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Deng Adut was six years old when war came to his village in South Sudan. Taken from his mother, he was conscripted into the Sudan People's Liberation Army. He was taught to use an AK-47 then sent into battle. Shot in the back, dealing with illness and the relentless brutality of war, Deng's future was bleak. A child soldier must kill or be killed. But, after five years, he was rescued by his brother John and smuggled into a Kenyan refugee camp. With the support of the UN and help from an Australian couple, Deng and John became the third Sudanese family resettled in Australia. Despite physical injuries and ongoing mental trauma, Deng seized the chance he'd been given. Deng taught himself to read and, in 2005, he enrolled in a Bachelor of Laws at Western Sydney University. Songs of a War Boy is the inspirational story of a young man who has overcome unthinkable adversity to become a lawyer, refugee advocate and NSW Australian of the Year. Deng's memoir is an important reminder of the power of compassion and the benefit to us all when we open our doors and our hearts to those fleeing war, persecution and pain.
This is the gripping story of the five Munich university students who set up an underground resistance movement in World War II, featured in the award-winning Oscar-nominated film, Sophie Scholl - The Final Days. This 75th anniversary edition commemorates the 75 years since their arrest & execution in 1943. This updated edition includes a new preface and more photos
The Allied airborne and amphibious landings on D-Day opened up the long-awaited Second Front against Nazi Germany, but after overcoming the German coastal defenses at Utah and "Bloody Omaha," the US Army found itself having to contest every hedgerow and street in a nightmarish battle of attrition. It was the humble infantrymen of both sides who would play a vital role in taking and holding key objectives. Battles across Europe tested both sides to the limit, from the close-quarters warfare around Cherbourg in June 1944 to the struggle for the Scharnhorst Line in October and the brutal cold-weather fighting in the Ardennes that December. Featuring full-color artwork, specially drawn maps, and archive photographs, this study offers key insights into the tactics, leadership, and combat performance of the US and German infantrymen pitched into three pivotal actions at the height of World War II.
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.
Carve Her Name With Pride is the inspiring story of the half-French Violette Szabo who was born in Paris Iin 1921 to an English motor-car dealer, and a French Mother. She met and married Etienne Szabo, a Captain in the French Foreign Legion in 1940. Shortly after the birth of her daughter, Tania, her husband died at El Alamein. She became a FANY (First Aid Nursing Yeomanry) and was recruited into the SOE and underwent secret agent training. Her first trip to France was completed successfully even though she was arrested and then released by the French Police. On June 7th, 1944, Szabo was parachuted into Limoges. Her task was to co-ordinate the work of the French Resistance in the area in the first days after D-Day. She was captured by the SS 'Das Reich' Panzer Division and handed over to the Gestapo in Paris for interrogation. From Paris, Violette Szabo was sent to Ravensbruck concentration camp where she was executed in January 1945. She was only 23 and for her courage was posthumously awarded The George Cross and the Croix de Guerre.
November 1950, the Korean Peninsula: After General MacArthur ignores Mao's warnings and pushes his UN forces deep into North Korea, his ten thousand First Division marines find themselves surrounded and hopelessly outnumbered by one hundred thousand Chinese soldiers near the Chosin Reservoir. Their only chance for survival is to fight their way south through the Toktong Pass, a narrow gorge in the Nangnim Mountains. This choke point will need to be held open at all costs. The mission is handed to Captain William Barber and the 236 men of Fox Company, a courageous but undermanned unit of the Seventh Marine Regiment. Barber and his men are ordered to climb seven miles of frozen terrain to a rocky promontory overlooking the pass, where they will endure four days and five nights of nearly continuous Chinese attempts to take Fox Hill. Amid the relentless violence, three-quarters of Fox's marines are killed, wounded, or captured. Just when it looks like the outfit will be overrun, Lieutenant Colonel Raymond Davis, a fearless marine officer who is fighting south from the Chosin, volunteers to lead a daring mission that will seek to cut a hole in the Chinese lines and relieve the men of Fox Company. The Last Stand of Fox Company is a fast-paced and gripping account of heroism and self-sacrifice in the face of impossible odds. The authors have conducted dozens of first-hand interviews with the battle's survivors, and they narrate the story with the immediacy of classic accounts of a single battle like Guadalcanal Diary, Pork Chop Hill, and Black Hawk Down.
