From the Realm of a Dying Sun
Volume III - IV. SS-Panzerkorps from Budapest to Vienna, February–May 1945
352 Pages, 6 x 9 in, 50 photographs, maps
- February 2021
- In Stock
Globe at War
In the closing months of World War II, with Budapest’s fall on 12 February 1945 and the breakout attempt by the IX SS-Gebirgskorps having failed, the only thing the IV. SS-Panzerkorps could do was fall back to a more defensible line and fortify the key city of Stuhlweissenburg. Exhausted after three relief attempts in January 1945 and outnumbered by the ever-increasing power of Marshal Tolbukhin’s Third Ukrainian Front, SS-Obergruppenführer Gille’s veterans dug in for a lengthy period of defensive warfare. However, Adolf Hitler had not forgotten about the Hungarian theater of operations nor the country’s rich oilfields and was sending help.
To the detriment of the defense of Berlin, SS-Oberstgruppenführer Sepp Dietrich’s legendary 6. Panzerarmee was on its way, not to retake Budapest, but to encircle and destroy Tolbukhin’s forces and completely reverse the situation in south-eastern Europe in Hitler’s favor. This overly ambitious offensive, known as Frühlingserwachen (Spring Awakening), was soon bogged down in the face of resolute Soviet defenses aided by the springtime thaw. Heralded as Nazi Germany’s last great offensive of World War II, it resulted in great losses to Hitler’s last armored reserve in exchange for only minor gains. Though it played a supporting role during the battle, the IV. SS-Panzerkorps was soon caught up in its aftermath, after the Red Army launched its Vienna Operation that nearly swept the armies of Heeresgruppe Süd from the battlefield.
Withdrawing into Austria, Gille’s battered corps attempted to bar the route into Germany, while the Red Army bore down on Vienna. Forced to endure relentless Soviet attacks as well as the caustic leadership of the 6. Armee commander, General Hermann Balck, the men of the IV. SS-Panzerkorps fought their way through Austria to reach the safety of the demarcation line where it finally surrendered to U.S. forces on 9 May 1945 after nearly a year of relentless campaigning.
List of Maps
List of Figures
Chapter 1: A South Wind Brings Hope
Chapter 2: Operation Spring Awakening
Chapter 3: The Defense of Stuhlweissenburg
Chapter 4: Withdrawal to the Reichsschutzstellung
Chapter 5: Defending the Reich
Chapter 6: War’s End
"For anyone with the slightest interest in the Eastern Front, this concluding volume of the trilogy of IV SS Panzer-korps is simply a must-read. Nash has done yeoman’s work in marshaling sources for this period of the war when records and record-keeping went into an abeyance, from the Lake Balaton Offensive to keeping the Hungarian oil fields." ~ARMOR Magazine
"The scholarship that went into these books is impeccable, with the author deftly weaving primary and secondary sources to form an excellent and thought provoking picture of this period in the Second World War." ~Globe at War
"The author has written a seminal triad of books on the IV SS-Panzerkorps." ~A Wargamers Needful Things
"Doug Nash has written not just one classic, but three works that stand on their own. His ability to provide academic and professional expertise to the story of the IV SS Panzer Corps is reflected in these accounts of fighting for three of Europe’s great capital cities: Warsaw, Budapest, and Vienna. Previous western accounts of World War II overlooked these inclusive events from July 1944 through May 1945. Nash graphically brings this to life with words and images with a model of the operational account." ~Charles D. Melson, Chief Historian, Retired, U.S. Marine Corps University, author of "Kleinkrieg"
"Nash has constructed a forthright chronicle of this Waffen-SS Corps going into impeccable detail on the Corps’ actions in Hungry and Austria in 1945. Each chapter of the book is filled with immense detail obtained from primary and secondary sources that is often complimented by eyewitness accounts and official correspondence. This is further supplemented with carefully considered statistical information that provides the reader with a sense of understanding of unit strengths as well as losses sustained from both sides with the corresponding second and third order effects." ~Scott Revell, author of "Retake Arnhem Bridge, Arnhem: A Few Vital Hours" and "A Piece of Coloured Ribbon".
"...this strikingly excellent series of three combat dramas on the tactical and operational levels of the German Waffen SS is the most comprehensive combined study ever written." ~ARGunners.com