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Welcome to Clash of Steel!

Featured battle : Bayonne

Part of The French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars

Date : 26 February 1814 - 26 April 1814

General Hope's Corps [ two British Divisions and two independent brigades] was detached from the main army to besiege the town of Bayonne. Soult had left General Thouvenot in command of 14,000 troops to hold the city. On the 13th April word reach the area that Napoleon had fallen. The relaxed atmosphere of the allied camp was shattered when on the 14th April Thouvenot, with 6,000 men, launched an attack on the allied lines. Outposts and front lines quickly fell but determined resistance and then a counter-attack drove the French back into the city. The seige continued and Thouvenot finally surrendered the city on the 26th April, twenty days after Napoleon's abdication. This ended the Peninsular Campaign.

Featured image :

German WW1 Equipment - MUR3_ww1mauser

German WW1 Equipment - MUR3_ww1mauser

Pack and weapons of the German Infantry Regiment nr.28 of 1914

Gallery updated : 2019-01-06 16:35:56

Featured review :

The Battle for the Maginot Line, 1940

Donnell, Clayton
If you've ever wondered what the point of the Maginot Line was, this book will tell you. It begins with a decent overview and history of the construction and layout of the forts and other works, along with a brief description of the concepts. It then jumps into an exceptionally detailed account of the battle for each fortified section including the types of casemate, the units and composition of both sides involved, and the date, time and nature of their demise. It also covers the unsung resistance of the southern section of the line which proved very successful against the Italian advance, but to me the most affecting sections are those where the interval troops, infantry support and artillery backup are withdrawn, leaving small handfuls of men to delay panzer regiments. The book concludes with a thought-provoking section on the strengths and weaknesses of the line and whether it's reputation as a military 'white elephant' is undeserved, and caught up in (and often blamed for) the whole debacle of June 1940 which was so psychologically damaging the French nation.

As with many military history books, this one could do with more and better maps. Most chapters contain tactical diagrams of offensives but they are quite small and difficult to read, so I had an atlas to hand (and google maps!) to get a better impression of the spatial situation. On the whole though, an excellent and very well researched read, though perhaps a little too detailed to keep the casual reader's attention. I for one, however, am already planning my next trip to SF Maubeuge, Haguenau and Ouvrage Sainte-Agnes, and this book will be in my hand-luggage.
Pen & Sword Military, Barnsley, 2017

Reviewed : 2018-01-08 14:28:58