Multiple Authors - Mr Willem Botha, Maj Gen Roland De Vries, Lt Col Jan Ehlert, Mr William Haddad, Col (Dr) Johan ("Sarge") Nell, Brig Gen Tony Savides, Lt Col Wessie Van Der Westhuizen
VOL 1 - This two-volume book covers the history of the Ratel from the requirement for an ICV for the SA Army in the late 1960s and early 1970s through to the development, production and deployment of Ratel and to its final major combat operation of the Border War in 1989.
RATEL - The Making of a Legend VOL 1
The book is about Ratel, not about the Border War; although, obviously, elements of that conflict feature in some detail in some chapters. The book is also about those who developed and produced Ratel, those who developed the tactics and battle-handling of mechanised infantry and mechanised operations generally and, especially, those who saw combat in and with this stalwart. It also serves as a tribute to those of the mechanised forces of the SADF who paid the supreme sacrifice for South Africa while operating in Ratel and with the SADFs mechanised forces. The end of the Border War is deemed a fitting point at which to end this telling of the Ratel Story.
This book is published as a set in two volumes:
Volume 1: Origins (547 pages)
The emergence of the requirement for an ICV for the SA Army, the evaluation of contenders and the development of the Ratel 20 ICV and each of its variants. It also addresses the origins of mechanisation (or mobility) in the South African Army.
Volume 2: Life with Ratel (467 pages)
The employment of Ratel from its inception through to the end of the Border War in 1989, including. It also covers the development and evolution of the mechanised infantry doctrine and of Ratel from a basic ICV to a fully-fledged combat system. It focuses on Ratel in combat and addresses operational and related matters. It eventually tackles the question Did the Ratel ICV and the mechanised infantry doctrine work?
The two volumes of this book are complementary, each with its own approach and detail. In essence, Volume 1 is the heart of the Ratel Story; Volume 2 reflects its soul.
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