Richard F. Newcomb
In July 1945, the heavy cruiser "U.S.S. Indianapolis" put in at the Pacific atoll of Tinian to deliver a rare cargo: several hundred pounds of uranium, the makings of the two atomic bombs that only a few weeks later would be dropped on Japan. Having discharged this duty, the "Indianapolis" made way for Guam, and thence for the Philippines, in waters that the high command had assured its captain were safe. En route, it crossed the path of a Japanese submarine, which fired six torpedoes and sank the cruiser, killing hundreds of sailors--some of whom were devoured by sharks--and leaving others to float in the open ocean for days. Almost as soon as the survivors of the "Indianapolis" were rescued, the cruiser's unfortunate captain, an Annapolis graduate named Charles Butler McVay III, was court-martialed for his alleged failure to practice evasive maneuvers in enemy waters. Eventually exonerated of all but one charge, McVay still could not escape blame for the ship's loss, and he killed himself in 1968. Richard Newcomb's "Abandon Ship!", first published in 1958, brought McVay's sad case to the American public's attention with a vigorous you-are-there account that depicts the miscalculations--and willful misrepresentations--that condemned the "Indianapolis". The case was recently reopened thanks to the efforts of McVay's family and a bright middle-school student who looked into the matter as a class project. As a result, the scapegoated captain's name has been cleared. In this edition, McVay's case is updated by the noted true-crime author Peter Maas, whose arguments in McVay's favor add to Newcomb's original findings. Superb as historical journalism, the book is also a fascinating document in the annals of military justice. "--Gregory McNamee"
|Aces Against Japan: The American Aces Speak
Forty fighter aces who battled Japanese pilots in the skies over the Pacific and Asia recount their experiences. Heart-stopping tales of high-speed aerial combat, bravery, survival, and the thrill of total victory.
|Aces of the Rising Sun 1937-1945
This book combines Aircraft of the Aces 13: 'Japanese Army Air Force Aces 1937-45' and Aircraft of the Aces 22: 'Imperial Japanese Navy Aces 1937-45'. Very little has been published in English on the air arms of the Japanese Army and Navy, and the pilots who flew for them. Yet between 1937 and 1945, 150 JAAF and 21 Imperial Japanese Navy pilots achieved 'ace' status in eight years of near-constant warfare. This book relates the experiences of both air forces, revealing how the JAAF aces achieved their scores flying over terrain ranging from the Mongolian plains to the jungles of New Guinea, and how the IJN pilots drew on their experience of fighting over Manchuria, China and Mongolia to take on Allied forces in the Pacific
The campaign in North Africa between September 1940 and May 1943 holds not only an enduring fascination for postwar generations; but also a perhaps unique degree of nostalgia for some surviving participants. The campaign was no less costly in terms of human lives and material than many others; but regret at the cost is accompanied by positive memories in the minds of many veterans. This is not to suggest that the dead have been forgotten; but an almost mystical bond nevertheless exists, even between former enemies, amongst veterans of the desert campaign. Gordon Williamson examines the history, organisation and uniforms of Rommel's Afrikakorps.
|Agent 146 : The True Story of a Nazi Spy in America
The spellbinding autobiography of one of the only Nazi spies to reach American soil-Erich Gimpel-who was assigned by the Führer himself to sabotage America's atomic program.
|Air Force Combat Units of World War II
This in an excellent book for researching Combat units in WWII. It gives you information on where the units were based,who they were commanded by, what Squadrons were in which Groups and campaigns they were involved in. There is a short written narrative on the types of missions flown. A must have research aid. It is used by Air Force Historians as reference material.
