactical lessons of iSandlwana and deliberately sought to restrict the Zulu ability to manoeuvre and co-ordinate their attacks, and to concentrate their own firepower.
How Front-Line Reports from the Crimean War Brought Down the British Government
Hardcover ISBN: 1849540128
Presents the story of how John Delane, editor of "The Times", brought about the resignation of the entire cabinet of the British Government over its conduct of the Crimean War.
Dictionary of British Military History
Paperback ISBN: 0713675071
From the invasion of Britain by the Danes through the battles of Hastings, Agincourt, and Waterloo to the present day, this fascinating dictionary includes entries on battles, campaigns, commanders, ranks, regiments, uniforms, and weapons. The featured historical outline of the British Army since its formation in the 17th century includes brief histories of each battle and biographies of military leaders, making this a fundamental reference for students, history buffs, military enthusiasts, and anglophiles.
The Fall of British Asia, 1941-1945
Paperback ISBN: 067402219x
In the early stages of the Second World War, the vast crescent of British-ruled territories stretching from India to Singapore appeared as a massive Allied asset. It provided scores of soldiers and great quantities of raw materials and helped present a seemingly impregnable global defense against the Axis. Yet, within a few weeks in 1941-42, a Japanese invasion had destroyed all this, sweeping suddenly and decisively through south and southeast Asia to the Indian frontier, and provoking the extraordinary revolutionary struggles which would mark the beginning of the end of British dominion in the East and the rise of today's Asian world. More than a military history, this gripping account of groundbreaking battles and guerrilla campaigns creates a panoramic view of British Asia as it was ravaged by warfare, nationalist insurgency, disease, and famine. It breathes life into the armies of soldiers, civilians, laborers, businessmen, comfort women, doctors, and nurses who confronted the daily brutalities of a combat zone which extended from metropolitan cities to remote jungles, from tropical plantations to the Himalayas. Drawing upon a vast range of Indian, Burmese, Chinese, and Malay as well as British, American, and Japanese voices, the authors make vivid one of the central dramas of the twentieth century: the birth of modern south and southeast Asia and the death of British rule.
A Genius for Deception
How Cunning Helped the British Win Two World Wars
Hardcover ISBN: 019538704x
In February 1942, intelligence officer Victor Jones erected 150 tents behind British lines in North Africa. "Hiding tanks in Bedouin tents was an old British trick," writes Nicholas Rankin; German general Erwin Rommel not only knew of the ploy, but had copied it himself. Jones knew that Rommel knew. In fact, he counted on it--for these tents were empty. With the deception that he was carrying out a deception, Jones made a weak point look like a trap. In A Genius for Deception, Rankin offers a lively and comprehensive history of how Britain bluffed, tricked, and spied its way to victory in two world wars. As he shows, a coherent program of strategic deception emerged in World War I, resting on the pillars of camouflage, propaganda, secret intelligence, and special forces. All forms of deception found an avid sponsor in Winston Churchill, who carried his enthusiasm for deceiving the enemy into World War II. Rankin vividly recounts such little-known episodes as the invention of camouflage by two French artist-soldiers, the creation of dummy airfields for the Germans to bomb during the Blitz, and the fabrication of an army that would supposedly invade Greece. Strategic deception would be key to a number of WWII battles, culminating in the massive misdirection that proved critical to the success of the D-Day invasion in 1944. Deeply researched and written with an eye for telling detail, A Genius for Deception shows how British used craft and cunning to help win the most devastating wars in human history.
The Lee-Enfield Rifle
Paperback ISBN: 1849087881
The Lee-Enfield is one of the 20th century's most recognizable and longest-serving military rifles. It was adopted by the British Army in 1895 and only replaced by the L1A1 SLR in 1957; even then a sniper variant, the L42A1, was used until 1989, giving a service life of nearly a century. It saw combat from the Boer War onwards, and thousands are still in use today, notably by the Taliban in Afghanistan; it is estimated that 17 million have been produced. The Lee-Enfield featured an innovative detachable ten-round magazine; this large capacity, together with the weapon's revolutionary bolt-action operation, made it possible for well-drilled shooters to fire 20 to 30 rounds in 60 seconds (the 'mad minute'). This extraordinary speed gave rise to mistaken German reports of being opposed by massed machine guns in 1914. The Short Magazine Lee-Enfield (SMLE), introduced in 1903, set a new precedent in military rifles, being neither a carbine nor a full-length rifle but an ingenious compromise that was soon copied by other countries. The Lee-Enfield equipped British, Commonwealth and other forces throughout the world wars and well into the 1960s, giving excellent service in every kind of terrain and weather. Soldier's recollections of the rifle are overwhelmingly affectionate (it was known as the Smellie); today it remains a very popular target rifle for competitive shooting, and modern copies are being manufactured to meet demand. Featuring first-hand accounts, brand-new full-colour artwork and close-up photographs, many in colour, this is the story of the Lee-Enfield, the innovative, reliable and long-lived rifle that equipped British and other forces through the world wars and beyond.