Panzers on the Vistula (Kindle)
Retreat and Rout in East Prussia 1945
Hans Schäufler fought as the commander of a Jagdpanther tank destroyer in rearguard actions against the Red Army in East Prussia in 1945. Then, as an infantryman, he took part in the doomed defence of Danzig and made a daring escape across the Baltic in a small boat. This is his story, and it is the story of tens of thousands of soldiers and civilians who were caught up in the chaos and tragedy of the German retreat. His eyewitness account is one of the most revealing records we have of the experience of the collapse of the Third Reich in the east.
As well as giving a vivid insight into the German army’s tactics as they fell back before the Soviet advance, he describes the appalling conditions and the fear and panic that gripped the city. Acute shortages of men, equipment, ammunition and fuel crippled the defence, but extraordinary resilience, heroism and ingenuity still motivated the soldiers who were fighting for a lost cause and facing certain defeat.
As featured 'ON THE SHELF'Wargames Illustrated, October 2018