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In the summer of 1943, at the height of World War II, battles were
exploding all throughout the Pacific theater. In mid-November of
that year, the United States waged a bloody campaign on Betio
Island in the Tarawa Atoll, the most heavily fortified Japanese
territory in the entire Pacific. They were fighting to wrest
control of the island to stage the next big push toward Japan--and
one journalist was there to chronicle the horror.
A brilliantly written memoir by a Venezuelan-born British journalist that skilfully uncovers the secrets of her father’s past: the annihilation of his family in the Holocaust, his courageous choice to build his life anew and his extraordinary commitment to hiding the truth from his own family.
There is a Czech saying – The darkest shadow is beneath the candle.
As a little girl growing up in a flourishing 1970s Venezuela, Ariana wanted to peer into the shadows and be a detective. With no real mysteries to solve, her childish curiosity led her to focus on the enigma of her own father, a brilliant industrialist who appeared to be the epitome of success and strength but who would wake in the night screaming in a language that she didn’t recognize.
Then, one day, she found an old identity document bearing his picture but someone else’s name.
Her father never spoke about the past. This was the first of many clues that she was to uncover in the years to come. They led her to a box of papers that he had left for her when he died in 2001. The box contained wartime documents that opened the door to her father’s past and finally gave her the permission he had long withheld to step through it.
Ariana meticulously uncovers the astonishing truth of her father’s extraordinary escape from Nazi-occupied Prague and inevitable deportation to the camps. Her painstaking investigation leads her across Europe and reveals his unlikely and inspiring choice to assume a fake identity and live out the war undercover, spying for the allies in Berlin—deep in the ‘darkest shadow’.
In producing a powerful piece of literary detective work and an important story of survival against the odds, she comes to know the family that had been lost and, ultimately, her own beloved father.
Simon Chase's life is a maze of burner phones, encrypted emails, secret meetings, and weaponry - all devoted to executing missions too sensitive for government acknowledgement. Working for shadowy British and American organisations, Chase has been on the trail of Bin Laden in Afghanistan, protected allied generals in Iraq, and been part of an operation directly related to the attack in 2012 on the US consulate in Benghazi. Zero Footprint takes us to this dangerous and thrilling world, and tells the true story of a private military contractor whose work forms the foundation for western security abroad, especially when the UK and US military, intelligence agencies, and departments of state need something done that they can't - or won't - do themselves.
Gordon Corera uses declassified documents and extensive original research to tell the story of MI14(d) and the Secret Pigeon Service for the first time. `This is an amazing story' Simon Mayo, BBC Radio 2 Between 1941 and 1944, sixteen thousand plucky homing pigeons were dropped in an arc from Bordeaux to Copenhagen as part of 'Columba' - a secret British operation to bring back intelligence from those living under Nazi occupation. The messages flooded back written on tiny pieces of rice paper tucked into canisters and tied to the legs of the birds. Authentic voices from rural France, the Netherlands and Belgium - they were sometimes comic, often tragic and occasionally invaluable with details of German troop movements and fortifications, new Nazi weapons, radar system or the deployment of the feared V-1 and V-2 rockets that terrorized London. Who were the people who provided this rich seam of intelligence? Many were not trained agents nor, with a few exceptions, people with any experience of spying. At the centre of this book is the `Leopold Vindictive' network - a small group of Belgian villagers prepared to take huge risks. They were led by an extraordinary priest, Joseph Raskin - a man connected to royalty and whose intelligence was so valuable it was shown to Churchill, leading MI6 to parachute agents in to assist him. A powerful and tragic tale of wartime espionage, the book brings together the British and Belgian sides of the Leopold Vindictive's story and reveals for the first time the wider history of a quirky, quarrelsome band of spy masters and their special wartime operations, as well as how bitter rivalries in London placed the lives of secret agents at risk. It is a book not so much about pigeons as the remarkable people living in occupied Europe who were faced with the choice of how to respond to a call for help, and took the decision to resist.
This recent government publication investigates an area often
overlooked by historians: the impact of the Holocaust on the
Western powers' intelligence-gathering community. A guide for
researchers rather than a narrative study, it explains the archival
organization of wartime records accumulated by the U.S. Army's
Signal Intelligence Service and Britain's Government Code and
Cypher School. In addition, it summarizes Holocaust-related
information intercepted during the war years and deals at length
with the fascinating question of how information about the
Holocaust first reached the West.
