One of the most infamous of all Waffen-SS formations, the 3rd SS-Panzer-Division ?otenkopf?has always been identified as the very essence of the notorious ?lack Order.?Associated with war crimes in official historiography, formed initially with personnel coming from guard units from concentration camps, the unit was nevertheless able to prove itself on the battlefield, distinguishing itself in all of the main campaigns in which it fought, from France to the Russian front. This second of two volumes analyzes the summer 1943 campaign that followed Kursk, until the end of the war: from its operations on the Mius front, to the fighting in the Kharkov area, on the Dnieper River, its transfer to the Polish front, and its subordination to IV.SS-Panzer-Korps, the fighting on the Hungarian front to liberate Budapest, and then its participation in the Fr?lingserwachen (?pring Awakening? offensive, until the final fighting in Austria and the surrender. The volume includes a series of appendices covering order of battle, lists of award recipients, and details of uniforms and insignia pertaining to the division.
Massimiliano Afiero was born in Afragola (Naples Province) in 1964. An information technology teacher and programmer, he has been interested in military history since his youth, specializing in the history of Axis units during the Second World War and particularly in the Waffen-SS. He has published numerous articles in the principal Italian-language history magazines and has contributed to many military history web sites. He is one of the few Italian historical researchers to have personally interviewed many veterans of the Waffen-SS, publishing their previously unpublished stories. He has published numerous books dealing with foreign volunteers in the German armed forces during the Second World War. From November 2004 to December 2008 he was the historical consultant and Technical Director of the magazine Volontari (Marvia Edizioni). Since May 2008 he has been Editor-in-Chief of the bimonthly magazine SGM (Seconda Guerra Mondiale) published by Editoriale Lupo. In January 2009, he began publication of a new magazine, Ritterkreuz, dedicated to the military history of Axis units during the Second World war. Since 2013, he has also managed the publication of the Fronti di Guerra series, also dedicated to the Second World War.

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