Posts Tagged ‘Osprey Publishing’

Osprey Elite 220 – European Counter-Terrorist Units 1972-2017

Friday, November 3rd, 2017

I’ve collected Osprey books for over 30 years. They remain some of my best historical reference material, in particular because of the excellent artist plates in each volume.

One of their latest releases is “Elite 220: European Counter-Terrorist Units 1972-2017” which examines the evolution and growth of both Mil and LE organizations devoted specifically with the CT mission.


At only 64-pages, the volume doesn’t go into great detail but it does offer the highlights. Beginning with 1972’s tragedy at the Olympic Village in Munich, author Leigh Neville then examines how the threat has changed. Next, he discusses technical innovations such as the use of specialized vehicles and then he delves into the units themselves. By country, Neville basic order of battle and highlights specific operations. These are accompanied by photographs as well as some top notch work by illustrator Adam Hook.


The artist plates are very well researched. Take for instance the image above which showcases (l-r) British 22 SAS, French GIGN and London Metropolitan Police SCO19. The image is so up-to-date with 2017 that it has the GIGN member in Arc’teryx coveralls, a recent acquisition of that team’s kit bag.

Not only do I highly recommend the Osprey series, but in particular those works by Leigh Neville. His dedication to accuracy is admirable.

Via Amazon,

Osprey Elite 216 – Vietnam War US & Allied Combat Equipments

Thursday, February 2nd, 2017

I own quite a library of reference books and some of my favorites are from Osprey Publishing. Last week they released Osprey Elite 216, “Vietnam War US & Allied Combat Equipments” by Gordon L Rottman and illustrated by Adam Hook. In my collection, I’ve got books going back to the 80s by Rottman and it’s great to see him still in the game.

Right off the bat, I’ll acknowledge that this selection isn’t the definitive work on the subject. This is mainly due to the format of the Elite Series. However, while there are several other in-depth works on Vietnam-era load Carriage out there, “Vietnam War US & Allied Combat Equipments” is a welcome addition to my library. 

For one thing, it covers both US and Allied gear in one volume. In fact, they’ve packed a whole lot of information in these 64 pages. If you need a quick reference for mid-century load carrying gear (including specialist items), this is the one to get. They are all there; M1956, early-war M-1961 USMC Load Carriage, M-1967 (Army and USMC variants), LINCLOE, SF-specific items, and ANZAC Systems (’37 and ’44 pattern webbing) as well as indigenous systems used by RVN forces. What’s more, packs, shelters and sleep systems are also accounted for.

Additionally, the author and illustrator do a great job of offering multiple views of the equipment. Not only do they offer period photos of the items in use, but they supplement this with studio shots of artifacts for comparison. The icing on the cake is the series of excellent illustrations which bring the gear to life.

One thing I wish Osprey would do is offer up the artwork from their books as order on demand prints. They’d make great artwork for mancaves as well as going away gifts for military units.

You can order your copy from

Osprey Publishing Relaunches ‘Combat Aircraft’ Series

Sunday, March 22nd, 2015

Osprey has been publishing indispensable reference books for decades and now they are revamping the look of both the ‘Aircraft of Aces’ and ‘Combat Aircraft’ series.   One I am looking forward to is this latest study of A-10 use in Operation Enduring Freedom.