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April 1945. As Allied bombs rain down on Europe, a 400-year-old institution looks set to be wiped off the face of the Earth. The famous white Lipizzaner stallions of the Spanish Riding School in Vienna, unique and precious animals representing centuries of careful breeding, are scattered across rural Austria and Czechoslovakia in areas soon to be swallowed up by Soviet forces – there, doubtless, to become rations for the Red Army.
Their only hope lies with the Americans: what if a small, highly mobile US task force could be sent deep behind German lines, through fanatical SS troops, to rescue the horses before the Soviets arrive. Just five light tanks, a handful of armoured cars and jeeps, and 300 battle-weary GIs must plunge headlong into the unknown on a rescue mission that could change the course of European history.
So begins Operation Cowboy, the greatest Second World War story that has never been fully told. GIs will join forces with surrendered German soldiers and liberated prisoners of war to save the world’s finest horses from fanatical SS and the ruthless Red Army in an extraordinary battle during the last few days of the war in Europe.
Based on intelligence documents, personal testimonies, memoirs and official histories, including material only declassified in 2010, Guarding Hitler provides the reader with a fascinating inside look at the secret world of Hitlers security and domestic arrangements. The book focuses in particular on both the official and private life of Hitler during the latter part of the war, at the Wolfs Lair at Rastenburg, and Hitlers private residence at Berchtesgaden, the Berghof. Guarding Hitler manages to offer fresh insights into the life and routine of the Fuhrer, and most importantly the often indiscreet opinions, observations and activities of the little people who surrounded Hitler but whose stories have been overshadowed by the great affairs of state. It covers not only the plots against Hitlers life but the way security developed as a result. His use of doubles is examined as is security whilst travelling by land or air. As little has been written about the security and domestic life of Adolf Hitler, Guarding Hitler allows the reader to delve deeper into this previously overlooked but nonetheless fascinating aspect of the worlds most infamous man.
The mistreatment and captivity of women by the Japanese is a little known and poorly documented aspect of the Second World War. In The Real Tenko, Mark Felton, who has a fast growing reputation as an authority and author on the war in the Far East, redresses this omission with a typically well researched yet necessarily gruesome account of the plight of Allied service-women, female civilians and local women in Japanese hands.Among the atrocities shamefully committed by the Emperor's forces were numerous massacres of nurses; that at Alexandra Hospital, Singapore being perhaps the best known. The lack of respect for their defeated enemies extended in full measure to both European and Asian women and their vulnerability was all too often shockingly exploited. Those who found themselves imprisoned fared little better and suffered appalling indignities and starvation. Also covered are the hardships of gruelling marches under extreme conditions. Whereas the sexual enslavement of so called 'Comfort Women' has been regarded as affecting only Asiatic women, it transpires that this horror was experienced by whites as well.The Real Tenko is a disturbing and shocking testimony both to the callous and cruel behaviour of the Japanese and to the courage and fortitude of those who suffered at their hands.
Although the Common Core and C3 Framework highlight literacy and inquiry as central goals for social studies, they do not offer guidelines, assessments, or curriculum resources. This practical guide presents six research-tested historical investigations along with all corresponding teaching materials and tools that have improved the historical thinking and argumentative writing of academically diverse students. Each investigation integrates reading, analysis, planning, composing, and reflection into a writing process that results in an argumentative history essay. Primary sources have been modified to allow struggling readers access to the material. Web links to original unmodified primary sources are also provided, along with other sources to extend investigations. The authors include sample student essays from each investigation to illustrate the progress of two different learners and explain how to support students' development. Each chapter includes these helpful sections: Historical Background, Literacy Practices Students Will Learn, How to Teach This Investigation, How Might Students Respond?, Student Writing and Teacher Feedback, Lesson Plans and Materials.
'The story of a lesser known - but perhaps the greatest - escape of Second World War prisoners has been told in a new book.' The Scotsman 'This is undeniably history as it should be told and a thundering good read.' History of War Magazine Oflag VI-B, Warburg, Germany: On the night of 30 August 1942 - 'Zero Night' - 40 officers from Britain, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa staged the most audacious mass escape of the Second World War. It was the first 'Great Escape' - but instead of tunnelling, the escapers boldly went over the huge perimeter fences using wooden scaling contraptions. This was the notorious 'Warburg Wire Job', described by fellow prisoner and fighter ace Douglas Bader as 'the most brilliant escape conception of this war'. Months of meticulous planning and secret training hung in the balance during three minutes of mayhem as prisoners charged the camp's double perimeter fences. Telling this remarkable story in full for the first time, historian Mark Felton brilliantly evokes the suspense of the escape itself and the adventures of those who eluded the Germans, as well as the courage of the civilians who risked their lives to help them in enemy territory. Fantastically intimate and told with a novelist's eye for drama and detail, this is a rip-roaring adventure story, all the more thrilling for being true.