William R. Polk provides an informative, readable history of a country which is moving quickly toward becoming "the" dominant power and culture of the Middle East. A former member of the State Department's Policy Planning Council, Polk describes a country and a history misunderstood by many in the West. While Iranians chafe under the yolk of their current leaders, they also have bitter memories of generations of British, Russian and American espionage, invasion, and dominance. There are important lessons to be learned from the past, and Polk teases them out of a long and rich history and shows that it is not just now, but for decades to come that an understanding of Iran will be essential to American safety and well-being.
A gripping and insightful history of the French Resistance and the men and women who opposed Nazi occupation during World War II Based on personal stories, eyewitness accounts, and archival material, this vivid history goes behind the tales of derring-do and explains the forces that shaped the fight against the Nazis, providing a deeper explanation of events. The French resistance to Nazi occupation during World War II was a struggle in which ordinary people fought for their liberty, despite terrible odds and horrifying repression. Hundreds of thousands of Frenchmen and women carried out an armed struggle against the Nazis, producing underground anti-fascist publications and supplying the Allies with vital intelligence. With major themes of courage, self-sacrifice, betrayal, and struggle, this book shatters the illusion of a unified Resistance created by General de Gaulle, and brings to vivid life a true story of heroes and conflicts forgotten over the next half-century as the movement became a myth. Based on hundreds of French eyewitness accounts and including recently-released archival material, this book uses dramatic personal stories to take the reader on one of the great adventures of the 20th century.
From best-selling author of `A Brilliant Little Operation', winner of the British Army Military History prize and the Royal marines History prize for 2013, comes the long neglected D-Day story of the Resistance uprising and subsequent massacre on the Vercors massif - the largest action by the French Resistance during the Second World War. In 1941 factions of the French Resistance began to plot against their German occupiers. Aided by Allied arms and secret agents, they would seize the mountainous Vercors plateau in south-eastern France in a D-Day uprising intended to divert the Nazis from the Normandy beaches. But when muddled Allied strategy in London and Algiers left them abandoned, the 4,500 young fighters were left to face the might of the German Army alone. `The Cruel Victory' gives voice to the young fighters who fought the largest Resistance battle of the war. It is a story of how early idealism can turn to despair, and of the cost to those on the front line of battle when those at the top know too little about the harsh realities of war. It is a human story of heroic proportion.
The First World War is often viewed as a war fought by armies of millions living and fighting in trenches, aided by brutal machinery that cost the lives of many. But behind all of this a scientific war was also being fought between engineers, chemists, physicists, doctors,mathematicians and intelligence gatherers. This hidden war was to make a positive and lasting contribution to how war was conducted on land, at sea and in the air, and most importantly life at home. Secret Warriors provides an invaluable and fresh history of the First World War, profiling a number of the key figures who made great leaps in science for the benefit of 20th Century Britain. Told in a lively, narrative style, Secret Warriors reveals the unknown side of the war.
In the summer of 1940, the future of Britain and the free world depended on the morale and skill of the young men of Fighter Command. This is their story. The Battle of Britain is one of the most crucial battles ever fought, and the victory of Fighter Command over the Luftwaffe has always been celebrated as a classic feat of arms. But, as Patrick Bishop shows in this superb history, it was also a triumph of the spirit in which the attitudes of the pilots themselves played a crucial part. Reaching beyond the myths to convey the fear and exhilaration of life on this most perilous of frontlines, Patrick Bishop offers an intimate and compelling account that is a soaring tribute to the exceptional young men of Fighter Command.
The leader of the student uprising of 1968 and founding member of the notorious Weather Underground tells his story--for the first time
In 1968, Mark Rudd led the legendary occupation of five buildings at Columbia University, a dramatic act of protest against the university's support for the Vietnam War and its institutional racism. Rudd was the charismatic chairman of the Columbia chapter of SDS, Students for a Democratic Society, the largest radical student organization in the United States. After a violent police bust, the Columbia occupation turned into a student strike that closed down the entire campus, turning Rudd into a national symbol of student revolt. Rudd went on to become the cofounder of the Weatherman faction of SDS, which took control of the student organization and helped organize the notorious Days of Rage in Chicago in 1969.
