Sunday, July 5, 2009

Panzer Commander

It's been a while since I've posted. Moving and the new job have absorbed the bulk of my time. I have not been able to make any F2F contacts for ASL here in Lubbock, so it is probably going to have to be VASL until I can convert someone to the One True Game. ASL posts, therefore, will probably be a little sparse until I can get a schedule working. In the WWII vein, however....

I had the pleasure of finishing a new book this afternoon. Based on recommendations from the GS forums, I picked up Panzer Commander, by Hans von Luck. Hans von Luck was the commander of the 7th and 21st panzer divisions under Rommel. As a strict study of tactical doctrine, the book is somewhat lacking. I had hoped for a little more in that arena. However, it was an extremely pleasant read. I am a big fan of the writing style of Stephen Ambrose and this book presented his history and doings in much the same vein. I was particularly struck with the sentiment (and I have seen it in other books) of camraderie between former enemies (soldiers from different armies): German and Russian, German and American, German and French, and German and British. Having never been in the military, the respect that seems to exist, even for enemies, between professional soldiers is very appealing. The distinction between the Weremacht and the SS also struck me as profound, and seemed to be readily accepted, even by von Luck's Russian captors.

If you are looking for a strict study of tactical/strategic doctrine, I'd suggest that you keep looking. If you want a decent feel of what being a soldier in the German Army during WWII was like, this is an excellent read.