Leros is a Greek island in the southern Aegean Sea, nearly 320km from Athens. Leros was the site of a fierce but brief battle in late 1943, which formed the central part of the Dodecanese Campaign. British forces had occupied Leros on 15 September 1943 in the wake of the Italian capitulation. This attracted German air attacks and a combined amphibious/airborne invasion codenamed Operation Leopard initiated on 12 November. Among the assault troops were Fallschirmjäger and an amphibious assault company from the Brandenburg Division (1./Küstenjäger-Abteilung). The Brandenburgers were an elite German special forces unit and altogether, some 500 Brandenburg parachutists dropped onto Leros. With German forces enjoying air superiority, the battle was over within four days and 3,200 British and 5,350 Italian troops surrendered. The Battle of Leros is widely regarded as being the last great defeat of the British Army in WWII.
Dragon’s latest 1/35 scale figure set features four elite German soldiers from the Brandenburg unit. These soldiers are the products of brand new toolings, and they are depicted in heavy combat with the defenders of Leros. The centerpiece of the set is a machine gun team equipped with an MG42 weapon. The gunner is using the shoulder of his assistant as a support as the team hasn’t had time to set up the weapon’s tripod yet. The folded tripod is included in the set. Meanwhile, the two other Brandenburgers dressed in appropriate camouflage smocks are preparing to move forward to capture more territory in Leros. Of interest, the set includes a German weapon container of the type that accompanied paratroopers during airdrops. This is a dramatic combat set, and of course it will prove practicable for modelers wishing to portray other battles from a similar time period in WWII.