But Mark Rudd wanted revolution.
Rudd and his friends sought to end war, racism, and injustice--by any means necessary, even violence. After a tragic turn that led to the death of three people, who were killed when the bombs they were making in a Greenwich Village town house exploded, they transformed themselves into the Weather Underground Organization. By the end of 1970, after a string of nonlethal bombings by the organization, Rudd, now one of the FBI's Most Wanted, went into hiding for more than seven years before turning himself in to great media fanfare.
In this gripping narrative, Rudd speaks out about this tumultuous period, the role he played in its crucial events, and its aftermath, revealing the drama and tension, as well as the naivete of young activists, fighting in the name of peace and social justice, who believed that their actions mattered.
"I've spoken and answered questions at scores of colleges, high schools, community centers, and theaters about why my friends and I opted for violent revolution, and how I've changed my thinking and how I haven't, and most of all, about the parallels between then and now," Rudd writes. Powerful and shocking, "Underground" sheds new light on this controversial time, which still haunts the nation.
The idea of the United States as a nation of immigrants has been at the core of the American narrative. But in 1924, Congress instituted a law that choked off large-scale immigration for decades, sharply curtailing arrivals from southern and eastern Europe and banning those from Asia. In a riveting narrative with a fascinating cast of characters, Jia Lynn Yang recounts how lawmakers, activists and presidents worked relentlessly for the next forty years-through a world war, a global refugee crisis and McCarthyist fever-to abolish the 1924 law. The 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act, one of the most transformative laws in the country's history, ended the system of racial biases and opened the door to non-white migration at levels never seen before-changing America in ways that those who debated it could hardly have imagined.
'A riveting and illuminating tour of how nations deal with crises - which might hopefully help humanity as a whole deal with our present global crisis' YUVAL NOAH HARARI, author of SAPIENS ** NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER** Author of the landmark international bestsellers Guns, Germs and Steel and Collapse, Jared Diamond has transformed our understanding of what makes civilizations rise and fall. Now, at a time when crises are erupting around the world, he explores what makes certain nations resilient, and reveals the factors that influence how nations and individuals can respond to enormous challenges. In a riveting journey into the recent past, he traces how six distinctive modern nations - Finland, Chile, Indonesia, Japan, Germany and Australia - have survived defining catastrophes, and identifies patterns in their recovery. Looking ahead, he investigates the risk that the United States and other countries, faced by grave threat, are set on a course towards catastrophe. Adding a rich psychological dimension to the in-depth history, geography, biology and anthropology that underpin all of Diamond's writing, Upheaval is epic in scope, but also his most personal book yet. 'Fascinating ... I finished the book even more optimistic about our ability to solve problems than I started' BILL GATES 'Jared Diamond does it again: another rich, original and fascinating chapter in the human saga - with vital lessons for our difficult times' STEVEN PINKER
This epic story opens at the hour the Greatest Generation went to war on December 7, 1941, and follows four U.S. Navy ships and their crews in the Pacific until their day of reckoning three years later with a far different enemy: a deadly typhoon. In December 1944, while supporting General MacArthur's invasion of the Philippines, Admiral William "Bull" Halsey neglected the Law of Storms, placing the mighty U.S. Third Fleet in harm's way. Drawing on extensive interviews with nearly every living survivor and rescuer, as well as many families of lost sailors, transcripts and other records from naval courts of inquiry, ships' logs, personal letters, and diaries, Bruce Henderson finds some of the story's truest heroes exhibiting selflessness, courage, and even defiance.
