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Transporter (2): Luftwaffe Transport Units 1943-45
By Martin Pegg
Publisher: Classic Publications 2006 96 Pages
PDF 18 MB
This book includes specially prepared colour artworks and first-hand reminiscences from those who actually flew with the Transportflieger during the war. Covering an often ignored, but essential, part of the German war machine during World War 2, "Luftwaffe Transport Units 1943-1945 Vol. 2" is a comprehensive account of these units which will be required reading for all historians and modellers of the Luftwaffe during these years.
On 8 November 1942, the Allies launched Operation 'Torch' and landed British and American troops in Morocco and Algeria. The Allied plan was to destroy Axis positions in North Africa by advancing these forces from the east while General Bernard Montgomery's Eighth Army pursued Feldmarschall Erwin Rommel's forces from the west. However, although the landings themselves were successful, the Allies had miscalculated the likely enemy reaction. They believed that the Germans would have difficulty in transferring troops and equipment for sustained operations, so when the Germans immediately raced to establish and hold a bridgehead in Tunisia, their speed and determination far exceeded anything the Allies had expected.
Fighter, fighter-bomber and bomber units were immediately rushed to Tunisia, some of the latter arriving from as far afield as Norway. But the most impressive, indeed astonishing, of the Luftwaffe's achievements was the reinforcement of its air transport fleet. This was a necessary prerequisite as the sea routes to Tunisia were unsafe due to Allied superiority, yet troops and equipment had to be ferried in as rapidly as possible. German dependency on air transport in the theatre, already important, therefore increased, and the air transport force was eventually expanded from 205 to 673 aircraft.