Liberating Europe: D-Day to Victory in Europe 1944-1945

Pen and Sword
2
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Despatches in this volume include the Despatch on air operations by the Allied Expeditionary Air Force in North West Europe between November 1943 and September 1944, the despatch on the assault phase of the Normandy landings June 1944, despatch on operations of Coastal Command, Royal Air Force in Operation Overlord Ð the invasion of Europe 1944, the despatch on operations in North West Europe between 6 June 1944 and 5 May 1945, by Field Marshal the Viscount Montgomery of Alamein, Commander 21st Army Group, the despatch on the final stages of the naval war in North West Europe, and, as an addition, the despatch on the Dieppe Raid in 1942.??This unique collection of original documents will prove to be an invaluable resource for historians, students and all those interested in what was one of the most significant periods in British military history.
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Publisher
Pen and Sword
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Published on
Jun 18, 2014
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Pages
240
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ISBN
9781473838277
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Military / World War II
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This content is DRM protected.
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Everyone is familiar with the story of D-Day and the triumphal liberation of France by the Allies: a barbaric enemy was defeated by Allied ingenuity, courage and overwhelming military force, helped by dreadful German command errors and the terrible state of Wehrmacht forces in the West – but is this all true? The Wehrmacht was hugely experienced, equipped with some of the best weaponry of the war and was holding its own in Italy and Russia at the time. Berlin knew the invasion was coming and had had years to prepare for it. So how did the Germans view the impending invasion and campaign, did they feel ready, what forces did they have and could they have done better? Previous histories have focused on the ‘clash of the generals’; the battle between von Runstedt and Eisenhower, Montgomery and Rommel, but on the German side in particular this was a battle that would be fought by divisional and regimental commanders; the ‘German D-Day colonels’ upon whom the real business of trying to defeat the invasion fell – it was they and their men, outnumbered and outgunned, who somehow held Normandy for ten whole weeks against the greatest seaborne invasion force ever assembled, and occasionally even came close to defeating it. In the end they lost, and the majority of these unsung leaders ended up killed, wounded or captured in the fighting. As for their men, they ranged from élite Waffen-SS stormtroopers through to bewildered teenagers, old men, ‘recycled’ invalids and even anti-communist Eastern legions. Written from the ‘other side’ and told through the words of the veterans, this book is a revelation.
This is the final volume of a comprehensive five part work, including a multitude of personal accounts of every aspect of the aerial operations on 'Gold' 'Juno and 'Sword' beaches during D-Day. It relays the sense of relief experienced as Allied troops gained a foothold on the continent of Europe after D-Day, both by the men caught up in the proceedings and the jubilant civilians on the home front. By the end of June 875,000 men had landed in Normandy; 16 divisions each for the American and British armies. Although the Allies were well established on the coast and possessed all the Cotentin Peninsular, the Americans had still not taken St Lo, nor the British and Canadians the town of Caen, originally a target for D-Day. German resistance, particularly around Caen was ferocious, but the end result would be similar to the Tunisian campaign. More and more well-trained German troops were thrown into the battle, so that when the Allies did break out of Normandy, the defenders lost heavily and lacked the men to stop the Allied forces from almost reaching the borders of Germany. In continuing style, Bowman pays respect to the men who fought in the skies above France on D-Day. This episode of Aviation history has never before been the focus of such detailed analysis; the five volumes of this series act as a memorial to the individuals who played their own individual parts in the wider proceedings. Far from being a mere operational record, this is the story of the men behind the headlines, the reality behind the iconic images of parachute drops and glider formations.
While headline writers in the ETO were naturally focused on events in Normandy and the Bulge in the north, equally ferocious combats were taking place in southern France and Germany during 1944–45, which are now finally getting their due. The US 14th Armored Division—a late arrival to the theater—was thrust into intense combat almost the minute it arrived in Europe, as the Germans remained determined to defend their southern flank.

Like other US formations, the 14th AD, after advancing through France against intermittent opposition, was hammered to a standstill at the Westwall in the fall of 1944. Nevertheless, it had gained experience, and when the Germans sought to turn the tide, with Operation Northwind, they found a hardened formation against them. This book explores in detail what happened in the month of January 1945 in the snow-covered Vosges Mountains, when the Wehrmacht's attempt to destroy the Sixth Army Group failed. Northwind began in the mountains but was extended onto the plains of Alsace very near the Rhine River. A strategic withdrawal after a hellish ten days of fiery combat allowed the Allies to hold the line until a spring offensive. The dreadful cold and the conflagration of battle took a toll on both sides, but by now the 14th and the other American divisions felt the heat of battle in their hearts and knew what had to be done to defeat a wily enemy.

But the Siegfried Line still loomed in front to American forces, and in the sector of the 14th, the divisions literally exploded their way through it in March at Steinfeld, and began to propel the Wehrmacht into a retreat from which it could never recover. Armored columns kept punching their way through roadblock after roadblock in town after town with powerful artillery and air concentrations that never gave the German soldiers a chance to respond. As a result of the rapid advance of Seventh Army and the 14th, German POW camps like the ones at Hammelburg and Moosburg were liberated of over 100,000 prisoners, an achievement which gave the division the nom de guerre "The Liberators."

Timothy O'Keeffe, a Professor Emeritus from Southern Connecticut State College, had a brother-in-law who lost a leg while serving with the “Liberators,” and
thus has devoted years of effort to unveiling the crucial, yet heretofore unwritten, role that they played in the ultimate Allied victory.
Stephen E. Ambrose’s iconic New York Times bestseller about the ordinary men who became the World War II’s most extraordinary soldiers: Easy Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, US Army.

