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I can no longer sit back and allow
Communist infiltration, Communist indoctrination,
Communist subversion, and the International Communist conspiracy to
sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids.
General Jack Ripper
Dr. Strangelove 1963

Imagining World War III in Europe

Arguing for one’s ideas regarding tomorrow’s warfare through narrative fiction is a time-honored tactic among defense futurists. Hector Bywater’s 1925 novel The Great Pacific War, which was remarkably (though not perfectly) accurate in describing World War II in the Pacific 15 years later. What is not as well-known is that Bywater, a top naval writer of his time wrote a nonfiction book in 1921 called Sea Power in the Pacific that described much of his views.

Sir John Hackett’s superb book from 1978, The Third World War, with the assistance from numerous military and civilian experts, foretold the beginning and conduct of World War III — starting in 1985. Readers knew it was fiction, but the details within the book made it seem so incredibly real. It was a powerful book, -- it's little known now. Hackett, a retired British Army general officer, was aided in the writing of his novel by other retired NATO officers.

The Third World War: August 1985 is a thought-provoking work by retired British General Sir John Hackett and an advisory team of experts. Hackett’s purpose was to present his thesis that the only alternative to a nuclear holocaust in World War III is for the West to be prepared adequately to wage the most advanced conventional war against the Soviet Union and its satellites. To dramatize his argument, Hackett constructed a detailed account of a hypothetical three-week war between West and East erupting and ending in August 1985. In that war, a West much more powerful in conventional weapons and armed forces than are the United States and Europe today just barely manages to bring the Soviet onslaught to a halt. The Soviet Union’s failure to achieve victory swiftly triggers its disintegration.

One chapter, dedicated entirely to Ireland, has the Republic joining the war effort after a gradual pre-war withdrawal from neutralism based in part on her membership of the EEC, and in part on a Franco-Irish defense pact concluded well before the outbreak of hostilities. According to Hackett, Irish facilities would be important: "The use of Shannon and west coast sites , was vital for maritime operations in the Atlantic; availability of Irish airfields and ports was essential for the successful operation of the Atlantic 'air bridge' reinforcement operations into France and Britain for the European front; and the deployment of mobile radar and other surveillance systems would give much needed depth to NATO's air defence against Sovie% attack, by sea or air, from the West."

In Hackett's second offering, "Third World War: The Untold Story", a Soviet incursion into Yugoslavia in July 1985 is blunted by defeat at the hands of the U.S. Marine Corps, an incident publicized worldwide. This embarrassment accelerates the Soviet decision to invade and conquer West Germany, the Benelux nations, Scandinavia, and south-central Europe, and to gain control of the Dardanelles—in ten days, according to plan—and then call for negotiations with the United States from a position of strength. The Warsaw Pact forces advancing into West Germany meet with greater than expected resistance and are brought to a virtual standstill far short of their objective, the Rhine River. Mounting allied counterattacks, the defection of some satellite and even Russian military units, and anti-Soviet partisan operations behind the lines compel Soviet retreats in West Germany.

In a last-ditch effort to frighten the West into negotiations, the Russians explode a nuclear missile over Birmingham, England, devastating that city. In retaliation, four American and British nuclear missiles destroy Minsk, the capital of Byelorussia. With disorganization and revolt in the Soviet sphere increasing rapidly, Ukrainian nationalists seize control of the Russian Politburo, and the Ukraine and other Soviet constituent republics declare their national independence. The threat to the West from the Soviet Union ended.

John Skow, one of Time magazine’s regular contributors, for instance. He denigrated the thrust of Hackett’s first book as merely a request to support "our local military-industrial complex." He dismisses the theme of the new book in similar terms: it is "to trust the West’s stalwart military men and give them whatever costly whizbangs they ask for." Skow accuses the author of galling "Blimpish prejudice," "a tone of righteous contempt," "lip-smacking language," and making the "military mind seem demented."

The locale "First Clash: Combat Close-Up in World War Three", by Kenneth Macksey is West Germany during the opening days of World War III. At face value, the book might appear to be similar to General Sir John Hackett's The Third World War, August 1985, but First Clash concentrates on warfare as seen by tankers and infantrymen at the platoon, company, and battalion level. He writes in vivid detail of their anxiety at what awaits them during deployment and as they take up battle positions prior to being probed by reconnaissance elements of the Soviet 1st Guards Tank Division.

When the heat of the main battle is described in vivid detail, the reader feels as if he is there in person. First Clash also puts in perspective the command pressuresfor success placed on both the defenders and the attackers, both through theeyesand thoughtsof the men fighting and dying, as well as from the standpoint of officers commanding the units engaged. The book is filled with photos taken during actual field exercises. It also capsulizes key leadership and tactical lessons, which are worthwhile for commanders and staff officers to take note of.

