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First to Fight: The Polish War 1939

Roger Moorhouse

$29.99

Paperback

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Bodley Head
19 September 2019
History; European history; Second World War
'This deeply researched, very well-written and penetrating book will be the standard work on the subject for many years to come' - Andrew Roberts, author of Churchill- Walking with Destiny The Second World War began on 1 September 1939, when German tanks, trucks and infantry crossed the Polish border, and the Luftwaffe began bombing Poland's cities. The Polish army fought bravely but could not withstand an attacker superior in numbers and technology; and when the Red Army invaded from the east - as agreed in the pact Hitler had concluded with Stalin - the country's fate was sealed. Poland was the first to fight the German aggressor; it would be the first to suffer the full murderous force of Nazi persecution. By the end of the Second World War, one in five of its people had perished.

The Polish campaign is the forgotten story of the Second World War. Despite prefacing many of that conflict's later horrors - the wanton targeting of civilians, indiscriminate bombing and ethnic cleansing - it is little understood, and most of what we think we know about it is Nazi propaganda, such as the myth of Polish cavalry charging German tanks with their lances. In truth, Polish forces put up a spirited defence, in the expectation that they would be assisted by their British and French allies. That assistance never came.

First to Fight is the first history of the Polish war for almost half a century. Drawing on letters, memoirs and diaries by generals and politicians, soldiers and civilians from all sides, Roger Moorhouse's dramatic account of the military events is entwined with a tragic human story of courage and suffering, and a dark tale of diplomatic betrayal.
By:   Roger Moorhouse
Imprint:   Bodley Head
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 153mm,  Spine: 28mm
Weight:   578g
ISBN:   9781847924612
ISBN 10:   1847924611
Pages:   400
Publication Date:   19 September 2019
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Roger Moorhouse is an historian and author specialising in modern German history. He is the co-author, with Norman Davies, of Microcosm- Portrait of a Central European City, and the author of Killing Hitler- The Third Reich and the Plots Against the Fuhrer and The Devil's Allicance-Hitler's Pact with Stalin.

Reviews for First to Fight: The Polish War 1939

An important book. Roger Moorhouse has a wonderful knack of reminding us about the parts of the Second World War that we are in danger of forgetting -- Dan Snow [A] fascinating book... Moorhouse has mastered a large body of material... this is...a very valuable book, as it gathers a mass of detail into a lucid narrative for general readers -- Noel Malcolm * Sunday Telegraph * Moorhouse's book remedies that gap [in history of The Polish War], weaving together archival material, first-hand accounts, perceptive analysis and heartbreaking descriptions of Poland's betrayal, defeat and dismemberment * Economist * [A] chilling, indignant narrative... Moorhouse has expertly laid bare...[the] truth -- Roger Boyes * The Times * We tend to overlook the war that Hitler won , but Roger Moorhouse brilliantly underlines its crucial importance for the future course of the Second World War. This deeply researched, very well-written and penetrating book will be the standard work on the subject for many years to come -- Andrew Roberts, author of 'Churchill: Walking with Destiny'


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