In late July 1941, Hitler ordered Army Group South to seize the Crimea as part of its operations to secure the Ukraine and the Donets Basin, in order to protect the vital Romanian oil refineries at Ploesti from Soviet air attack. After weeks of heavy fighting, the Germans breached the Soviet defences and overran most of the Crimea. By November 1941 the only remaining Soviet foothold in the area was the heavily fortified naval base at Sevastopol. Operation Sturgeon Haul, the final assault on Sevastopol, was one of the very few joint service German operations of World War II, with two German corps and a Romanian corps supported by a huge artillery siege train, (the Giant 800 mm gun -Schwerer Gustav-), also were three 600 mm Karl-Gerät self-propelled mortars, the Luftwaffe's crack VIII Flieger Korps and a flotilla of S-Boats provided by the Kriegsmarine. This book closely examines the impact of logistics, weather and joint operational planning upon the last major German offensive victory in the eastern front of WWII. This book, as usual with the Campaign series, analyse commanders, the planing, equipments and the armies, before and during the battle and it tells the story from both sides, attacker and defender. Full color 3-D ‘bird’s-eye-views’, battle scenes, soldiers or equipment drawings and maps as well as black and white photographs that support's the text. In this battle of siege, von Manstein will show his wide tactical flexibility, which was awarded with being promoted to field marshal, before even the battle was complete. This book shows that Hitler, however, would draw wrong conclusions after sevastopol, he believed that any Russian fortress could be annihilated, with brute force and persistence, something that Germany would pay dearly in Leningrad and especially in Stalingrad, where the Wehrmacht, would find a catastrophe at the end of the campaign, and that would happen in just a few months, after the events of this book.
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