SS-Kampfgruppe Peiper...

... from Kagero, via Casemate

Title:  SS-Kampfgruppe Peiper

Author: Massimiliano Afiero

Publisher:  Kagero

ISBN:  978-83-951575-0-9

A 112 page hardback from Kagero which takes on the story of Waffen SS commander, Jochen Peiper.  He was one of the best known SS commanders of WW2 and this provides a fine account of his career, without trying to avoid the controversy that surrounded a number of crimes against both soldiers and civilians committed by his units over the years.  The book opens with the background of his family, born into a military family in 1915, he and his brothers went on to serve in the military, all in the SS.  We learn the fate of both his brothers along with the detailed account of their more well known brother, Jochen's wartime career.

The various chapters follow the chronological sequence of his wartime career and it is interesting to see just how wide his experience was.  It starts with his time on Himmler's staff, before being command of a combat unit in 1942, based in France as they recovered from losses on the Russian Front.  He went on to serve in the Ukraine, at Kursk, in Italy and back to France as he was in Normandy during the fighting around Caen.  Then we get a long section on the events of his part in the Ardennes offensive over the Christmas of 1944/45. Following that he was in Hungary and at the end of the war, in Austria.  Peiper survived the war, but died in his French home in France when it was attacked in 1976.

This is a really interesting book to read, about a famous SS commander of WW2.  It tells the story including personal accounts, appropriate maps, over 330 archive photos plus 8 good quality colour profiles of AFVs at the back of the book.  Kagero and author Massimiliano Afiero have made a very nice job of this history piece which I think many interested in the history of WW2 will enjoy.

Distributed by Casemate Books, who kindly provided my review copy.

Robin