Best source for the 162nd (Turkoman) Infantry Division?

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Sid Guttridge
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Best source for the 162nd (Turkoman) Infantry Division?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 26 Sep 2017 16:44

Is there any book devoted specifically to this formation?

If not, what is the best source on Turkoman units generally?

Many thanks,

Sid.

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Ironmachine
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Re: Best source for the 162nd (Turkoman) Infantry Division?

Post by Ironmachine » 26 Sep 2017 19:28

Is there any book devoted specifically to this formation?
Well, there is Hitler's Turkestani Soldiers - A History of the 162nd (Turkistan) Infantry Division by Paolo A. Dossena, published in 2016 by Helion: http://www.helion.co.uk/new-and-forthco ... ision.html
However, I have not read it, so I can say nothing about its quality.
Regards.

Sid Guttridge
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Re: Best source for the 162nd (Turkoman) Infantry Division?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 27 Sep 2017 11:59

Hi Ironmachine,

Many thanks. I have ordered it. The two reviews (such as they are) on Amazon are very mixed. I'll try and let you know what it is like.

Cheers,

Sid.

Sid Guttridge
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Posts: 5935
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Re: Best source for the 162nd (Turkoman) Infantry Division?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 02 Oct 2017 09:46

Hi Ironmachine,

This is a truly bad book. The author seems to have used the hook of the 162nd Turkoman Division to get a publisher for a whole load of revisionist waffle and irrelevant red herrings. For example, he uses Bacque and de Zayas as sources on unrelated subjects and goes on for nearly a whole page about the fate of the island of Heligoland in the North Sea after the war!

If you cut out all the stuff that is irrelevant to the division I reckon you are left with about 60 pages out of over 300 that are on subject.

If you look through these 60 notional, on-subject pages you will find no original German archival sources used at all. Indeed, one of the main sources appears to be our very own Axis History Fact Book!!! I learnt almost nothing new of value about 162nd Turkoman Division at all.

This book is a setback for historiography, because the odds of a second book on the division now being published are minimal. It has queered the pitch for other, better authors and genuine researchers.

One has to wonder whether the publisher, Helion, even bothered to read the text before publication?

Sometimes a star-rating system is inadequate. This book really merits inclusion on a black-hole rating index!

Cheers,

Sid.

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Ironmachine
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Re: Best source for the 162nd (Turkoman) Infantry Division?

Post by Ironmachine » 02 Oct 2017 10:20

Sorry for your loss of time and money.

Sid Guttridge
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Posts: 5935
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Re: Best source for the 162nd (Turkoman) Infantry Division?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 02 Oct 2017 16:07

Hi Ironmachine,

No problem. It was the best lead I had - the formation's name in the title of a book by a specialist military publisher. What could be more promising?

It is a classic case of editorial failure. A strong editor with a ruthless streak and a large machete could have saved something from the book, but editorial intervention seems to have been totally absent.

There is no point in Helion producing good looking books, with nice lay outs, comprehensive indexes, extensive footnotes and massive biographies, if the actual text is so poor.

Cheers,

Sid.

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