The Brewster F2A Buffalo

The Buffalo originated with a 1935 requirement for a carrier-based fighter to replace the US Navy’s Grumman F3F biplanes. Brewster’s XF2A-1 prototype was selected in June 1938 and the first production aircraft began to enter service as the F2A-1 in April 1939. Slow delivery rates meant that the first squadron,…

Military History Matters 131

• The USSR at war: five battles that shaped a communist state
• The Mosquito men: the unsung heroes of 627 Squadron
• Born in blood: the fight for Irish independence
• Dunkirk: the German view
• The fight for Sweden: the Battle of Brunkeberg, 1471…

Campaigns of the Eastern Association: the rise of Oliver Cromwell, 1642-1645

REVIEW BY DAVID FLINTHAM At the outbreak of the English Civil War, Parliament organised much of its fighting strength geographically; in the case of East Anglia (eventually including Huntingdonshire and Lincolnshire) this was the Eastern Association, which would become arguably the most successful of all of Parliament’s armies in the…

Was Dunkirk really a miracle?

In a new book, Robert Kershaw argues that the lack of a German perspective means we have only a partial understanding of the events of May-June 1940. Here, he explains what his research tells us about a battle that changed the tide of the Second World War.…

The USSR at 100

There were two revolutions in Russia in 1917. In March, tens of thousands of striking workers, peasants, and soldiers — exhausted by the privations of the First World War — took to the streets of Petrograd (St Petersburg) in protest. This set in motion a chain of events that within…

Colditz: prisoners of the castle

REVIEW BY TAYLOR DOWNING Ben Macintyre is well known for his books on spies and espionage, like Agent Zigzag, Double Cross, and Philby. Earlier this year, one of his other works, Operation Mincemeat, was adapted into a hugely successful movie (see MHM June/July 2022). So I was surprised to find…

Review: Scapa Flow Museum

Scapa Flow is a vast natural harbour in the Orkneys, to the north of mainland Scotland. In the First World War, it was where the Grand Fleet was based. And in the Second it was the anchorage for the Home Fleet, therefore playing a central role in the naval history…

War Classic: Zola’s ‘The Debacle’

La Débâcle prefigures both the changing nature of warfare, and the ongoing struggle of France’s national identity. Within 22 years, another generation would be sacrificed defending their homeland.…

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