Das Reich: The March Of The 2nd Ss Panzer Division Through France, June 1944 (Pan Military Classics Series)
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Das Reich: The March Of The 2nd Ss Panzer Division Through France, June 1944 (Pan Military Classics Series)

3.84 of 5 stars 3.84  ·  rating details  ·  184 ratings  ·  16 reviews
Within days of the D-Day lanings, the 'Das Reich' 2nd SS Panzer Division marched north through France to reinforce the front-line defenders of Hitler's Fortress Europe. Veterans of the bloodiest fighting of the Russion Front, 15,000 men with their tanks and artillery, they were hounded for every mile of their march by saboteurs of the Resistance and agents of the Allied Sp...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published August 1st 2009 by Pan Publishing (first published 1981)
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Andrew
World War II, like most significant events, has it's share of legends. There are heroes, such as the French Resistance, the British SAS, and the Allied SOE and Jedburgh teams. There are devious villains, such as the Waffen-SS men of the Das Reich division. There are daring missions behind German lines to blow up railways and gather intelligence, and there are infamous massacres in small French towns. Max Hasting's Das Reich tells the story behind these legends, or at least a very specific set of...more
Henri Moreaux
This non-fiction account follows the elite Waffen-SS division 'Das Reich' (2nd SS Panzer Division) and their notorious 1944 journey from the southern French town of Montauban to the Normandy front.

Das Reich had the ability to change the course of the war and prevent the Allies from establishing a beach head, however a combination of mismanagement, incompetence and Allied subterfuge led to Das Reich being held back in Montauban some 400+ miles away.

Once orders were finally passed down to move Da...more
Sandy Ferguson
I first read this book many years ago, and have read it many times since then!
This is one of Max Hastings early works, and it shows his willingness to engage in difficult topics and explore all of the angles. On the surface it should be an easy case of plucky heroic French resistance rising up against the evil SS committing atrocities. Hastings pulls no punches about the atrocities of the SS, but at the same time through his exploration of the politics of the Resistance, the SOE and the objectiv...more
Jeff Dawson
Das Reich

Max Hastings does a very thorough job in describing the trek of the 2nd SS Panzer Division from Southern France in an effort to help stem the allied invasion of “Fortress Europa.”

In many accounts, the effect of the Marquis is down played as an uncoordinated rabble. In this account, they are key in delaying the arrival of this battle hardened force. The destruction of the railways and communication centers aided the Allies as they scrapped and clawed to establish a strong foothold on th...more
John
Apr 25, 2008 John rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: WW2 Nuts
Das Reich: the story may be full of inaccuracies, but Hastings ties it together so well. With so much History in detail you would expect some errors and omissions.

I'd like to those who, through their own perceived intellect, find it able to sn negatively critique an excellent book. Try and write some useful yourself - useless tossers.

This book is detailed, meaty and full of interestin little-known facts.
Dachokie
a worthy read, July 14, 2009

I originally read this book years ago, but my appreciation of Max Hastings' work after reading "Armageddon" and "Retribution" gave me the urge to re-read "Das Reich". In my opinion, Hastings is a brilliant writer with an incredible ability to convey a rare, non-linear view of history ... he paints a portrait, provides voluminous detail, but allows the reader to discern his or her opinion of the facts. This is the case with "Das Reich".

The premise of the book is the j...more
John Nevola
After the Allies landed in Normandy in June of 1994, the 2nd SS Panzer Division, stationed in southern France, was ordered to move its 15,000 men and 209 tanks and self-propelled artillery 450 miles north to assist in repelling the invaders. A journey that would have taken 3 days wound up taking 15 days.

This book tells the story of the trail of horror and atrocities left in the wake of the "Das Reich" division's ruthless journey north. Assisted by Allied agents (SOE and OSS) dropped into France...more
John
I received this book as a Good Reads giveaway.
Max Hastings has a way of portraying the personal side of history while keeping it in perspective of the larger events and this book does not disappoint. In this book he does a good job of representing both sides of the event which was the Das Reich’s march through France in June 1944. While we may never know all the facts surrounding the atrocity and the skirmishes the author went to great lengths to document as many eye witness accounts as possible...more
Erik
Excellent reissue of this classic book about the famed 2nd SS Panzer Division during one horrific month in June, 1944, when they were ordered to fortify the Normandy beachhead from the confines of south France and marched north and encountered heavy French resistance. What follows is the stuff of horror - two massive massacres on French civilians in the towns of Tulle and Oradour-Sur-Glane as a means of reprisal, the likes of which have haunted history books since.

Hastings' new foreword is espe...more
David Hill
This is the story of the French resistance in the days after the Normandy invasion. Particularly as it suffered at the hands of the Das Reich as the division moved to defend against the invaders. Das Reich was in southern France in early June 1944. Once the allies landed, they were directed to the north. The maquis took several actions to delay this move and the French people paid a heavy price, including the atrocities at Oradour-sur-Glane.

Includes appendices, index, bibliography, and notes.
Matt
A very even-handed, first-class account of the march of the 2nd SS Panzer division through rural France towards the Normandy beaches in June 1944- and the efforts of the French Resistance, and a veritable alphabet soup of Allied secret agencies, to hinder their advance. This is a very informative, smartly-written, and graphic account of a little-known episode in the history of D-Day and WW2 overall.
Charlie
Could have been a really good book. But, NOT. Uneven flow. Difficult to digest. Good info though.
Went back to this book to try and understand what the author had to say. Still hard to follow but Still had good info about the 2nd SS Panzer Division that was going thru France at time of the Normandy landing.
Did not get this book thru Goodreads.com
Mark Singer
Early Max Hastings history about the brutal march of "Das Reich" 2nd SS Panzer division north through France in June 1944. The unit was sent to counter-attack the Allied invasion in Normandy, was slowed down by the SOE and Resistance fighters, and gained infamy for slaughtering 642 French civilians in the town of Oradour-sur-Glane.
Adam Johnson
Good book, lots of insite into the happenings surrounding Oradour sur Glane, not just the where how and why, but the motivation behind what is an exceptional event in the west, but an everyday event in the brutal war in the east.For those looking for a interesting take on events , good read
carl  theaker


Great read and insight into the German perspective of the divisions march
from the south of France to the D-Day beaches. A sane handling of
the Oradour-sur-Glane massacre, the whys and wheres of how
these things happen.


Charles
The compelling story of an SS Division. I found it very interesting. Hastings has a good writing style that holds your interest as well as giving you information. I have the older edition of this.
Dominic
Not just a catalogue of the events surrounding the Das Reich's march from Montauban but also an insight into the way men behave after four years of total war.
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Sir Max Hugh Macdonald Hastings, FRSL, FRHistS is a British journalist, editor, historian and author. His parents were Macdonald Hastings, a journalist and war correspondent, and Anne Scott-James, sometime editor of Harper's Bazaar.

Hastings was educated at Charterhouse School and University College, Oxford, which he left after a year.After leaving Oxford University, Max Hastings became a foreign c...more
More about Max Hastings...
Armageddon: The Battle for Germany, 1944-1945 Inferno: The World at War, 1939-1945 Overlord: D-Day and the Battle for Normandy Retribution: The Battle for Japan, 1944-45 Catastrophe 1914: Europe Goes to War

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