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The Last Year of the Luftwaffe (Paperback)

May 1944 to May 1945

Aviation > WWII Military > Frontline Books WWII

By Dr Alfred Price
Frontline Books
Pages: 192
Illustrations: 32 illustrations in separate plate section
ISBN: 9781848328662
Published: 14th December 2015
Expected Re-release Date: 30th July 2024


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The Last Year of the Luftwaffe is the classic story of a once all-conquering force struggling to stave off an inevitable and total defeat. This superbly written book gives a complete account of Luftwaffe operations during the last twelve months of the fighting in Europe – including the dramatic Bodenplatte (or 'Baseplate') offensive over the Ardennes in December 1944.

In this comprehensive examination of Hitler's air force, Dr Alfred Price examines its state from May 1944 to May 1945, analysing not only the forces available to it, but also the likely potential, and impact, of new aircraft and weapons systems. He also assesses the Luftwaffe's High Command's performance and the effect of Allied attacks and operations.

In doing so he rejects a number of long-standing myths, clarifies the impact of the jet and rocket fighters, and demonstrates that the Luftwaffe performed as well as could be expected under the harsh circumstances of fighting a losing war.

The brief career of the Nazi Luftwaffe ran from the Spanish Civil War to the apex of power, with the victory in the Battle for France, the check, by the Battle of Britain and the increasingly fast slide to defeat. In 1944 the promise of new wonder weapons lay against the reality of losing air superiority in the skies over the Homeland and the similar defeat on the Eastern Front . – Highly Recommended.

Read the complete review here.


The title is self-explanatory however I had not expected to find quite so much of interest in the chapters of this book. It really does capture the mood of desperation as the much-vaunted Luftwaffe teeters on the brink of extinction. The author has managed to weave together every aspect of the final death throes of the German Air Force as it uses Jets, Rocket Propelled fighters and flying bombs alongside the depleted remnants of its conventional squadrons. We can only be grateful that these efforts were so hindered by political mismanagement and a combination of a lack of aircraft, aircrew, fuel and an overwhelming Allied onslaught in the air.

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