This is a day-by-day account of the eighty-day struggle in 1940 between Hitler--poised on the edge of absolute victory--and Churchill--threatened by imminent invasion and defeat--on the eve of the second World War.
"A masterful book--masterful in its portrayal of its protagonists, masterful in its overall understanding of the death-struggle in which they engaged, masterful, above all, in its vivid, suspenseful chronicling of the most momentous eighty days in the history of this century." --Geoffrey Ward
"This is a marvelous book. John Lukacs has lucid, unsentimental insight into the mind and character of both Churchill and Hitler." --Conor Cruise O'Brien
"A wonderful story wonderfully told." --George F. Will
"It is salutary to be reminded in this powerful study how close Hitler came to winning in 1940. . . . An impressive study . . . written] with elegance and panache." --Peter Stansky, New York Times
"A master of narrative history on a par with Barbara Tuchman and Garrett Mattingly." --Kirkus Reviews
Challenging previous accounts, Geoffrey Megargee shatters the myth that German generals would have prevailed in World War II if only Hitler had not meddled in their affairs. Indeed, Megargee argues, the German high command was much more flawed than many have suspected or acknowledged. Inside Hitler's High Command reveals that while Hitler was the central figure in many military decisions, his generals were equal partners in Germany's catastrophic defeat.Megargee exposes the structure, processes, and personalities that governed the Third Reich's military decision making and shows how Germany's presumed battlefield superiority was undermined by poor strategic and operational planning at the highest levels. His study tracks the evolution of German military leadership under the Nazis from 1933 to 1945 and expands our understanding of the balance of power within the high command, the role of personalities in its organizational development, and the influence of German military intellectuals on its structure and function. He also shows how the organization of the high command was plagued by ambition, stubbornness, political intrigue, and overworked staff officers. And his "a week in the life" chapter puts the high command under a magnifying glass to reveal its inner workings during the fierce fighting on the Russian Front in December 1941. Megargee also offers new insights into the high command crises of 1938 and shows how German general staff made fatal mistakes in their planning for Operation Barbarossa in 1941. Their arrogant dismissal of the Soviet military's ability to defend its homeland and virtual disregard for the extensive intelligence and sound logistics that undergird successful large-scale military campaigns ultimately came back to haunt them. In the final assessment, observes Megargee, the generals' strategic ideas were no better than Hitler's and often worse. Heinz Guderian, Franz Halder, and the rest were as guilty of self-deception as their Fuhrer, believing that innate German superiority and strength of will were enough to overcome nearly any obstacle. Inside Hitler's High Command exposes these surprising flaws and illuminates the process of strategy and decision making in the Third Reich.
As plans got under way for the Allied invasion of Sicily in June 1943, British counter-intelligence agent Ewen Montagu masterminded a scheme to mislead the Germans into thinking the next landing would occur in Greece. The innovative plot was so successful that the Germans moved some of their forces away from Sicily, and two weeks into the real invasion still expected an attack in Greece. This extraordinary operation called for a dead body, dressed as a Royal Marine officer and carrying false information about a pending Allied invasion of Greece, to wash up on a Spanish shore near the town of a known Nazi agent.
Agent Montagu tells the story as only an insider could, offering fascinating details of the difficulties involved--especially in creating a persona for a man who never was--and of his profession as a spy and the risks involved in mounting such a complex operation. Failure could have had devastating results. Success, however, brought a decided change in the course of the war.
With charm, humor, and deep understanding, a Japanese American woman tells how it was to grow up on Seattle's waterfront in the 1930s and to be subjected to "relocation" dring World War II. Along with some 120,000 other persons of Japanese ancestry--77,000 of whom were U.S. citizens--she and her family were uprooted from their home and imprisoned in a camp. In this book, first published in 1952, she provides a unique personal account of these experiences.
Replaced by ISBN 9780295993553
On April 21, 1945, the twelve-member crew of the Black Cat set off on one of the last air missions in the European theater of World War II. Ten never came back. This is the story of that crew--where they came from, how they trained, what it was like to fly a B-24 through enemy flak, and who was waiting for them to come home.Historian Thomas Childers, nephew of the Black Cat's radio operator, has reconstructed the lives and tragic deaths of these men through their letters home and through in-depth interviews, both with their families and with German villagers who lived near the crash site. In so doing he unearths confusion about the exact number of crash survivors and ugly rumors of their fate at the hands of the German villagers. His search to determine what really happened leads him to the crash site outside of Regensburg to lay the mystery to rest.In the tradition of Young Men and Fire, Wings of Morning is history as commemoration-an evocation of people and events that brings to life a story of love, loss, and a family's quest for truth.
In February 1945, American Marines plunged into the surf at Iwo Jima--and into history. Through a hail of machine-gun and mortar fire that left the beaches strewn with comrades, they battled to the island's highest peak. And after climbing through a landscape of hell itself, they raised a flag.
Now the son of one of the flag-raisers has written a powerful account of six very different young men who came together in a moment that will live forever.
To his family, John Bradley never spoke of the photograph or the war. But after his death at age seventy, his family discovered closed boxes of letters and photos. In Flags of Our Fathers, James Bradley draws on those documents to retrace the lives of his father and the men of Easy Company.
Following these men's paths to Iwo Jima, James Bradley has written a classic story of the heroic battle for the Pacific's most crucial island--an island riddled with Japanese tunnels and 22,000 fanatic defenders who would fight to the last man.
Few books ever have captured the complexity and furor of war and its aftermath as well as Flags of Our Fathers. A penetrating, epic look at a generation at war, this is history told with keen insight, enormous honesty, and the passion of a son paying homage to his father. It is the story of the difference between truth and myth, the meaning of being a hero, and the essence of the human experience of war.
With the content of an authoritative reference and the excitement of a thriller, this history of the U.S. submarine war is one of the most informative and entertaining books written on the Pacific campaign. The author, a respected journalist and World War II submariner himself, is credited with providing a complete and unbiased account of what happened. When published in 1975, it was the first such account to detail controversial aspects of the American campaign, from the torpedo scandal to discrepancies between claimed and confirmed sinkings.
To get to the truth, Clay Blair interviewed scores of skippers, staff officers, and code breakers, and combed thousands of documents and personal papers. In addition, he thoroughly researched the development of the submarine and torpedo from pre-war to post-war times. As a result, he takes the reader into the submarine war at all levels--the highest strategy sessions in Washington, the terrifying moments in subs at the bottom of the ocean waiting out exploding depth charges, the zany efforts of a crew coaxing a chicken to lay an egg. He also exposes the reader to the jealous infighting of admirals vying for power and the problems between cautious older skippers and daring young commanders. Supplementing the text are nearly forty maps showing submarine activity in the context of every important naval engagement in the Pacific, more than thirty pages of photographs, multiple appendixes (including a calendar of submarine war patrols), and an index of over 2,000 entries. This is a work of great scholarship and scope that makes a timeless contribution to the history of World War II.
Diamond Head, Hawaii, 1941. Pvt. Robert E. Lee Prewitt is a champion welterweight and a fine bugler. But when he refuses to join the company's boxing team, he gets "the treatment" that may break him or kill him. First Sgt. Milton Anthony Warden knows how to soldier better than almost anyone, yet he's risking his career to have an affair with the commanding officer's wife. Both Warden and Prewitt are bound by a common bond: the Army is their heart and blood . . .and, possibly, their death.In this magnificent but brutal classic of a soldier's life, James Jones portrays the courage, violence and passions of men and women who live by unspoken codes and with unutterable despair. . .in the most important American novel to come out of World War II, a masterpiece that captures as no ther the honor and savagery of men.