The Chaco War, 1932-1935

Fighting in Green Hell

Antonio Luis Sapienza, José Luis Martínez Peláez

This book provides an indispensable, single-point-source-of-reference for enthusiasts and professionals alike.
Date Published :
August 2020
Publisher :
Helion and Company
Series :
Latin America@War
Illustration :
246 b/w photos, 9 color profiles, 4 color figures, 11 color & 3 b/w maps
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Paperback
ISBN : 9781913118730
Pages : 72
Dimensions : 11.75 X 8.25 inches
Stock Status : Available


The Chaco War was the first modern conflict in South America. Over time, it became the topic of many volumes published in both Bolivia and Paraguay – first by veterans, such as the commanders-in-chief, and the commanders of army corps’, regiments or battalions, and by other ranks, in the form of personal memoirs or wider histories, and using a wide variety of sources. Subsequently, the conflict attracted attention of many foreign writers, foremost from the United States of America and Europe, who researched it with great interest. Hundreds of related articles have also been published.

Nevertheless, The Chaco War, 1932-1935 is the first ever concise history of this conflict, providing the reader with the full background to this conflict, the military build-up of the Bolivian and Paraguayan armed forces, a blow-by-blow account of Bolivian penetration of this territory since the early 20th Century, precise details on troops mobilized for the war by both sides, all of the battles fought between the belligerents, and their casualties.

Two very different military concepts faced each other: the German General Hans Kundt, a First World War veteran, hired by the Bolivian Government, was a proponent of the typical Prussian tactics of front attacks regardless of cost, but also of the strategy of taking and controlling as much territory as possible without annihilating the enemy.

The Paraguayan Lieutenant-Colonel José Felix Estigarribia (later promoted to Colonel, and then General), took his specialization courses in Chile and France, and was a proponent of tactics of using trench warfare for defense, and flanking the enemy when in the offensive.

Eventually, Estigarribia’s ideas proved their worth – partially because his forces managed to capture huge stocks of Bolivian arms and ammunition throughout the war.

This is also the first book to provide an exclusive collection of photographs from the archives of the Institute of History and Military Museum of Ministry of National Defence of Paraguay, and several private archives in Paraguay and Bolivia.

Perfectly complementing the earlier volume The Chaco Air War of the Latin America@War series, The Chaco War, 1932-1935 provides an indispensable, single-point-source-of-reference for enthusiasts and professionals alike.

About The Author

Antonio Luis Sapienza Fracchia was born in Asunción, Paraguay on 14th May 1960. He graduated from the Catholic University of Asunción where he got a B.A. in Clinical Psychology. He also took specialized English courses at Tulane University of New Orleans, Louisiana, USA and San Diego State University in California. He is at present an English Teacher and one of the Academic Coordinators at the Centro Cultural Paraguayo-Americano (CCPA), a binational institute in Asunción. Married with two children, he resides in the capital. In his function as an aviation historian, Sapienza became a founding member of the Instituto Paraguayo de Historia Aeronáutica “Silvio Pettirossi”, and wrote more than 500 related articles for specialised press around the world. Sapienza has received five decorations for his academic merits, and published eleven books. This is his third instalment for Helion.

José Luis Martínez Peláez was born in Asuncion in 1955. He graduated from the Catholic University of Asuncion where he obtained a B.A. in Business Administration. He worked in a bank for 33 years and is now a rancher and an active member of the Rural Association of Paraguay. For many years he has researched Paraguayan military history, especially the Chaco War. He has frequently lectured on that topic in a number of institutions and has published a book on the myths in that conflict. This is his first book for Helion.


"...there are plenty of pictures interspersed for those of us who enjoy visual references in addition to reading the typed word."


"Highly recommended."

- AMPS Indianapolis

"Robustly recommended!"

- Cybermodeler

"If you want to learn about this conflict, then this is a great book for you."

- ModelingMadness.Com

"This book will give the reader a good understanding of the History of this little known conflict. Despite many books and articles over the years from Foreign historians this is the first book from a local author who has researched the conflict with extensive access to local personal and private archives and this shows. Highly recommended."


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