A daring behind-enemy-lines mission from the author of A Time of Gifts and The Broken Road, who was once described by the BBC as 'a cross between Indiana Jones, James Bond and Graham Greene'. Although a story often told, this is the first time Patrick Leigh Fermor's own account of the kidnapping of General Kriepe, has been published. One of the greatest feats in Patrick Leigh Fermor's remarkable life was the kidnapping of General Kreipe, the German commander in Crete, on 26 April 1944. He and Captain Billy Moss hatched a daring plan to abduct the general, while ensuring that no reprisals were taken against the Cretan population. Dressed as German military police, they stopped and took control of Kreipe's car, drove through twenty-two German checkpoints, then succeeded in hiding from the German army before finally being picked up on a beach in the south of the island and transported to safety in Egypt on 14 May. Abducting a General is Leigh Fermor's own account of the kidnap, published for the first time. Written in his inimitable prose, and introduced by acclaimed Special Operations Executive historian Roderick Bailey, it is a glorious first-hand account of one of the great adventures of the Second World War. Also included in this book are Leigh Fermor's intelligence reports, sent from caves deep within Crete yet still retaining his remarkable prose skills, which bring the immediacy of SOE operations vividly alive, as well as the peril which the SOE and Resistance were operating under; and a guide to the journey that Kreipe was taken on, as seen in the 1957 film Ill Met by Moonlight starring Dirk Bogarde, from the abandonment of his car to the embarkation site so that the modern visitor can relive this extraordinary event.
"From Pusan to Panmunjom" is the candid and revealing wartime memoir of the soldier who, at the age of thirty-two, became South Korea's first four-star general. It brings an unprecedented perspective to a cataclysmic war.
Major Tom's War is a powerful account of the impact of WWI on a doomed generation and on one Indian Army cavalry officer in particular. Why is Bengal-born solicitor Tom Westmacott desperate to flee Calcutta in 1914? And why does Evie Winnington-Ingram, who has good cause to hate him, agree to his proposal of marriage? Their dark, shared past initially drives them apart. War forces them to face up to a harrowing present before they emerge, together, into an unexpected future. The author spins a unique tale of authentic experiences from her family's archive full of memorable characters: her grandfather Tom, the proud and damaged cavalry officer; his nurse and reluctant bride, Evie; Tom's vicious nemesis, Lochdubh; Amar Singh, the steadfast leader of the Sikhs; Tom's protector, Harnam Singh; the reckless yet terrified young lieutenant, Reggie Durand; Gaston Derome, the hero mayor of Bavay, a French town clinging to survival under the heel of the invader; and four unforgettable horses.
Between 1941 and 1945 more than 110,000 American marines, soldiers, airmen, and sailors were taken prisoner by German, Italian, and Japanese forces. Most who fought overseas during World War II weren't prepared for capture, or for the life-altering experiences of incarceration, torture, and camaraderie bred of hardship that followed. Their harrowing story--often overlooked in Greatest Generation narratives--is told here by the POWs themselves. Long hours of inactivity followed by moments of sheer terror. Slave labor, death marches, the infamous hell ships. Historian Thomas Saylor pieces together the stories of nearly one hundred World War II POWs to explore what it was like to be the "guest" of the Axis Powers and to reveal how these men managed to survive. Gunner Bob Michelsen bailed out of his wounded B-29 near Tokyo, only to endure days of interrogation and beatings and months as a "special prisoner" in a tiny cell home to seventeen other Americans. Medic Richard Ritchie spent long moments of terror locked with dozens of others in an unmarked boxcar that was repeatedly strafed by Allied forces. In the closing chapter to this moving narrative, the men speak of their difficult transition to life back home, where many sought--not always successfully--to put their experience behind them. Thomas Saylor is an associate professor of history and the director of the Faculty Scholarship Center at Concordia University in St. Paul. He is the author of "Remembering the Good War: Minnesota's Greatest Generation" (MHS Press),""
In 1941, before America entered World War II, determined young LeRoy Gover signed on with Britain's Royal Air Force to fly the plane of his dreams, the fast, sleek Spitfire. When America joined the fight, he transitioned to the powerful P-47 Thunderbolt. Former USAF pilot and aviation historian Philip D. Caine has skillfully selected from the young flyer's letters and diary entries to create a vivid portrait of the kind of man who helped win the war. A story of great courage, Spitfires, Thunderbolts, and Warm Beer is a testament to the many other brave men who served.
A brilliantly original history of the First World War, re-tracing the footsteps of the Indian Army's 1.5 million men who in 1914-18 served about the globe from Europe to Africa, Asia and the Indian Ocean. After years of neglect, The Indian Empire at War raises the curtain on the Indian soldiers' personal experiences fighting for the Allies against the Central Powers, and returning home to play their part in the Indian Independence movement.