The brutal Japanese treatment of Allied POWs in WW2 has been well documented. The experiences of British, Australian and American POWs on the Burma Railway, in the mines of Formosa and in camps across the Far East, were bad enough. But the mis-treatment of those used as guinea pigs in medical experiments was in a different league. The author reveals distressing evidence of Unit 731 experiments involving US prisoners and the use of British as control groups in Northern China, Hainau Island, New Guinea and in Japan. These resulted in loss of life and extreme suffering. Perhaps equally shocking is the documentary evidence of British Government use of the results of these experiments at Porton Down in the Cold War era in concert with the US who had captured Unit 731 scientists and protected them from war crime prosecution in return for their cooperation. The author's in-depth research revealed that, not surprisingly, archives have been 'combed' of much incriminating material but enough remains to paint a thoroughly disturbing story.
This book examines the period between the unconditional surrender of Japan on 14 August 1945 and the arrival of Allied liberation forces in Japanese-occupied territories after 2 September 1945. The delay handed the Japanese a golden opportunity to set their house in order before Allied war crimes investigators arrived. After 14 August groups of Allied POWs were brutally murdered. Vast amounts of documentation concerning crimes were burned ahead of the arrival of Allied forces. POW facilities and medical experimentation installations were either abandoned or destroyed. Perhaps the greatest crimes were continuing deaths of Allied POWs from starvation, disease and ill-treatment after the Japanese surrender.The blame rests with the American authorities, and particularly General MacArthur, Supreme Allied Commander in the Pacific. MacArthur expressly forbade any Allied forces from liberating Japanese occupied territories before he had personally taken the formal Japanese surrender aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay on 2 September 1945. Vice Admiral Lord Mountbatten, Commanding Allied forces in Southeast Asia, protested against this policy, believing that pandering to MacArthur's vanity and ego would mean condemning many starving and sick prisoners to death. Deaths among British and Commonwealth POWs were significant as opposed to American POWs who were already largely liberated in the Philippines and elsewhere.MacArthur's and the American leadership's obsession with sidelining the British in Asia cost hundreds of British and Commonwealth lives, hundreds and hundreds of lives, that otherwise would have been saved if Mountbatten had been permitted to proceed with his liberation plans.
High in the Tuscan hills above Florence, an elaborate medieval castle, converted to a POW camp on Mussolini's personal orders, holds one of the most illustrious groups of prisoners in the history of warfare. The dozen or so British and Commonwealth senior officers includes three knights of the realm and two VCs. The youngest of them is 48, the oldest 63. One is missing a hand and an eye. Another suffers with a gammy hip. Against insuperable odds, these extraordinary middle-aged POWs plan a series of daring escape attempts, culminating in a complex tunnel deep beneath the castle. One rainswept night in March 1943, six men will burst from the earth beyond the castle's curtain wall and slip away. By assorted means, the three Brits, two New Zealanders and a half-Belgian aristocrat will attempt to make it to neutral Switzerland, over 200 miles away.
July 1945. Eighteen young British, Australian and New Zealand special forces from a top-secret underwater warfare unit prepare to undertake three audacious missions against the Japanese. Using XE-craft midget submarines, the raiders will creep deep behind Japanese lines to sink two huge warships off Singapore and sever two vitally important undersea communications cables. Success will hasten ultimate victory over Japan; but if any of the men are captured they can expect a gruesome execution. Can the Sea Devils overcome Japanese defences, mechanical failures, oxygen poisoning and submarine disasters to fulfil their missions? Mark Felton tells the true story of a band of young men living on raw courage, nerves and adrenalin as they attempt to pull off what could be the last great raid of World War Two.
