The Panzerkampfwagen III Panzer III was one of the German army’s principal tanks of the Second World War, yet its history is often overlooked in comparison to its more famous successors the Panzer IV, Panther and Tiger. Anthony Tucker-Jones, in this volume in the Images of War series, provides a visual account of the tank in over 150 wartime photographs and describes in a concise text its development and operational history. The Panzer III was designed as part of Hitlers re-armarment programme in the mid-1930’s and played a key role in the German blitzkrieg offensives in Poland, France and the Soviet Union. Although it lacked adequate firepower and could not match more advanced Allied tanks like the T-34, it stayed in service in North Africa and on the Eastern Front and it was still encountered in action in Normandy towards the end of the war. Its reliable chassis was also adapted for assault gun production. In this form, as the Sturmgeschtz III, it took part in the defensive battles fought by the Wehrmacht as it retreated in Italy, France and eastern Europe.
IMAGES OF WAR: PANZER III Hitler’s Beast of Burden
Anthony Tucker-Jones’s selection of photographs show the Panzer III in every theatre of the war and at every stage, and his text gives an insight into the design history and fighting performance of this historic armoured vehicle.