Step into the violent world of the 13th century, where the European states of the Levant battled with Muslim powers for control of Jerusalem. At the cutting edge of the conflict were the elite fighting men of the Crusader and Egyptian armies - the Knights Templar and the Mamluks, respectively. The Templars were the most famous and formidable of the European Military Orders, while the Mamluks were a slave caste whose fighting prowess had elevated them to the point of holding real political power, threatening their Ayyubid masters who relied on them so desperately for military success. This book draws on the latest research to tell the story of three key engagements from the Fifth Crusade to the Seventh Crusade. It reveals the extraordinary ferocity with which these battles were fought, and how the struggle between Templar and Mamluk came to shape the political future of the region.
The First Cavalry Division came under surprise attack in Sadr City
on April 4, 2004, now known as "Black Sunday." On the homefront,
over 7,000 miles away, their families awaited the news for
forty-eight hellish hours-expecting the worst. ABC News' chief
correspondent Martha Raddatz shares remarkable tales of heroism,
hope, and heartbreak.
The most audacious true story of friendship and indomitable British spirit you will ever read! For fans of wartime heroism who enjoyed THE LAST ESCAPE by John Nichol and ESCAPING HITLER by Monty Halls. In Northern Poland in 1940, at the Nazi war camp Stalag XX-A, two men struck up an unlikely friendship that was to lead to one of the most daring and remarkable wartime escape stories ever told. Antony Coulthard was the privately educated son of wealthy parents and he had a first-class honours degree in modern languages from Oxford. The other man, Fred Foster, was the son of a bricklayer from Nottinghamshire - he left school with no qualifications aged 14. This seemingly mismatched young pair bonded together and hatched a plan to disguise themselves as advertising executives working for Siemens. They would simply walk out of the camp, board a train - and head straight into the heart of Nazi Germany. Which is precisely what they did. Their route into Germany was one that no one would think to search for escaped PoWs. This breathtakingly audacious plan involved 18 months of undercover work, including Antony (nicknamed `The Professor' by fellow inmates) spending 3-hours every evening teaching Fred how to speak German. They set off for the Swiss border via Germany, doing some sightseeing along the way in Munich and Berlin, taking notes of strategic interest while eating in restaurants and drinking beer with Nazi officers, just yards from Hitler's HQ. But when they reached the border town of Lake Constance, with Switzerland within their reach, Antony crossed over into freedom, while Fred's luck ran out. What happened to them both next is both heartbreaking and inspiring.
""My new friends have begun to suspect I haven't told them the full
story of my life.
At the end of the First World War, there were 270,000 demobilised Australian soldiers in Europe. Getting them home after the Armistice was a task of epic proportions that would take more than two years. In the meantime, how to keep these disgruntled, damaged men with guns occupied? In a word: sport. The Oarsmen tells the story of the servicemen who survived the war to row for the coveted King's Cup at the 1919 Royal Henley Peace Regatta. Competing against crews from the US, New Zealand, France, the UK and Canada, the Australians were a ragtag bunch of oarsmen thrown in an old-fashioned boat and expected to race. Many had seen the worst of the action during the war at Gallipoli and the Western Front, and carried scars both physical and psychological. The baggage they brought to the boat would soon threaten to capsize the whole endeavour. Combining first-hand accounts with lively prose, this never-before-told story approaches the First World War from peacetime and illuminates history in vivid and compelling detail. Interweaving the soldiers' personal stories from before, during and after the war, The Oarsmen paints a fascinating picture of how these men, and society, transitioned from an unprecedented war to a new sort of peace.
A powerful work of literary military history from the New York Times bestselling author of In Harm's Way and Horse Soldiers, the harrowing, redemptive, and utterly unforgettable account of an American army reconnaissance platoon's fight for survival during the Vietnam War-whose searing experiences reverberate today among the millions of American families touched by this war. On a single night, January 31, 1968, as many as 100,000 soldiers in the North Vietnamese Army attacked thirty-six cities throughout South Vietnam, hoping to topple the government and dislodge American forces. Forty young American soldiers of an army reconnaissance platoon (Echo Company, 1/501) of the 101st Airborne Division and hailing from small farms, beach towns, and such big cities as Chicago and Los Angeles are suddenly thrust into savage combat, having been in-country only a few weeks. Their battles against both North Vietnamese Army soldiers and toughened Viet Cong guerillas are relentless, often hand-to-hand, and waged night and day across landing zones, rice paddies, hamlets, and dense jungle. The exhausting day-to-day existence, which involves ambushes on both sides, grueling gun battles, and heroic rescues of wounded comrades, forges the group into a lifelong brotherhood. The Odyssey of Echo Company is about the young men who survived this epic span, and centers on the searing experiences of one of them, Stanley Parker, who is wounded three times during the fighting. When the young men come home, some encounter a country that doesn't understand what they have suffered and survived. Many of them fall silent, knowing that few of their countrymen want to hear the remarkable story they have lived to tell-until now. Based on hundreds of hours of interviews, dozens of personal letters written in the combat zone, Pentagon after-action reports, and travel to the battle sites with some of the soldiers (who meet their Vietnamese counterpart), and augmented by detailed maps and remarkable combat zone photographs, The Odyssey of Echo Company breaks through the wall of time to recount ordinary young American men in an extraordinary time in America and confirms Doug Stanton's prominence as an unparalleled storyteller of our age.