|Air Force badges and insignia of World War 2
|Air War Europa: America's Air War Against Germany in Europe and North Africa 1942-1945 : Chronology
Eric Hammel provides an excellent reference source to the European Air War. The main body of the text chronicals events from war's beginning to Germany's surrender on May 9, 1945. The basic concept is straightforward: to provide a basic sketch of daily operations in Europe, the Mediterranean and North Africa. Of particular note is Hammel's Introductory chapter, where he examines the evolution of American fighter doctrine (particularly as it relates to the "Self-defending bomber") and his pinpoint analysis of America's strategic bombing initiative. Despite its obviously reference orientation, nothing Hammel writes makes for dry reading. recommended! For more military aviation reviews see the "WWII Aviation Booklist" at: http://www.ampsc.com/~prophet/booklist.html
|Alan Turing: the Enigma
Alan Turing died in 1954, but the themes of his life epitomize the turn of the millennium. A pure mathematician from a tradition that prided itself on its impracticality, Turing laid the foundations for modern computer science, writes Andrew Hodges: <blockquote>Alan had proved that there was no "miraculous machine" that could solve all mathematical problems, but in the process he had discovered something almost equally miraculous, the idea of a universal machine that could take over the work of "any" machine.</blockquote> During World War II, Turing was the intellectual star of Bletchley Park, the secret British cryptography unit. His work cracking the German's Enigma machine code was, in many ways, the first triumph of computer science. And Turing died because his identity as a homosexual was incompatible with cold-war ideas of security, implemented with machines and remorseless logic: "It was his own invention, and it killed the goose that laid the golden eggs." Andrew Hodges's remarkable insight weaves Turing's mathematical and computer work with his personal life to produce one of the best biographies of our time, and the basis of the Derek Jacobi movie "Breaking the Code". Hodges has the mathematical knowledge to explain the intellectual significance of Turing's work, while never losing sight of the human and social picture: <blockquote>In this sense his life belied his work, for it could not be contained by the discrete state machine. At every stage his life raised questions about the connection (or lack of it) between the mind and the body, thought and action, intelligence and operations, science and society, the individual and history.</blockquote> And Hodges admits what all biographers know, but few admit, about their subjects: "his inner code remains unbroken." Alan Turing is still an enigma. "--Mary Ellen Curtin"
|An Album of Memories : Personal Histories from the Greatest Generation
Tom Brokaw has turned his popular book "The Greatest Generation" into a trilogy. After that first success came "The Greatest Generation Speaks". Now there's "An Album of Memories", a collection of letters and photos sent to Brokaw by readers who grew up during the Depression and came of age during World War II. "An Album of Memories" simply overflows with nostalgia. "We were privileged to grow up in a time when honor, truth, loyalty, duty, and patriotism were real and meant something," writes Robert Cromer. Another correspondent, Douglas G. Fish, describes his own wartime experience--and that of many others--with an elegant simplicity: "I went in the service as a boy and came out a man." There are poignant letters from the dead. One reader submitted this one, sent home in 1942: "Dear Mom, I got your package and Dot's letter today. Boy, the cookies were swell, all the boys send their thanks. Not a one of them was crushed either." Almost exactly a year later, the writer was killed on a bombing run. Another man shares "the last letter my father wrote, three days before he died." It reads: "Tomorrow is D-Day at Iwo Jima--right on Japan's front doorstep--we will go in and lay nets sometime during the assault.... I have faith in God to help us through to victory but am prepared to die for America and face our Lord if He so wills it." The son who sent this letter to Brokaw wasn't even born until after his father had been killed: "I read [this letter] every year on Memorial Day, cry a lot, and think of what a hero he was," he writes. It's hard not to agree with that assessment, and it applies to so many of those who fought bravely in Europe or the Pacific, as well as those who maintained the home front. All of them have their say in this attractive volume. "--John J. Miller"
|Allied Photo Reconnaisance of World War II
The first use of aircraft for military purposes was in a reconnaissance role. As early as 1789 hydrogen balloons were employed in artillery spotting during the Franco-Prussian War. In the 20th century the airplane became the primary platform for aerial reconnaissance, and the experiments of earlier years developed into sophisticated strategic operations. This book details several of the most important operations from the perspective of photo-reconnaissance, including Monte Cassino, the Normandy landings, and the hunt for and destruction of Germany's V-weapons. Illustrated with 200 b/w original air reconnaissance photographs and maps.
Anthony John Watts
|American Intelligence and the German Resistance to Hitler: A Documentary History
Scrupulously edited and researched, this book provides fascinating newly declassified documentary evidence on a largely neglected aspect of World War II. It is impossible to fully understand the Third Reich and the Roosevelt Administration at war without carefully studying this monumental contribution to twentieth-century history.
|American Military Patch Guide
J. L. Pete Morgan, Ted A. Thurman, J.L. Pete Morgan
8 x 11 & The single most complete source on United States military patches. Color plates illustrate and identify more than 2,000 patches and tabs, from World War II to the present. Promises to become the definitive work on U.S. Army shoulder sleeve insignia and patches.
