Iron Cross - Issue 17
HITLER’S ‘TITANIC’: a unique look at the loss of the Wilhelm Gustloff hospital ship to a Soviet submarine during the closing months of WW2. It became the worst loss of life in any shipping disaster in maritime history.
On Sale: 28/06/2023
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What's in this Issue?
WHAT'S IN THIS ISSUE?
THE CONDOR ACES
In 1937, the German air force sent its Condor Legion to fight for Franco’s forces in Spain. In our cover story, Robert Forsyth puts a spotlight on the careers of the Luftwaffe’s earliest fighter aces.
Evacuating troops and civilians from the advancing Red Army in 1945, the MV Wilhelm Gustloff was sunk in The Baltic by a Soviet submarine in the largest ever loss of life in a maritime disaster.
The losses of several Messerschmitt Bf 110s over England during the Battle of Britain are covered in detail by Andy Saunders as part of our special focus on the aircraft type across this issue.
BURIED ON IMPACT
When a Messerschmitt Bf 110 was lost over Dorset in October 1940, its two-man crew were initially unaccounted for. We look at how their disappearance was finally solved in a 1976 excavation.
For aircrew downed in the North Sea, the chance of survival was bleak, but Chris Goss tells the story of one Luftwaffe bomber crew who were adrift in their dinghy for a traumatic four days.
LAST DAYS IN THE FÜHRERBUNKER
Although the story of Hitler’s last days with his entourage in the Berlin bunker is a grimly familiar one, we look at those events through the eyes of his faithful adjutant, Rochus Misch.
The story of tunnelling to plant explosives under enemy positions during the First World War is often told from the perspective of Allied tunnellers, but in this astonishingly detailed feature, Simon Jones outlines the struggles of Germany’s pioneers to literally undermine Allied lines in dangerous cat-and-mouse efforts to beat the enemy at his own game. They were efforts which left enduring scars on the landscapes of the former Western Front.
THIRD REICH FELDMARSCHALL’S BATON
Our Third Reich medals and decorations specialist, Dietrich Maerz, takes a forensic look at the grand opulence of the Third Reich Feldmarschall baton, detailing how it was manufactured.
OBJECT OF WAR
An extremely rare and unusual Luftwaffe item from a Messerschmitt Bf 110, together with the associated back story, is the focus of our featured object of war for this issue
THE ZERSTÖRER – A FAILURE?
To conclude our main Messerschmitt Bf 110 features in this issue we take an objective look at the often-maligned performance of the Bf 110 in 1940, asking: was it really a failure?
THE P 08 LUGER
In our ‘Notes from the Armoury’ series, Mark Khan looks at arguably the most famous German pistol of the First and Second World War; it was commonly known as the Luger, but officially the P 08.
EQUIPMENT IN COLOUR
This issue’s feature depicts one of the German army’s colossal 28cm mobile heavy railway guns of the First World War, pictured on the Western Front during May 1918.
We review a selection of new German military history book titles and give the ‘Editor’s Choice’ accolade to Dietrich Maerz’s two-volume and definitive work on the Ritterkreuz.
HANS LISKA’S TÄTIGKEITSNACHWEIS
For many professionals who had served the Third Reich, rehabilitation and return to civilian life in post-war Germany could be problematic, as war artist Hans Liska knew only too well.
COUNTERING THE TANK
When the British first introduced tanks to the battlefield, it required rapid thought by Germany in the development of anti-tank technology and desperate attempts to counter these new leviathans.
IMAGE OF WAR
To conclude our Messerschmitt Bf 110 ‘theme’ in this issue, Richard J Molloy presents his splendid colourisation of a unit commander’s aircraft preparing to set off for England.
Our poster in this issue shows how the Allies’ ‘V-For-Victory’ slogan of the Second World War was hijacked by Germany in attempts to neutralise its impact in occupied countries.