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Following the battle for Crete in May 1941, Hitler refused to undertake any further large-scale airborne operations due to the high casualty rate. The Fallschirmjäger subsequently took up a new role as elite 'line' infantry, and they served in the Mediterranean from 1942 to 1945, taking part in the conflict in North Africa, Sicily and Italy. Their performance in such hard-fought battles as El Alamein and Monte Cassino reinforced their reputation as some of the toughest troops of World War II. This book explores their changing role in organisation, training and doctrine as the paratroopers developed into Germany's finest frontline soldiers.
About the Author
Bruce Quarrie graduated with honours from Cambridge University in 1968 and started work as a journalist with 'The Financial Times'. He wrote his first book, on wargaming, in 1974. Bruce's principal interest was in World War II, and his definitive 'Encyclopedia of the German Army' was even translated and published in German. Bruce passed away on 4 September 2004.