Praise for the 2005 Edition:
"A passionate and highly readable account of the current tragedy that combines intimate knowledge of the region's history, politics, and sociology with a telling cynicism about the polite but ineffectual diplomatic efforts to end it. It is the best account available of the Darfur crisis." Foreign Affairs
"Does the conflict in Darfur, however bloody, qualify as genocide? Or does the application of the word 'genocide' to Darfur make it harder to understand this conflict in its awful peculiarity? Is it possible that applying a generic label to Darfurian violence makes the task of stopping it harder? Or is questioning the label simply insensitive, implying that whatever has happened in Darfur isn't horrible enough to justify a claim on the world's conscience, and thus invite inaction or even the dismissal of Darfur altogether? These questions lie at the heart of a much-needed new book by Gerard Prunier. In this book, Prunier casts aside labels and lays bare the anatomy of the Darfur crisis, drawing on a mixture of history and journalism to produce the most important book of the year on any African subject." Salon.com
"The emergency in Darfur in western Sudan is far from over, as Gerard Prunier points out in this comprehensive and authoritative book. . . . He concisely covers the history, the conflicts, and the players. . . . This book is essential for anyone wanting to learn about this complex conflict." Library Journal
"If Darfuris are Muslim, what is their quarrel with the Islamic government in Khartoum? If they and the janjaweed 'evil horsemen' driving them from their homes are both black, how can it be Arab versus African? If the Sudanese government is making peace with the south, why would it be risking that by waging war in the west? Above all, is it genocide? Gerard Prunier has the answers. An ethnographer and renowned Africa analyst, he turns on the evasions of Khartoum the uncompromising eye that dissected Hutu power excuses for the Rwanda genocide a decade ago." The Guardian
Darfur: A 21st Century Genocide explains what lies behind the conflict in Western Sudan, how it came about, why it is should not be oversimplified, and why it is so relevant to the future of Africa. As the world watches, governments decide if, when, and how to intervene, and international organizations struggle to distribute aid, Gerard Prunier's book provide crucial assistance. The third edition features a new chapter covering events through mid-2008."
A remarkable first-hand account of one tank commander's experiences during the Allied invasion from D-Day to VE Day. 'An arresting chronicle of the life of an ordinary soldier during the push to victory' Daily Express Tank Commander Sgt Trevor Greenwood of C Squadron, the 9th Royal Tank Regiment, sailed for France in June 1944 as part of the Allied invasion of Normandy. From D-Day until April 1945, he kept a daily diary of his experiences of the final push through France and into Germany, often writing in secret and in terrible conditions. Under fire, outgunned and facing a bitter winter, he never loses his moral compass or his sense of humour - finding time to brew tea and maintain morale with characterful British reserve. He writes candidly of his frustration and despair of seeing Bomber Command mistakenly bomb Allied lines near Caen (August 1944), the liberation of Le Havre (September 1944), the fighting around Roosendaal, Holland (October 1944), the reception of soldiers by the Dutch families on whom they were billeted (December 1944), and concludes with 'mopping up' operations in northern Germany (April 1945). His astonishing diary has left us a unique record of the war in Europe from the rarely-seen perspective of an ordinary soldier.An accompanying essay about the tank battles of Normandy by Duxford Museum's tank expert provide added value.
Over 3 Million Copies Sold! Celebrate 50 years since the release of Phyllis Schlafly's monumental A Choice Not an Echo, the book that launched the conservative resurgence of the late 20th century. This special updated and expanded edition contains 50 percent new material placing the book in its historical context and applying the book's lessons to the issues of today.
From the evacuation of France in 1940 to the final dash to Hamburg in 1945, the 5th Royal Tank Regiment were on the front line throughout the Second World War. Theirs was a war that saw them serve in Africa as part of the Desert Rats, before returning to Europe for the Normandy landings. Wherever they went, the notoriety of the 'Filthy Fifth' grew - they revelled in their reputation for fighting by their own rules. The Tank War explains how Britain, having lost its advantage in tank warfare by 1939, regained ground through shifts in tactics and leadership methods, as well as the daring and bravery of the crews themselves. Overturning the received wisdom of much Second World War history, Mark Urban shows how the tank regiments' advances were the equal of the feats of the German Panzer divisions. Drawing on a wealth of new material, from interviews with surviving soldiers to rarely seen archive material, this is an unflinchingly honest, unsentimental and often brutal account of the 5th RTR's wartime experiences. Capturing the characters in the crews and exploring the strategy behind their success, The Tank War is not just the story of an battle hardened unit, but something more extraordinary: the triumph of ordinary men, against long odds, in the darkest of times.
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