- ISBN/SKU: 9781591147442
- Binding: Hardcover and eBook
- Era: WWII
- Number of Pages: 512
- Subject: History
- Date Available: October 2010
In April 1945 the American 71st Infantry Division exacted the final vestiges of life from the Reich's 6th SS Mountain Division in central Germany. This analysis of the battle demonstrates that the Wehrmacht's last gasp on the Western Front was anything but a whimper, as some historians charge. Instead, Stephen Rusiecki argues, the Wehrmacht fought to extract every last bit of pain possible. The book follows the histories of both the German and American divisions from their inception until their fateful confrontation in April 1945 and serves as a testament to the human experience in war, both from the perspective of the soldiers and from the civilians who suffered the brunt of the fighting.
This book is published in cooperation with the Association of the U.S. Army.
Lt. Col. Stephen M. Rusiecki, USA (Ret.), is Dean of Academics and Deputy Commandant of the U.S. Army Inspector General School at Fort Belvoir, VA. A resident of Dumfries, VA., he is also the author The Key to the Bulge: The Battle for Losheimergraben.
Praise for In Final Defense of the Reich
“In Final Defense of the Reich is dispassionate, painstaking, and compelling. 'The fighting continued to be brutal and violent until the bitter end' (355), and Rusiecki recounts this with concern and respect for the ordinary soldiers involved. Tightly constructed, rigorously researched, and tautly written, this is a fine example of military history written in the classic style.”
— German Studies Review
“Rusieki has done a superb job in bringing order out of a chaotic few days of battle. This well-written book is an excellent addition to the literature of the closing days of the war in Europe.”
— The Journal of America’s Military Past, Fall 2011