bookBlue Steel III
M-113 Carriers in Lebanon
by Moustafa El-Assad
P.O.Box: 716 Saida Lebanon

80 pages soft cover

Review by Terry Ashley

The third volume in the Blue Steel series continues to cover vehicles used by various forces in The Lebanon with the venerable M113 APC being the subject of this book.

Blue Steel 3 has 80 pages mostly in colour with the English text being basically the 2 page introduction and the picture captions with the main emphasis being again on the photos.
These are mostly larger semi-close-up shots with just two photos per page, a few pages have just one large photo and few with three making the photos large enough to see the details quite well.

A brief introduction of the M113 and their use in Lebanon is followed by 12 pages with action shots of SLA Carriers all of ex Israeli origin which feature some the IDF modifications such as the full metal standoff (Toga) plates as well as few commandeered by civilians after the collapse of the SLA. Most shots are of vehicles around the time of the SLA collapse in 2000.

The next 28 pages have close-up detail shots of a couple of the vehicles, both fitted with the armoured "doghouse" turret and raised rear hatch G5 armour panels, the photos giving some excellent details such as the Togo mounting frames and the G5 plates. There are also additional interior shots of the rear compartment showing the many additional ammo racks added and the Driver's station. One thing to note is the vehicles featured are rather "second hand" and are missing some details but those still intact show plenty of detail.

The next section has various shots of IDF vehicles with early configuration M113 as well as four pages of early Nagmashot APCs that have shots from various angles showing the details nicely plus a single shot of a Merkava I on patrol.

This is followed by 12 pages with more action shots of Lebanese Army and SLA M113s that give good overall coverage of the cam schemes, markings and uniforms of the crews as well as the terrain these vehicles operated in which would come in handy for diorama purposes.

The final 6 pages have photos of a model depicting the M113 with "doghouse" and G5 plates included in the detail photos earlier in the book.

This is a another useful book for anyone interested in the M113s of the IDF and SLA used in Lebanon with the interior shots complementing the excellent details and while some of the vehicles are in various states of disrepair there are still plenty of details shown.

Another good volume to add to the library for anyone interested the M113 operating in the Lebanon in the early 2000s.

Highly recommended 7.5/10.
Sample pages

See the website for ordering details and thanks to Moustafa El-Assad for the review copy.

Page created November 30, 2007