Carbine Fortress 82...

...American Special No 3032, new from Tankograd


Title: Carbine Fortress 82

Author: Jochen Vollert, Walter Bohm, Wolfgang Igert, Diego Ruiz Palmer

Publisher: Tankograd

A new American Special from Tankograd is very up to date, covering Carbine Fortress, the field training exercise element of the wider exercise, REFORGER 82. With text throughout provided in both English and German languages.  The first 10 pages are all text, giving the background to the political situation of the Cold War at the time, explaining the setting for the event and the planned phasing.  It details the Order of Battle for the units involved, including US Army, West German, Danish, French, Belgium, Luxembourg and Great Britain contributions.  It then gives a day by day account of the course of events between 13 and 23 September.

The rest of this 64 page book holds the heart of these Tankograd specials, with a super collection of both colour and black & white archive photos which illustrate the many men and vehicles that took part in Carbine Fortress 82.  The first section looks at the deployment of participating units between 8 and 12 September.  Some interesting vehicles among the picture and some fine colour references showing the multi-colour MERDC scheme.  The next stage (13-15 September) looks at the Orange Force attacks across the imaginary international border using a combat bridge.  With M60A3 and M113 plus the M88 floating bridge equipment in action, as well as handy unit organisation charts.  Next there was an airborne assault element, with M151 MUTTs and Gama Goats all included, along with armour support from M60A3 and an early deployment of the M1 Abrams (in a plain green finish).

Next comes a section on the Blue forces counter-attack, on 16/17 September and within this one we see the dangers for the German civilian population during these large scale operations, with an M60A3 that ran downhill when under maintenance, crashing into the wall of a house, luckily not harming the householders though it must have been one heck of a shock.  This is followed by the Blue forces offensive and this has some great photos of the M812 Ribbon Bridge system in action.  The final few pages are devoted to the involvement of the US 3rd Infantry Division (Mechanised) which was deploying the first versions of the M1 Abrams, at that time armed with the 105mm gun.

This provides a detailed story of one of these major Cold War exercises that NATO forces undertook in Germany.  It should be popular with veterans of the nations involved, those wanting to understand more of the history of the Cold War, while the many colour images will be welcomed by modellers as useful references for a wide variety of equipment.

Thanks to UK stockists Bookworld for my example.