Germany's lightning airborne assault
Publication Date: February 5, 2005
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Osprey's study of Operation Mercury, the German airborne assault on the island of Crete in May 1941 during World War II (1939-1945), which was the first strategic use of airborne forces in history. The assault began on 20 May, with landings near the island’s key airports, and reinforcements the next day allowed the German forces to capture one end of the runway at Maleme. By 24 May, the Germans were being reinforced by air on a huge scale and on 1 June Crete surrendered. This book describes how desperately close the battle had been and explains how German losses so shocked the Führer that he never again authorised a major airborne operation.
Peter D. Antill has a background in international politics and defence studies, with a BA in International Relations from Staffordshire University and an MSc in Strategic Studies from the University College of Wales, Aberystwyth. Having worked as a Research Assistant in the Department of Defence Management and Security Analysis at Cranfield from 1998 to 2002, Peter is now pursuing a career as a writer.