Today we're showing three pieces of artwork from our February 2024 series books! Let us know in the comments which books you'd like to see featured in our March 2024 Artwork Reveal!
By Mark Lardas
Illustrated by Edouard A. Groult
The US Navy comes calling
On February 16–17, 1945, the US Navy’s Task Force 58 conducted two days of airstrikes on Tokyo and its environs. One of the targets hit on February 16 was the largely undamaged Musashino aircraft engine factory. The Army Air Force had attempted to destroy it on six previous missions, but only slightly damaged it. This plate shows the attack by the US Navy at its climax, in the early afternoon of February 16.
The factory was attacked by 73 US Navy aircraft from three different carriers: 33 Hellcats, 30 Avengers, and ten Helldivers. There was no Japanese fighter opposition. The Navy opened the day by attacking Japanese airfields, and by noon, there were few Japanese in the air and none around Musashino. The Navy could work the place over at its leisure.
Artwork requested by Paul Williams.
By John Walter
Illustrated by Johnny Shumate and Alan Gilliland
Commanding the jungle, Burma, 1944 (overleaf)
During the campaign in Burma early in 1944, attempting to retrieve territory conquered by the
Japanese, members of a British patrol discuss crossing a fast-flowing river. Newly arrived in
the jungle, however, the men are comparatively inexperienced. Consequently, they have failed
to identify the potential threat of snipers hidden in the treetops. A Japanese soldier equipped
with a 6.5mm Type 97 sniping rifle – still widely used in 1944 owing to the limited distribution
of its 7.7mm Type 99 successor – has placed the crosshairs of his 2.5× Type 97 optical sight
on the chest of the British junior officer carrying a US-made .30 M1 Carbine for personal
defense. Like many experienced men, the sniper is well concealed thanks to his palm-frond
overjacket, and relies not only on boots with spikes to assist his climb but also on a leather
strap to hold him in place by encircling the tree-trunk.
Artwork requested by Adam Cooper
By James F. Slaughter
Illustrated by Ramiro Bujeiro
OPERATION BARBAROSSA, 1941
This scene shows an MG 34 machine-gun team in action, emplaced behind a dirt berm. The standard German machine gun in 1941, the MG 34 was manufactured until the end of World War II, although the MG 42 began to replace it from 1942 onwards. Man-portable and air-cooled, the MG 34 typically fired about 800rd/min. It could be employed in the medium or heavy role by attaching it to a tripod and could also be fitted with an optical sight. In addition, an anti-aircraft tripod was standard issue and usually carried in platoon,
company or headquarters trains; and most machine-gunners carried an anti-aircraft sight, giving German infantrymen onthe- spot defence against low-flying enemy aircraft. Two Stielhandgranaten 24 (stick grenades) and an Eihandgranate 39 (egg grenade) are at hand should close-quarter combat ensue.
Artwork requested by Daniel Figueroa Giraldez.