RedStorm Rising is the story of World War III in Europe and the Atlantic. The entire novel is reminiscent of Sir John Hackett's opening chapters in The Third World War, August 1985. Red Storm Rising, though, was one of the best war novels to come out in the past twenty years. Clancy didn't claim to be predicting anything; he simply was telling a story.

The reader of this book sees the war through the eyes of the intelligence officer, the pilot of a STEALTH F-19, the submarine captain, an isolated US Air Force lieutenant on an invaded Iceland. a US Navy frigate captain, the platoon leader in the 1 1 th Armored Cavalry Regiment, and SACEUR. But there is also get the other side. From the highest levels of Soviet political leadership to the commanders of Soviet airborne and tank divisions, the opening weeks of World War III play out. The action is fast-paced and real.

Clancy recreates the tension of waiting for a Soviet regimental attack and the action that results within the turret of the M1. We live through the stress faced by seamen in the combat information centers on board both our nuclear submarines and our surface action ships. We learn what it's like to attack across the Inter-German border at treetop level in the dark of night inside the super-secret F-19 STEALTH aircraft.

World War III was a classic cold war movie /miniseries made in 1982. When starving mobs begin rioting in the streets of Moscow, Soviet leaders believe they have no recourse but to seize the Alaskan pipeline to force the United States to end the grain embargo that has brought turmoil to the U.S.S.R. These are the events, so terrifyingly similar to yesterday’s headlines that bring the superpowers to the brink of World War III. Starring Brian Keith in an extraordinary performance as the Soviet Secretary-General and Rock Hudson as the beleaguered American President, World War III is suspense and intrigue in epic proportions. From a lonely battleground at an Alaskan valve station to the inner sanctums of world power, World War III brings the worst fears of humankind to the screen with an intensity that is all the more nightmarish because is it so believably real.

Six short novels were published in the Tales of World War III: 1985 series. The books contained in this bundle cover various characters and settings in a mid-80s war-that-never-was between NATO and the Warsaw Pact. Circles of Damage: The 4th Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group faces off against a determined Soviet tank regiment commander on a vital mission. Storm Scarred Banner: Norway is invaded by the Soviet Union on the first day of the war. Two young men on opposite sides of the conflict must come to terms with the reality that confronts them.

A Hollow Victory: A Polish airborne and Soviet amphibious invasion in Denmark forces the country to surrender but resistance within the country builds as the occupation brutally attempts to suppress dissent. Enemy Lines: A US Special Forces team operating behind enemy lines is sent on a series of missions that could sway the outcome of the war in the Central European theater. The Battle for Berlin: The Special Emergency Commando unit is assigned the impossible task of defending West Berlin from the East Germans. Can the team survive both betrayal and bloodshed? Harrier Air War: 1985: With most of NATO's airbases damaged or destroyed, a flight of Harrier pilots conducts a guerilla-style air war on the first day of the conflict.

Each book is approximately 20,000 to 30,000 words in length. The stories are based both on research and scenarios played out in wargames. They are written primarily for audiences who enjoy reading fast and fun military action.

In The Red Tide, book #1 by Harry Kellogg, the attack takes place a good year later in August of 1946, postulating that Stalin continued to keep his troops in Europe and armed rather than what he historically did. On the border of West Germany; Stalin has 60 mechanized divisions, composed of the battle hardened veterans. The US and Britain have demobilized their armies. Britain is bankrupt and rationing bread. Its empire is crumbling and its colonies are in revolt. Tens of thousands of USAAF and RAF planes have been dumped into the ocean, pushed into piles, crushed and left rotting in jungles around the world.

As a result much of the Allied infrastructure has already been converted back over to civilian construction and many of the best personnel have been discharged. These books are not written in any traditional style but is a combination of historical facts, oral histories, third person and first person accounts. They were inspired by "The Good War": An Oral History of World War Two (1984 in literature) by Studs Terkel and Cornelius Ryan's wonderful books "The Longest Day" and "A Bridge too Far". There is no hero or character development.

Over the years, the NATO Allies beefed up their ground capability, while the Soviets increased their air capability, even as the new jet and missile age began. The focal point of conflict remained in Germany — specifically the flat North German Plain and the Fulda Gap — through which the Soviets could pour all the way to the Channel if the Allies proved unprepared (or unable) to stop them.

Even if the Soviets were to succeed inoccupying much of West Germany in a short campaign, most of Europe's economic strength would be available to the alliance if the allies managed to hold at the Rhine. Indeed, West Germany east of the Rhine would be largely devastated and of little industrial benefit to the Soviet Union. Even if Europe west of the Rhine suffered economic losses (or were also lost), the U.S. would have access to Japan's economic and technological strength, which was second only to the US's own. A long-war strategy would pit U.S. strength against Soviet weaknesses — the potential capability of the US and its allies to wage a protracted war against an economically, industrially, and technologically inferior foe.

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Page last modified: 01-05-2019 18:50:55 ZULU