Welcome to Cold War Gamer, a blog I am using to record my Cold War wargaming projects. These range from fictitious Cold War hot projects to historical conflicts that took place around the globe throughout the Cold War era, all modelled and gamed in 20mm. The blog includes links to various resources useful to the Cold War Gamer.

My current projects include: Central Front; British & Soviet. South African Border War; Angolans and South Africans. Soviet Afghan War; Soviets and Afghans

Friday, 19 October 2012

Review - Books, Weapons and Tactics of The Soviet Army, Isbey


One of the definitive texts for the cold war gamer, everything you ever wanted to know about the Soviets and more. My Gran bought me my first copy way back in the early 80s the one to go for however is this one the revised 1988 reprint. I bought mine a couple of years ago when I first started getting into cold war and at that time it was a snip at £40 second hand. Sadly these days if you can find one below £100 you are doing well.


It covers the space of FM 100-2-1, 2-2 and 2-3 but with better pictures a clearer text and an elegant approach to detailing task organisation that builds units from there components. It Covers the broad structure of the Soviet Army its Doctrine in terms of Offence and defence, and reviews this against operational performance in a number of conflicts.


David then goes onto examine supporting functions before examining the principal classes of weapon systems within the context of their arm of service, detailed organisation and tactical deployment, A style which I find highly useful. A brilliant book which I have been reading for the best part of 30 years and despite the internet and all the great books you can access through it, that you never knew existed before, it remains one of the core texts on the Soviet Army, staggering in both its detail and accuracy given the time it was written at effectively the height of the cold war.


David Isby is a military analyst and a bit of a global expert on defence and security he has written extensively on the cold war and soviet operations in afghanistan. He is also a man with an extensive background in war games and games design working for a number of years for SPI on Strategy and Tactics magazine.


all up this is an excellent book and one I would not be without if you can find one at a decent price grab it.

Weapons and Tactics of the Soviet Army @ amazon

Other Book Reviews

Soviet Air Land Battle Tactics
The Military Balance
Encyclopaedia of the Modern British Army
The Soviet Conduct of Tactical Manoeuvre
First Clash
The Third World War
The British Army in Germany

The Cold War Bookstore contains links to over 60 Cold War titles covered in my book list




  1. A fabulous book! Mine isn't even the updated version but I still treasure it.

  2. hmm an interesting book by the sounds of it, may look out for it. but if it is over $100 it is a no no for my buget.

  3. Just got a copy for €6 including shipping! Hurrah!