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Osprey Campaign 42 : Bagration 1944 : The Destruction of Army Group Centre

On 22 June 1944, three years to the day after Germany's 1941 invasion of the Soviet Union, the Red Army launched a massive offensive in Belorussia. Codenamed 'Operation Bagration', this campaign climaxed five weeks later with the Red Army at the gates of Warsaw. In many respects Operation Bagration was the 1941 Operation Barbarossa invasion in reverse, fought over many of the same battlefields. The Wehrmacht's Army Group Centre was routed, a total of 17 Wehrmacht divisions were utterly destroyed, and over 50 other German divisions were shattered. It was the most calamitous defeat of the German armed forces in World War II, costing the Wehrmacht more men and material than the cataclysm at Stalingrad 16 months earlier. It was all the more catastrophic when the Anglo-American forces in Normandy inflicted a similar blow in August 1944 by trapping the Wehrmacht forces in the Falaise pocket in France. Although known to historians of the Eastern Front, this important campaign is little appreciated in the West, overshadowed by the Normandy campaign. Ably supported by a good selection of maps, photographs and birds-eye views Steven J Zaloga sets out to address this imbalance in his study of Operation Bagration.

    Contents
  • Origins of the Battle
  • Opposing Commanders
  • Opposing Armies
  • Opposing Plans
  • Operation Bagration
  • Aftermath
  • Chronology
  • Wargaming Operation Bagration
  • A Guide to Further Reading

 

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