George M James
The Use of Armour in Covert Operations
337 pages in paperback
Code Name Devorah deals with the use of armoured fighting vehicles in unconventional warfare scenarios.
During my life, I have spoken to many South African armour officers, a breed apart and to be avoided if possible. They proudly follow something between the Russian and Prussian outlook on war. The Russians see war as a science, a mathematical exercise. The Prussians see war as an art where instinct plays a large role and the commander must have a “feeling” for the battle.
The South African Armour officers combined the two doctrines to fit their needs; they see logistics, by God, and then “élan” for lack of a better word, to create a force multiplier or what the Yanks call the “Shock and Awe Principle.”
They go in at tremendous force (the German Schwerpunkt) and without any known fear, hammering and overwhelming, destroying what they want to and leaving nasty surprises behind (long-range artillery, airstrikes, Special Forces, booby traps) and then get out and God knows when they will be back except that they will be back if needs be.
It is called destabilisation or pre-emptive strikes and it works very well in war. Have no doubt, they will always attack first and never hesitate. They studied the Israelis and everyone else in detail and they are aggressive to the point of insanity, hard charging is not really the word to describe them... they come to end the fight... end of story. One can learn from them how to use a few reinforced battalions, not divisions, to achieve astonishing results. They roam around at will and work closely with crack infantry, air support and Special Forces. I would say that their battlefield successes come down to élan, leadership and training with an utter belief, a habit, of winning at any cost payable by the enemy.
From a technical view, the South African armoured vehicles have twice the range of any comparable vehicle and all are landmine resistant. They also have comparatively higher top speeds because they are wheeled. This is by design and they have large water tanks for the crews who are able to operate them without long and vulnerable supply trains. For this theatre, they are perfect and many of the vehicles are copied worldwide by major armies because they are so outstanding.
In Code Name Devorah, I tried to bring the way armour is used in this sphere to life. But there is a twist, here the armour is used with spies and Special Forces, not conventional infantry, a unique concept in war.
Foxtrot and Angelique Dawson are happily married and their twins are almost four years old. Foxtrot considers himself to be retired from Mayhem & Murder Inc. and Angelique still consults for DGSE (the French spies). However, peace is not their occupation, not with Angelique still active in the Great Game.
Angelique’s sister-in-law, Devorah Arik, the Mossad Team Leader, returns in this book, and has her own agenda. Angelique and her security team are shanghaied into helping Mossad out in Northern Somalia.
The Antonov-124 they are on is intercepted and escorted to an abandoned airfield. Devorah wants to use their cargo for her own purposes, three Ratel Infantry Fighting Vehicles, two of which are of the 90-mm tank hunter variety. Both Geoffrey Foxtrot and Geelslang Peter Ndebele are experts in using such vehicles in combat and have done so before. Angelique is also not unskilled in armour warfare. They are soon clashing with two T-55 tanks and terrorists, and even the twins are at risk. Foxtrot and Geelslang have their hands full to keep everyone safe.
If you wish to read about Covert and Special Forces Operations in sub-Saharan Africa, the GMJ Books are the place to start. You will learn about covert operations, Special Forces techniques and military history not known outside the select few.
This is book 11 of the popular GMJ Series.