Blood, guts, dust and hatred: the real history of the American West. Today is a Good Day to Fight covers the period from the initial penetration of the region by settlers and prospectors in the 1840s until the end of the Indian Wars in the 1890s. It explains the history of white-Indian conflict from the military point of view, showing how the United States used its army to wage terrible wars of conquest upon Native American peoples in order to take the land from them and enrich the growing nation, and how the Indians never really stood a chance in trying to defend their homelands. Highlighting the fractious and bitter relations between tribes unable and unwilling to unite in time to stave off their common enemy, it portrays the utter bitterness of the conflict between white and Indian, and how both sides resorted to increasingly foul acts of war and slaughter as the conflict progressed. A dirty, underhanded and scrappy conflict, the outrages committed by both sides fuelled bitterness and resentment that still exists in America today.
Children of the Camps: Japan's Last Forgotten Victims tells the truly heart-rending stories of Caucasian and Eurasian children who ended up imprisoned inside Japanese internment camps throughout Asia. It is written from the perspective of the survivors, who are all elderly today, and the effects that it had on their lives and families.
Survivors' testimonies run right through the book, as we follow their traumatic change of circumstance and experiences from prewar privilege into the horrors of the internment camps and finally the uncertainties of the immediate postwar period when liberation often meant discovery of the loss of parents.
The Japanese treatment of Allied children was as harsh and murderous as that of their parents and military POWs, but this whole episode has been overlooked. Children were plucked from comfortable colonial lives and forced to mature hastily in terrible circumstances, where survival became a daily game, and where their lives were constantly threatened by disease, starvation and physical abuse.returncharacterreturncharacterMany of these children were separated from their parents, or they saw their families destroyed by the Japanese. Most witnessed almost daily episodes of bestial violence that no child ever should see, and the entire cumulative experience has had a deep and lasting effect into their adult lives. They are among the last victims of Japanese aggression, and even over 60 years later many carry the mental and physical scars of that atrocious episode.
This disturbing book reveals the extent of the truly shocking activities of the Kempeitai, Japan's feared military and secret police. The book opens by explaining the origins, organization and roles of the Kempeitai apparatus, which exercised virtually unlimited power throughout the Japanese Empire. The author reveals their criminal and collaborationist networks, which extorted huge sums of money from hapless citizens and businesses. They ran the Allied POW gulag system which treated captives with merciless and murderous brutality. Other Kempeitai activities included biological and chemical experiments on live subjects, the Maruta vivisection campaign and widespread slave labour, including 'Comfort Women' drawn from all races. Their record of reprisals against military and civilians was unrelenting. For example, Colonel Doolittle's raid on Tokyo in 1942 resulted in a campaign of revenge not just against captured airmen but thousands of Chinese civilians. Their actions amounted to genocide on a grand scale.The author backs up his text with first hand testimonies from those survivors who suffered at the hands of this evil organization. He examines how the guilty were brought to justice and the resulting claims for compensation. As a result Japan's Gestapo provides comprehensive evidence of the ruthlessness of the Kempeitai against the white and Asian peoples under their control.
Holocaust Heroes is an inspiring book that examines the incredible--yet tragic--examples of Jewish resistance in ghettos and concentration camps during the days of the Nazis' "Final Solution." The Warsaw Uprising during the spring of 1944 is the most infamous rebellion, but there were other occasions of Jews and other prisoners fighting back--often with stunning results--against their murderers via the armed Jewish resistance. Destroying gas chambers, efforts to take over camps, and escaping en masse were just some of the brave methods attempted to stop the machinery of the Holocaust throughout Poland and the Ukraine. In virtually every case, the brave men and women who rebelled against their captors, paid dearly with their lives. Holocaust Heroes recounts the stories of these individuals who fought against victimization and acted with bravery, resourcefulness, and resistance to fight against their tragic fate. An important and original addition to the bibliography of the Holocaust, these stories are uplifting, inspiring, and profoundly moving.
The Author, who lives in Shanghai, sets out to demonstrate that the British military has been at the forefront of many of the great changes that have swept China over the last two centuries. He devotes chapters to the various wars, military adventures and rebellions that regularly punctuated Sino/British relationships since the 1st Opium War 1839-1842. This classic example of Imperial intervention saw the establishment of Hong Kong and Shanghai as key trading centres. The Second Opium War and the Taiping and Boxer Rebellions saw the advancement of British influence despite determined but unsuccessful efforts by the Chinese to loosen the grip of Western domination. The Royal Navy's might ensured that, by 'gunboat diplomacy', trading rights and new posts were established and great fortunes made. But in the 1940s the British grossly underestimated Japanese military might and intentions with disastrous results. After the Second World War the British returned to find that the Americans had supplanted them. The Communists' victory in the Civil War sealed British and Western fates and, while Hong Kong remained under British control until 1997, the end of British rule was almost inevitable. But the handover was a masterly piece of pragmatic capitalism and the former Colony remains an economic powerhouse with strong British influence.
