The Photos are of the T55 & Tiran (both T54/T55 based) tanks used by the South Lebanese Army, which the author explains ceased to exist by 24th May 2000. In addition there are unique photographs of T55/Tiran's converted to Armoured Personnel Carriers. Two versions are shown, one turreted conversion, and one with turret removed.
For many the most interesting pictures will be of the Tirans used by the SLA that have Blazer add on armour fitting points, one of these is shown in the process of being converted to an APC. For others the pictures showing additional belly armour, and individual crews personal modifications on Tirans will be the highlight. In addition there are a few pictures in the book showing M3 halftrack and M113 Zelda.
The book not only includes high quality photographs of actual tanks (mostly taken by the author, with some taken by Sampo Mikkola & Thord Wedman, both of whom were soldiers serving in Southern Lebanon), it also includes photographs of highly detailed models by Jorge Lopez (Tiran), and Moustafa El-Assad (Turreted APC). Personally I love this book. It has sufficient information in it to enable me to do some really interesting conversions on the Tamiya T55 kit, or any other base kit (with lots more work).
The photographs are sharp and clear with no exceptions, and I have never seen any of them before, (and if they were in a book or on the net then I surely would have!) The book is not just pictures however, it includes a concise yet informative section on the usage of the tanks by the SLA, which was a really interesting read for me, it also has high quality illustrations by Roberto Flores-Yoldi, who is a skilled artist.
The book took just under a week to get here from Lebanon (I live in UK). I paid for the book by paypal, including p p and charges from my card company it cost me just over £18.00.
It will keep me happy for years to come, in the space of an evening I have found out many more things about the T55 series of tanks.
If you can, buy this book, if you can’t, then borrow money to buy it, you won’t regret it.
Blue Steel – T55 Tanks in South Lebanon – A First Impression Review
By Moustafa El-Assad, PO Box 716, Saida, Lebanon. www.blue-steel.info costs about £18.00 p p included to UK.
72 pages, A4 size, soft bound, printed on high quality paper with card covers, 218 photos, most in colour, many 2 per page, some full page.
This is a must have book for T54/55/Tiran enthusiasts.It contains unique photographs taken by the author and others of Armored Personnel Carrier versions used by the South Lebanon Army.