In 1939, the German Soldier went into battle armed with weapons that became legendary. Two standouts that come to mind immediately are the Luger and the Mauser 98K, which are as symbolic of the Wehrmacht as the Iron Cross. Although these venerable weapons were accurate and reliable, the development of new technology dated them by the time the war entered its third year. The Luger, instantly recognized by its romanticized silhouette, was replaced by a weapon that would would become a legacy itself - the Walther P-38. The Mauser 98K served the length of the war as the primary infantry rifle, but in the last two years semi-automatic weapons were infiltrating the arsenal of the Reich. In the end, political considerations and design obstacles would keep the Gewehr from making a serious impact in the war. The weapons of the Wehrmacht, both developed and traditional, are the focus of this section.
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