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The Bazooka

The Bazooka Book Review

By David L. Veres

Date of Review July 2012 Title The Bazooka
Author Gordon L. Rottman Publisher Osprey Publishing
Published 2012 ISBN 9781849088015
Format 80 pages, softbound MSRP (USD) $18.95


Tanks remain among infantry’s most fearsome foes.  So how can foot soldiers best battle them?

That’s why the US Army first fielded man-portable rocket launchers – the legendary “bazooka”.  But early flaws, snags and cynics nearly slew the renowned weapon.

Gordon L. Rottman tells the whole terrifictale in The Bazooka – latest installment in Osprey’s acclaimed “Weapon” series.

Rotmann initially outlines competing concepts – anti-tank rifles, rifle-grenades, and artillery.  Some proved bulky and burdensome; others simply ineffective.

But the lightweight bazooka – etymology still obscure – fast forged repute for accuracy, ease, and effectiveness against armor at reasonable range.  Always resourceful US troops also wielded them against caves, constructions, pillboxes, and personnel – in short, against any entrenched opponent.

The author moves from early 2.36in designs through 3.5in developments.  Text traverses World War II and postwar use, clones and copies – worldwide.  And coverage concludes with the often eponymous bazooka’s impact on subsequent anti-tank weapons development.

Splendidly informative photos, captions, sidebars, and illustrations enhance this superb little study.  Glossary, bibliography, and index complete contents.  Grab this enormously entertaining effort!

Strongly recommended.

My sincere thanks to Osprey Publishing for this review sample!