While there have been many fine books covering escapes from German POW camps (The Wooden Horse, Great Escape, Colditz etc), the exploits of those POWs in Japanese captivity have been strangely neglected - until now. Of the tens of thousands of Allied personnel captured by the victorious Japanese during late 1941 and early 1942 only a small number of brave souls attempted to escape to freedom rather than suffer brutality, starvation and very possibly death as POWs. Escapers faced challenges far more daunting than those in German hands. They were Westerners in an alien, hostile land; the terrain and climate were extreme; disease was rife; their physical condition was weak; there was every chance of starvation and betrayal and, if captured, execution was a near certainty and the harshest punishment inevitable. The author draws on escape attempts from Hong Kong, Thailand, the Philippines, Borneo, China by officers and men of the British, Commonwealth and US armed forces. Few ended in freedom but all are examples of outstanding, desperate courage. This is an inspiring and uplifting book that demonstrates the best and worst of human spirit.
Even the most knowledgeable reader will be shocked by the extent of the crimes committed against servicemen and civilians revealed in this chilling new study. From the regular execution of POWs to the abandonment of survivors, Mark Felton takes a detailed look at this dark chapter in the history of the Japanese navy in World War II. Prior to this account, Japanese war crimes at sea have received relatively little attention compared to coverage of the Japanese army's barbaric conduct. Written by a longtime resident of the Far East, this new work takes into account the culture that led to such appalling atrocities. Upon publication in the UK, the book drew major news coverage.
Based on intelligence documents, personal testimonies, memoirs and
official histories, including material only declassified in 2010,
"Guarding Hitler" provides the reader with a fascinating inside
look at the secret world of Hitler's security and domestic
arrangements. The book focuses in particular on both the official
and private life of Hitler during the latter part of the war, at
the Wolfs Lair at Rastenburg, and Hitler's private residence at
Berchtesgaden, the Berghof.
"Guarding Hitler" manages to offer fresh insights into the life
and routine of the Fuhrer, and most importantly the often
indiscreet opinions, observations and activities of the 'little
people' who surrounded Hitler but whose stories have been
overshadowed by the great affairs of state.
It covers not only the plots against Hitler's life but the way
security developed as a result. His use of 'doubles' is examined as
is security while traveling by land or air.
As little has been written about the security and domestic life of Adolf Hitler, "Guarding Hitler" allows the reader to delve deeper into this previously overlooked but nonetheless fascinating aspect of the world's most infamous man.
This inspiring book examines the often incredible and nearly always tragic examples of Jewish resistance in ghettos and concentration camps during the Nazis 'Final Solution'. It shows that the Warsaw Uprising in Poland during April to May 1944 was not the only occasion of defiant opposition. Throughout the Nazis' extermination programme Jews and other prisoners fought back against their murderers, often with stunning results. The Germans were nearly always taken by surprise by the sudden emergence of armed Jewish resistance and often paid dearly. This happened in ghettos and concentration campos (including Treblinka, Auschwitz, Syrels and Sobibor) throughout Poland and the Ukraine. Some Jews tried to stop the machinery of the Holocaust by rising up and destroying the gas chambers while others bravely tried to take over an extermination camp and escape en masse. In virtually every case the brave men and women who volunteered to fight back paid with their lives. Importantly these men and women are not just portrayed as victims but also as brave and resourceful fighters and resisters against their tragic fate.These are stories that are uplifting, inspiring and often profoundly moving.
Operation Swallow is the true story of how a small group of American soldiers, inspired by a charismatic but reluctant leader named Hans Kasten, worked to save hundreds of fellow servicemen from a Nazi plan to turn Jewish prisoners of war into concentration camp slaves. It begins in the snowy forests of the Ardennes during Christmas 1944 and ends at the charnel house of Buchenwald concentration camp in spring 1945. It is a remarkable battle of wills between a young GI thrust into a leadership position he didn't want and an SS officer who will stop at nothing to complete his orders. Written from personal testimonies and official documents, it is an escape story replete with courage, sacrifice, torture, despair and salvation. Even more remarkably, it is a story that has barely been told before, a chapter of US military history that the American government tried to suppress for decades - and an uplifting story that deserves to be widely known.
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