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Following the defeat of France in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71 and the absorption of the provinces of Alsace and Lorraine into the newly formed German Empire, the German Army decided to construct a fortress line from Strasbourg to Luxembourg to protect their new territory and counter the great fortress system that was being built from Switzerland to Belgium, the centerpiece of which was the great Moselstellung (Moselle Position) of Metz/Thionville. The fortress consisted of concrete batteries that fired 10 and 15cm guns from steel turrets, concrete barracks, infantry strong points with ditches defended by casemates, and concrete trenches with shelters and steel observation cupolas. The entire position was surrounded by a wide belt of barbed wire entanglements that were defended by machine gun and rifle positions, and hidden from the view of the attacker. Illustrated with photographs and full color cutaway artwork, this book examines the design and development of the fortress and analyzes its use in combat, focusing particularly on the part it played in holding up General Patton's Third Army's advance across France in 1944

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Book Details

ISBN: 9781846033025
ISBN-10: 1846033020
Format: Paperback
(248mm x 184mm x 7mm)
Pages: 64
Imprint: Osprey Publishing
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Publish Date: 3-Sep-2008
Country of Publication: United Kingdom


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Author Biography - Clayton Donnell

Clayton Donnell has had a life-long fascination with the Brialmont forts built at Liege and Namur. He spent his early years living in Belgium, and often visited the sites of the forts. Over the years he has amassed a large collection of material relating to this period, and has translated much of it from French to English. He has previously co-written Modern European Military Fortifications, 1870-1950: A Selected Annotated Bibliography (Praeger, 2004), and has created websites on the forts of Liege and Namur, and the Maginot Line. This is his first book for Osprey Publishing. The author lives in Southampton, PA."

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