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  1. #1
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    Dec 2008
    Thanked 2,231 Times in 687 Posts

    Special Weapons and Types of Warfare

    At the end of World War 2 the UK Service Ministries commissioned the writing of 'administrative histories'(1) on specific subject areas likely to be of use in future conflicts. The volumes produced were associated with the Official History of the Second World War but, unlike the operational and civil series of volumes, were classified and not available for purchase by the public(2). In recent years some of these administrative histories have found their way onto the second-hand book market. My favourite Army history is a three volume set called 'Special Weapons and Types of Warfare' and I have been lucky enough to have Volumes 2 and 3 for many years. A personal copy of Volume 1(3) has eluded me despite the usual forays into Abe-books and eBay; until last week that is when I tripped over the latest catalogue from The Naval and Military Press to discover that they had just reproduced all three volumes using a 'master' held at the Royal Armouries, Leeds. Volume 1 arrived today and it is a very faithful reproduction with a soft (Perfect) binding. The photographs are particularly good. My only criticism is that a hardback option was not available but I might sort that out using a local bookbinder.

    The N&M volumes are pricey at £38 each but they contain a great deal of information as shown in the chapter titles below.

    Special Weapons and Warfare was largely compiled by Lt Col Wiseman from work of the staff at Porton Down:
    Volume 1 deals with Gas Warfare:
    Chapter 1 - Policy
    Chapter 2 - Organisation
    Chapter 3 - The War Gases
    Chapter 4 - Gas Weapons
    Chapter 5 - Employment of Gas and Tactical Doctrine
    Chapter 6 - Defensive Equipment
    Chapter 7 - Gas Training
    Chapter 8 - Development in Enemy Countries

    Volume 2 deals with Smoke, Flame and Insecticides
    Chapter 9 -
    Chapter 10 - Smoke Materials, Weapons and Appliances
    Chapter 11 - AA Smoke Screening
    Chapter 12 - Tactical Smoke Screening
    Chapter 13 - AA and Large Scale Tactical Screening
    Chapter 14 - Smoke Training
    Chapter 15 - Feasible Uses of Smoke Not Resorted to Operationally
    Chapter 16 - Axis Smoke Development
    Chapter 17 - Signal Smokes and Flares
    Chapter 18 - Flame Warfare Introductory
    Chapter 19 - Development (Flame Warfare)

    Chapter 20 - Operational Success

    Chapter 21 - Effect of Flame and Defence Against It

    Chapter 22 - Training (Flame Warfare)

    Chapter 23 - Development of Flame Warfare in Germany, Japan and Russia

    Chapter 24 - Incendiary Projectiles
    Chapter 25 - Insecticides and Insect Repellants
    Chapter 26 - Special and Common User Equipment (Including I.R.)
    Chapter 27 - Jungle Equipment

    Volume 3 deal with Visual and Sonic Warfare
    Chapter 28 - Introductory
    Chapter 29 - Routine Concealment and Disguise
    Chapter 30 - Tactical Deception
    Chapter 31 - Decoys
    Chapter 32 - Sonic Warfare
    Chapter 33 - Organisation for Visual Warfare
    Chapter 34 - Training
    Chapter 35 - Enemy Development

    (1) sometimes referred to as 'Staff Histories' or Monographs.
    (2) the Royal Navy's 'War with Japan' is an example of an exception but it was not published until 1995
    (3) only 375 copies were printed
    Last edited by Bonnex; 10th March 2018 at 02:07 PM.

  2. The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to Bonnex For This Useful Post:

    1989rjb (10th March 2018), AE501 (10th March 2018), HAZORD (10th March 2018), millsbomber (10th March 2018), Millsman (12th March 2018), paul the grenade (10th March 2018), peteblight (10th March 2018), siegfreid (10th March 2018)

  3. #2
    Premium Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Thanked 827 Times in 305 Posts
    N. Thanks for posting that . I'd never even seen Vol. 1 . i think it may be more than slightly relevant at this time..........




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