The most audacious true story of friendship and indomitable British spirit you will ever read! In Northern Poland in 1940, at the Nazi war camp Stalag XX-A, two men struck up an unlikely friendship that was to lead to one of the most daring and remarkable wartime escape stories ever told. Antony Coulthard was the privately educated son of wealthy parents and he had a first-class honours degree in modern languages from Oxford. The other man, Fred Foster, was the son of a bricklayer from Nottinghamshire - he left school with no qualifications aged 14. This seemingly mismatched young pair bonded together and hatched a plan to disguise themselves as advertising executives working for Siemens. They would simply walk out of the camp, board a train - and head straight into the heart of Nazi Germany. Which is precisely what they did. Their route into Germany was one that no one would think to search for escaped PoWs. This breathtakingly audacious plan involved 18 months of undercover work, including Antony (nicknamed `The Professor' by fellow inmates) spending 3-hours every evening teaching Fred how to speak German. They set off for the Swiss border via Germany, doing some sightseeing along the way in Munich and Berlin, taking notes of strategic interest while eating in restaurants and drinking beer with Nazi officers, just yards from Hitler's HQ. But when they reached the border town of Lake Constance, with Switzerland within their reach, Antony crossed over into freedom, while Fred's luck ran out. What happened to them both next is both heartbreaking and inspiring.
Train to Nowhere is a war memoir seen through the sardonic eyes of Anita Leslie, a funny and vivacious young woman who reports on her experiences with a dry humour, finding the absurd alongside the tragic. Daughter of a baronet and first cousin once removed of Winston Churchill, she joined the Mechanized Transport Corps as a fully trained mechanic and ambulance driver during WWII, serving in Libya, Syria, Palestine, Italy, France and Germany. Ahead of her time, Anita bemoans `first-rate women subordinate to second-rate men,' and, as the English army forbade women from serving at the front, joined the Free French Forces in order to do what she felt was her duty. Writing letters in Hitler's recently vacated office and marching in the Victory parade contrast with observations of seeing friends murdered and a mother avenging her son by coldly shooting a prisoner of war. Unflinching and unsentimental, Train to Nowhere is a memoir of Anita's war, one that, long after it was written, remains poignant and relevant. With a new introduction by Penny Perrick.
On 22 June 2013, Corporal Cameron Baird was a 2nd Commando Regiment Special Forces soldier when he led his platoon into a known Taliban stronghold to back-up another Australian unit under heavy fire. In the prolonged firefight, Cameron was mortally wounded. In 2014, Cameron's bravery and courage under fire saw him posthumously awarded the 100th Victoria Cross, our highest award possible for bravery in the presence of the enemy. Cameron Baird died how he lived - at the front, giving it his all, without any indecision. He will forever be remembered by his mates and the soldiers he served with in the 2nd Commando Regiment. THE COMMANDO reveals Cameron's life, from young boy and aspiring AFL player, who only missed out on being drafted because of injury, to exemplary soldier and leader. Cameron's story and that of 4RAR and 2nd Commando personifies the courage and character of the men and women who go to war and will show us the good man we have lost.
Nearly forty female agents were sent out by the French section of Britain's Special Operations Executive (SOE) during the Second World War. The youngest was 19 and the oldest 53. Most were trained in paramilitary warfare, fieldcraft, the use of weapons and explosives, sabotage, silent killing, parachuting, codes and cyphers, wireless transmission and receiving, and general spycraft. These women - as well as others from clandestine Allied organisations - were flown out and parachuted or landed into France on vital and highly dangerous missions: their task, to work with resistance movements both before and after D-Day. Bernard O'Connor uses recently declassified government documents, personnel files, mission reports and memoirs to assess the successes and failures of the 38 women including Odette Sansom, Denise Colin, and Cecile Pichard. Of the twelve who were captured, only two survived; the others were executed, some after being tortured by the sadistic officers of the Gestapo. This is their story.
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