The Atlantic Wall (3) - The Südwall, Steven J. Zaloga

The Atlantic Wall (3) - The Südwall, Steven J. Zaloga

Fortress: 109

The 'Sudwall' is the lesser known Mediterranean equivalent of the Atlantic Wall, and was part of the long line of fortifications that the Germans built around the coast of occupied Europe in an attempt to stop any Allied invasion. The Sudwall covered the south coast of France and part of the north-western coast of Italy, but wasn't as strong as the better known northern French part of the wall, and had gaps where mountains reached the coast.

This book provides a fairly comprehensive look at these defences. We start with a look at the framework behind the development of the defences – events early in the war, the various bodies that designed them, the type of defensive structures being built. This is followed by a tour of the defences, working along the coast to see what was planned, what was built, what is was armed with and who garrisoned it. Finally there is an account of their impact on Operation Dragoon and the fighting that came after it. The Allies were able to avoid the strongest positions on D-Day in the south, but some did play a part in later battles, as the Allies cleared up along the coast.

This is a useful examination of this part of the German fortification system, and helps demonstrate just how much effort was put into building a defensive system that in the end proved to be ineffective.

Design and Development
The Principles of Defense
Tour of the Sites
The Living Site
Operational History
The Sites Today
Further Reading

Author: Steven J. Zaloga
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 64
Publisher: Osprey
Year: 2015

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