They came together, citizen soldiers, in the summer of 1942, drawn to Airborne by the $50 monthly bonus and a desire to be better than the other guy. And at its peak—in Holland and the Ardennes—Easy Company was as good a rifle company as any in the world.

From the rigorous training in Georgia in 1942 to the disbanding in 1945, Stephen E. Ambrose tells the story of this remarkable company. In combat, the reward for a job well done is the next tough assignment, and as they advanced through Europe, the men of Easy kept getting the tough assignments.

They parachuted into France early D-Day morning and knocked out a battery of four 105 mm cannon looking down Utah Beach; they parachuted into Holland during the Arnhem campaign; they were the Battered Bastards of the Bastion of Bastogne, brought in to hold the line, although surrounded, in the Battle of the Bulge; and then they spearheaded the counteroffensive. Finally, they captured Hitler's Bavarian outpost, his Eagle's Nest at Berchtesgaden.

They were rough-and-ready guys, battered by the Depression, mistrustful and suspicious. They drank too much French wine, looted too many German cameras and watches, and fought too often with other GIs. But in training and combat they learned selflessness and found the closest brotherhood they ever knew. They discovered that in war, men who loved life would give their lives for them.

This is the story of the men who fought, of the martinet they hated who trained them well, and of the captain they loved who led them. E Company was a company of men who went hungry, froze, and died for each other, a company that took 150 percent casualties, a company where the Purple Heart was not a medal—it was a badge of office.
Civil resistance, especially in the form of massive peaceful demonstrations, was at the heart of the Arab Spring-the chain of events in the Middle East and North Africa that erupted in December 2010. It won some notable victories: popular movements helped to bring about the fall of authoritarian governments in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen. Yet these apparent triumphs of non-violent action were followed by disasters—wars in Syria, anarchy in Libya and Yemen, reversion to authoritarian rule in Egypt, and counter-revolution backed by external intervention in Bahrain. Looming over these events was the enduring divide between the Sunni and Shi'a branches of Islam. Why did so much go wrong? Was the problem the methods, leadership and aims of the popular movements, or the conditions of their societies? In this book, experts on these countries, and on the techniques of civil resistance, set the events in their historical, social and political contexts. They describe how governments and outside powers—including the US and EU—responded, how Arab monarchies in Jordan and Morocco undertook to introduce reforms to avert revolution, and why the Arab Spring failed to spark a Palestinian one. They indicate how and why Tunisia remained, precariously, the country that experienced the most political change for the lowest cost in bloodshed. This book provides a vivid illustrated account and rigorous scholarly analysis of the course and fate, the strengths and the weaknesses, of the Arab Spring. The authors draw clear and challenging conclusions from these tumultuous events. Above all, they show how civil resistance aiming at regime change is not enough: building the institutions and the trust necessary for reforms to be implemented and democracy to develop is a more difficult but equally crucial task.
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE • Look for special features inside. Join the Random House Reader’s Circle for author chats and more.

In boyhood, Louis Zamperini was an incorrigible delinquent. As a teenager, he channeled his defiance into running, discovering a prodigious talent that had carried him to the Berlin Olympics. But when World War II began, the athlete became an airman, embarking on a journey that led to a doomed flight on a May afternoon in 1943. When his Army Air Forces bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean, against all odds, Zamperini survived, adrift on a foundering life raft. Ahead of Zamperini lay thousands of miles of open ocean, leaping sharks, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. Driven to the limits of endurance, Zamperini would answer desperation with ingenuity; suffering with hope, resolve, and humor; brutality with rebellion. His fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would be suspended on the fraying wire of his will.
 
Unbroken is an unforgettable testament to the resilience of the human mind, body, and spirit, brought vividly to life by Seabiscuit author Laura Hillenbrand.

Hailed as the top nonfiction book of the year by Time magazine • Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for biography and the Indies Choice Adult Nonfiction Book of the Year award
 
“Extraordinarily moving . . . a powerfully drawn survival epic.”—The Wall Street Journal
 
“[A] one-in-a-billion story . . . designed to wrench from self-respecting critics all the blurby adjectives we normally try to avoid: It is amazing, unforgettable, gripping, harrowing, chilling, and inspiring.”—New York
 
“Staggering . . . mesmerizing . . . Hillenbrand’s writing is so ferociously cinematic, the events she describes so incredible, you don’t dare take your eyes off the page.”—People
 
“A meticulous, soaring and beautifully written account of an extraordinary life.”—The Washington Post
 
“Ambitious and powerful . . . a startling narrative and an inspirational book.”—The New York Times Book Review
 
“Magnificent . . . incredible . . . [Hillenbrand] has crafted another masterful blend of sports, history and overcoming terrific odds; this is biography taken to the nth degree, a chronicle of a remarkable life lived through extraordinary times.”—The Dallas Morning News
 
“An astonishing testament to the superhuman power of tenacity.”—Entertainment Weekly
 
“A tale of triumph and redemption . . . astonishingly detailed.”—O: The Oprah Magazine
 
“[A] masterfully told true story . . . nothing less than a marvel.”—Washingtonian
 
“[Hillenbrand tells this] story with cool elegance but at a thrilling sprinter’s pace.”—Time
 
“Hillenbrand [is] one of our best writers of narrative history. You don’t have to be a sports fan or a war-history buff to devour this book—you just have to love great storytelling.”—Rebecca Skloot, author of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
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