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From The Realm of a Dying Sun Volume 1 by Douglas E. Nash Sr.  This is an amazing book from cover to ...

From The Realm of a Dying Sun Volume 1 by Douglas E. Nash Sr. From The Realm of a Dying Sun Volume 1 by Douglas E. Nash Sr.

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IV SS-Panzerkorps

From The Realm of a Dying Sun Volume 1


Douglas E. Nash Sr.

 This is an amazing book from cover to cover. The author not only shows you the IV SS-Panzerkorps from inception on August 5th 1943, to the end of the Battle of Modlin on November 25th 1944, he does it in spectacular fashion. You get to see the actual creation of the Panzerkorps from the ground up. From the paperwork that created the Panzerkorps, to the assigning of medical and all other staff, it is in this book. The first ninety pages are taken up by the organization and the actual officers who were to command the separate parts of the Panzerkorps. The rest of the book's 500 pages are taken up by the intensive fighting the Panzerkorps took part in on the Eastern Front. 

 The two Panzer Divisions that made up the Panzerkorps were the 3rd SS-Panzer Division Totenkopf, and the 5th SS-Panzer Division Wiking. Both of these divisions were already known for being in the thick of the battles on the Eastern Front. Their history after being coupled in the Panzerkorps only cemented their reputations. I think we should stop here to explain something. It is possible to read about the SS-Panzerkorps and be amazed at their level of battle-worthiness while fighting at extreme odds against the Soviets; however, you can still feel a revulsion at what the SS actually stood for. At this time of the war the reinforcements sent to the SS divisions were very rarely recruits, but ordinary Germans who had been drafted into the Armed Forces of Germany. This fact makes the actual exploits of the IV SS-Panzerkorps even more amazing. To be continually refilled with recruits and then able to give them the esprit de corps that the veterans had was pretty incredible.

 One of the more interesting claims by the author is that the Warsaw Rising did not really impact the German forces fighting off the Soviets that much. As a matter of fact, Field Marshal Model was actually using the IV SS-Panzerkorps at that moment to counterattack the Soviet forces attempting to capture Warsaw. 

 The book is an excellent overview of what it takes to start up an armored corps from scratch. If it showed only that, the book would be worth buying. Then the author goes on to show it fighting for its life in amazing detail. From the decisions taken at the highest levels to the actual stories of the men in the tanks and on the ground, it is an unparalleled work of military history. The book comes with a good amount of pictures of the officers and troops, along with some well done maps. It also comes with a glossary of German military terms. Thank you Casemate Publishers for letting me review this book, and I am anxiously awaiting Volume II. The fighting on the Eastern Front in 1944 is usually given the short shrift in books compared to the volumes written about the Western Front at the time.