|American diplomacy during the Second World War, 1941-1945
Incorporating recent scholarship and broad treatment of every region affected by the war, the focus is on the interaction of the United States, Great Britain, and the Soviet Union, with attention to such areas as the Middle East, Latin America, and Indochina. -- (Softcover)
|Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl
A beloved classic since its initial publication in 1947, this vivid, insightful journal is a fitting memorial to the gifted Jewish teenager who died at Bergen-Belsen, Germany, in 1945. Born in 1929, Anne Frank received a blank diary on her 13th birthday, just weeks before she and her family went into hiding in Nazi-occupied Amsterdam. Her marvelously detailed, engagingly personal entries chronicle 25 trying months of claustrophobic, quarrelsome intimacy with her parents, sister, a second family, and a middle-aged dentist who has little tolerance for Anne's vivacity. The diary's universal appeal stems from its riveting blend of the grubby particulars of life during wartime (scant, bad food; shabby, outgrown clothes that can't be replaced; constant fear of discovery) and candid discussion of emotions familiar to every adolescent (everyone criticizes me, no one sees my real nature, when will I be loved?). Yet Frank was no ordinary teen: the later entries reveal a sense of compassion and a spiritual depth remarkable in a girl barely 15. Her death epitomizes the madness of the Holocaust, but for the millions who meet Anne through her diary, it is also a very individual loss. "--Wendy Smith"
|The Armies of Rommel
Brilliant tactician, daring commander, and strong-willed leader, Field Marshal Erwin Rommel's battlefield maneuvers remain unsurpassed. A noted historian probes the legendary fighter's military life, forces, armaments, and strategies. With a wealth of archival photographs. "...describe(s) each and every posting and its units...and...Rommel's actions and reasons. Everywhere you turn...there are detailed tables and descriptions of organizations and equipment....diverse and voluminous knowledge of the German "Wehrmacht"...Recommended reading and also excellent as a reference source..."--"Axis Europa".
|An Army at Dawn : The War in Africa, 1942-1943, Volume One of the Liberation Trilogy
In "An Army at Dawn,", a comprehensive look at the 1942-1943 Allied invasion of North Africa, author Rick Atkinson posits that the campaign was, along with the battles of Stalingrad and Midway, where the "Axis ... forever lost the initiative" and the "fable of 3rd Reich invincibility was dissolved." Additionally, it forestalled a premature and potentially disastrous cross-channel invasion of France and served as a grueling "testing ground" for an as-yet inexperienced American army. Lastly, by relegating Great Britain to what Atkinson calls the status of "junior partner" in the war effort, North Africa marked the beginning of American geopolitical hegemony. Although his prose is occasionally overwrought, Atkinson's account is a superior one, an agile, well-informed mix of informed strategic overview and intimate battlefield-and-barracks anecdotes. (Tobacco-starved soldiers took to smoking cigarettes made of toilet paper and eucalyptus leaves.) Especially interesting are Atkinson's straightforward accounts of the many "feuds, tiffs and spats" among British and American commanders, politicians, and strategists and his honest assessments of their--and their soldiers'--performance and behavior, for better and for worse. This is an engrossing, extremely accessible account of a grim and too-often overlooked military campaign. "--H. O'Billovich"
|Atlas of World War II
Barrie Pitt, Frances Pitt
|August 1944 : Campaign for France
|Auschwitz Chronicle: 1939-1945
I have always advocated keeping a wide array of unusual and telling reference works on hand. This is one of the most chilling: it is a translation of original German records, mixed with eyewitness accounts, compiled by the former research head of the Auschwitz Museum. The memoranda and ledger entries dryly tell the horrors of industrialized, government-sanctioned, popularly supported mass murder. In a sense, this is one of the most truthful works about the 20th century. Running over 800 pages, you can slam someone who "doubts" the Holocaust happened over the head with it.
|Auschwitz and the Allies
When Hitler announced that the result of the war in Europe would be "the complete annihilation of the Jews," he did so in 1942, not only in public, but before an enormous crowd in Berlin. The Allies heard, but astonishingly, they did not listen. Why? In 1944, Allied reconnaissance pilots, searching out industrial targets in the area, repeatedly photographed Auschwitz. The pictures, apparently overlooked by the Allies, were routinely filed in government archives and not examined until 1979. Why? First-hand reports on the horrors of the death camps came to the West by 1944 in the person of two escaped Auschwitz prisoners. Their testimonies, and those of subsequent escapees, were either ignored or dismissed. Why? Despite the fact that, the same year, Churchill himself had ordered feasibility studies for air strikes on Auschwitz, the RAF not only did nothing, but eventually passed the buck to the Americans, who also did nothing. Why?
|Axis Submarine Successes, 1939-1945
Anthony John Watts