The Swedish Red Cross expedition to the German concentration camps from March to April 1945 was the largest rescue effort inside Germany during WWII. Led by Count Bernadotte of Wisborg, the mission became known for its distinctive buses: Each bus was purposefully painted entirely white except for the Red Cross emblem on the side so that they would not be mistaken for military targets. According to conservative figures in May 1945, at least 17,000 prisoners were transported to Sweden by these white buses.In this first book to detail this remarkable and hazardous operation, and with never-before-published photographs of the bus journeys, the details of Bernadotte's harrowing expedition to Ravensbruck concentration camp and his secret negotiations with Heinrich Himmler are revealed.
From his illegitimate birth in a small Austrian village to his fiery death in a bunker under the Reich chancellery in Berlin, Adolf Hitler left a murky trail, strewn with contradictory tales and overgrown with self-created myths. One truth prevails: the sheer scale of the evils that he unleashed on the world has made him a demonic figure without equal in this century. Ian Kershaw's Hitler brings us closer than ever before to the character of the bizarre misfit in his thirty-year ascent from a Viennese shelter for the indigent to uncontested rule over the German nation that had tried and rejected democracy in the crippling aftermath of World War I. With extraordinary vividness, Kershaw recreates the settings that made Hitler's rise possible: the virulent anti-Semitism of prewar Vienna, the crucible of a war with immense casualties, the toxic nationalism that gripped Bavaria in the 1920s, the undermining of the Weimar Republic by extremists of the Right and the Left, the hysteria that accompanied Hitler's seizure of power in 1933 and then mounted in brutal attacks by his storm troopers on Jews and others condemned as enemies of the Aryan race. In an account drawing on many previously untapped sources, Hitler metamorphoses from an obscure fantasist, a "drummer" sounding an insistent beat of hatred in Munich beer halls, to the instigator of an infamous failed putsch and, ultimately, to the leadership of a ragtag alliance of right-wing parties fused into a movement that enthralled the German people.
This volume, the first of two, ends with the promulgation of the infamous Nuremberg laws that pushed German Jews to the outer fringes of society, and with the march of the German army into the Rhineland, Hitler's initial move toward the abyss of war.
Published to coincide with the centennial celebration of U.S. Navy Aviation, this book chronicles Navy aviation from its earliest days, before the Navy's first aircraft carrier joined the fleet, through the modern jet era marked by the introduction of the F-18 Hornet. It tells how naval aviation got its start, profiles its pioneers, and explains the early bureaucracy that fostered and sometimes inhibited its growth. The book then turns to the refinement of carrier aviation doctrine and tactics and the rapid development of aircraft and carriers, highlighting the transition from propeller-driven aircraft to swept wing jets in the period after WW II. Land-based Navy aircraft, rotary-wing aircraft and rigid airships, and balloons are also considered in this sweeping tribute.
In this highly praised study hailed by Booklist as "disturbing, brutally honest, and scrupulously fair," Pierre Aycoberry, the celebrated author of The Nazi Question, combines extraordinary mastery of German history with original research for an unparalleled account of life under Hitler's Third Reich.
Aycoberry uncovers the struggles of individuals and social and professional groups who stood up to the pressures of the Nazi Party and often paid a high price, while he also sheds light on the attempts of others--mainly upper- and middle-class professionals--to salvage or improve their positions by casting their lot with the Fuhrer. In this complex answer to the easy judgments passed by many, Pierre Aycoberry writes what the Washington Post Book World has called "a subtle book that eschews facile generalizations and sensational accusations, and is full of prudent qualifications and warnings that what was true in one place and one time was not necessarily true twenty miles away or one year later."
Growing up in the beautiful mountains of Berchtesgaden -- just steps from Adolf Hitler's alpine retreat -- Irmgard Hunt had a seemingly happy, simple childhood. In her powerful, illuminating, and sometimes frightening memoir, Hunt recounts a youth lived under an evil but persuasive leader. As she grew older, the harsh reality of war -- and a few brave adults who opposed the Nazi regime -- aroused in her skepticism of National Socialist ideology and the Nazi propaganda she was taught to believe in.
In May 1945, an eleven-year-old Hunt watched American troops occupy Hitler's mountain retreat, signaling the end of the Nazi dictatorship and World War II. As the Nazi crimes began to be accounted for, many Germans tried to deny the truth of what had occurred; Hunt, in contrast, was determined to know and face the facts of her country's criminal past.
On Hitler's Mountain is more than a memoir -- it is a portrait of a nation that lost its moral compass. It is a provocative story of a family and a community in a period and location in history that, though it is fast becoming remote to us, has important resonance for our own time.
In the early morning hours of October 24, 1944, the legendary U.S. Navy submarine Tang was hit by one of its own faulty torpedoes. The survivors of the explosion struggled to stay alive one hundred-eighty feet beneath the surface, while the Japanese dropped deadly depth charges. As the air ran out, some of the crew made a daring ascent through the escape hatch. In the end, just nine of the original eighty-man crew survived.
But the survivors were beginning a far greater ordeal. After being picked up by the Japanese, they were sent to an interrogation camp known as the "Torture Farm." When they were liberated in 1945, they were close to death, but they had revealed nothing to the Japanese, including the greatest secret of World War II.
With the same heart-pounding narrative drive that made The Bedford Boys and The Longest Winter national bestsellers, Alex Kershaw brings to life this incredible story of survival and endurance.
This all new illustrated volume is the companion to Victor Chun's definitive history of American PT boats in the Second World War (see page 28). Chun presents all new information gleaned since the previous book's publication and includes never before published drawings of PT 809, as well as details on the use of Elcoplane as used by Elco PT boats to increase running speed, described here for the first time.
Following the success of his recent book on Navy SEALs in Iraq, The Sheriff of Ramadi, bestselling author and combat veteran Dick Couch now examines the importance of battlefield ethics in effectively combating terrorists without losing the battle for the hearts of the local population. A former SEAL who led one of the only successful POW rescue operations in Vietnam, Couch warns that the mistakes made in Vietnam forty years ago are being repeated in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that the stakes are even higher now. His book takes a critical look at the battlefield conduct of U.S. ground-combat units fighting insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan. Since the prize of the fight on the modern battlefield is the people, he warns every death has a consequence. Every killing has both strategic and moral significance for U.S. warriors.
From his unique and qualified perspective, Couch examines the sources and issues that can lead to wrong conduct on the battlefield, and explains how it comes about and what can be done to correct it. He considers the roles of command intent and the official rules of engagement, but his primary focus is on ethical conduct at the squad and platoon level. Tactical ethics, according to the author's definition, is the moral and ethical armor that should accompany every American warrior into battle, and these standards apply to the engaged unit as well as to the individual. A harsh critic of immoral combat tactics, Couch offers realistic measures to correct these potentially devastating errors. He argues that as a nation, we must do all we can to protect our soldiers' humanity, for their sake, so they can return from service with honor, and for our sake as a people and for our standing in the world.
Numerous successful reprints of contemporary works on rigging and seamanship indicate the breadth of interest in the lost art of handling square-rigged ships. Model makers, marine painters, and enthusiasts need to know not only how the ships were rigged but how much sail was set in each condition of wind and sea, how the various maneuvers were carried out, and the intricacies of operations like reefing sails or 'catting' an anchor.
John Harland has provided what is undeniably the most thorough book on handling square-rigged ships. Because of his facility in a remarkable range of languages, Harland has been able to study virtually every manual published over the past four centuries on the subject. As a result, he is able to present for the first time a proper historical development of seamanship among the major navies of the world.