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Osprey New Vanguard 83: Armored Units of the Russian Civil War – White and Allied

by D Bullock and A Deryabin, illustrated by A Aksenov

Published by Osprey Publishing Ltd, ISBN 1-84176-544-9; 48 pages

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This covers an area that most of us know little about, and does it very well in a short space. A short introduction sets the scene, and then comes coverage of White Russian and Allied armoured cars during the revolution. The modifications to the British-built Austin cars are described, and there are brief notes on the other foreign cars and on those built in Russia. Then we get sections about their combat use on the various fronts, with the car units’ orders of battle in as much detail as is known – even listing the cars’ names and their makes wherever possible.

Following this is a chapter on the tanks: the British Mark V Heavy and Mediums A and B, and the French Renault FT. It is similarly organised, and just as detailed and interesting to read. Did you know that US FTs were sent to Russia, but intercepted by the Reds?

The third chapter deals with armoured trains, both White Russian and Czech (I think that many of us will have some idea of the Czech trains’ fighting in Siberia, and it is included) in the same detail. Here there is less possibility of modelling, but the text will certainly make you wish that kits were available. Two shorter final chapters deal with the colours and markings of armoured cars and trains and of tanks respectively.

Sample page

This is a great book for tank modellers, with suitable tank kits available in both 1/35 and braille scale and some Eastern European resin kits of the armoured cars as well. The photographs and colour plates will give you plenty of ideas for interesting markings! The authors promise a second volume about the Red’s use of armour, but say they have excluded the newly-independent nations that weren’t part of the Revolutionary fighting. Perhaps if we all ask very nicely Osprey will commission a book about those tanks as well?

Very highly recommended.

John Prigent

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Related books from Osprey Publishing

The Russian Civil War (1): The Red Army
(Men at Arms Series, 293)

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The Russian Civil War (2): White Armies
(Men-At-Arms Series, No 305)

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