The rise of George Villiers from minor gentry to royal power seemed to defy gravity. Becoming gentleman of the royal bedchamber in 1615, the young gallant enraptured James, Britain’s first Stuart king, royal adoration reaching such an intensity that the king declared he wanted the courtier to become his ‘wife’. For a decade, Villiers was at the king’s side – at court, on state occasions and in bed, right up to James’s death in March 1625.
Almost immediately, Villiers’ many enemies accused him of poisoning the king. A parliamentary investigation was launched, and scurrilous pamphlets and ballads circulated London’s streets. But the charges came to nothing, and were relegated to a historical footnote.
Now, new historical scholarship suggests that a deadly combination of hubris and vulnerability did indeed drive Villiers to kill the man who made him. It may have been by accident – the application of a quack remedy while the king was weakened by a malarial attack. But there is compelling evidence that Villiers, overcome by ambition and frustrated by James’s passive approach to government, poisoned him.
In The King’s Assassin, acclaimed author Benjamin Wooley examines this remarkable, even tragic story. Combining vivid characterization and a strong narrative with historical scholarship and forensic investigation, Woolley tells the story of King James’s death, and of the captivating figure at its centre. What emerges is a compelling portrait of a royal favourite whose charisma overwhelmed those around him and, ultimately, himself.
From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Khrushchev: The Man and his Era.
This is the definitive biography on one of the most important and controversial figures of the 20th century. Drawing on interviews with Gorbachev himself, transcripts and documents from the Russian archives, and interviews with Kremlin aides and adversaries, as well as foreign leaders, Taubman’s intensely personal portrait extends to Gorbachev’s remarkable marriage to a woman he deeply loved, and to the family that they raised together. Nuanced and poignant, yet unsparing and honest, this sweeping account has all the amplitude of a great Russian novel.90 illustrations
When Mikhail Gorbachev became its leader in March 1985, the USSR was still one of the world’s two superpowers. By the end of his tenure six years later, the Communist system was dismantled, the cold war was over and, on 25th December 1991, the Soviet Union itself ceased to exist. While not solely responsible for this remarkable upheaval, he set decisive changes in motion. Assessments of Gorbachev could not be more polarised. In the West, he is regarded as a hero. In Russia, he is widely hated by those who blame him for the collapse of the USSR. Admirers marvel at this vision and courage. Detractors, including many of his Kremlin comrades, have accused him of everything from naivete to treason.
The momentous new book from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Gulag and Iron Curtain.
In 1932-33, nearly four million Ukrainians died of starvation, having been deliberately deprived of food. It is one of the most devastating episodes in the history of the twentieth century. With unprecedented authority and detail, Red Famine investigates how this happened, who was responsible, and what the consequences were. It is the fullest account yet published of these terrible events.
The book draws on a mass of archival material and first-hand testimony only available since the end of the Soviet Union, as well as the work of Ukrainian scholars all over the world. It includes accounts of the famine by those who survived it, describing what human beings can do when driven mad by hunger. It shows how the Soviet state ruthlessly used propaganda to turn neighbours against each other in order to expunge supposedly 'anti-revolutionary' elements. It also records the actions of extraordinary individuals who did all they could to relieve the suffering.
The famine was rapidly followed by an attack on Ukraine's cultural and political leadership - and then by a denial that it had ever happened at all. Census reports were falsified and memory suppressed. Some western journalists shamelessly swallowed the Soviet line; others bravely rejected it, and were undermined and harassed. The Soviet authorities were determined not only that Ukraine should abandon its national aspirations, but that the country's true history should be buried along with its millions of victims.
Red Famine, a triumph of scholarship and human sympathy, is a milestone in the recovery of those memories and that history. At a moment of crisis between Russia and Ukraine, it also shows how far the present is shaped by the past.
As Germany and then Japan surrendered in 1945 there was a tremendous hope that a new and much better world could be created from the moral and physical ruins of the conflict. Instead, the combination of the huge power of the USA and USSR and the near-total collapse of most of their rivals created a unique, grim new environment: the Cold War.
For over forty years the demands of the Cold War shaped the life of almost all of us. There was no part of the world where East and West did not, ultimately, demand a blind and absolute allegiance, and nowhere into which the West and East did not reach. Countries as remote from each other as Korea, Angola and Cuba were defined by their allegiances. Almost all civil wars became proxy conflicts for the superpowers. Europe was seemingly split in two indefinitely.
Arne Westad's remarkable new book is the first to have the distance from these events and the ambition to create a convincing, powerful narrative of the Cold War. The book is genuinely global in its reach and captures the dramas and agonies of a period always overshadowed by the horror of nuclear war and which, for millions of people, was not 'cold' at all: a time of relentless violence, squandered opportunities and moral failure.
This is a book of extraordinary scope and daring. It is conventional to see the first half of the 20th century as a nightmare and the second half as a reprieve. Westad shows that for much of the world the second half was by most measures even worse.
A new approach to ideas about war, from one of the UK's leading strategic thinkers.
In 1912 Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote a short story about a war fought from underwater submersibles that included the sinking of passenger ships. It was dismissed by the British admirals of the day, not on the basis of technical feasibility, but because sinking civilian ships was not something that any civilised nation would do.
The reality of war often contradicts expectations, less because of some fantastic technical or engineering dimension, but more because of some human, political, or moral threshold that we had never imagined would be crossed.
As Lawrence Freedman shows, ideas about the causes of war and strategies for its conduct have rich and varied histories which shape predictions about the future. Freedman shows how looking at how the future of war was conceived about in the past (and why this was more often than not wrong) can put into perspective current thinking about future conflicts.
The Future of War - which takes us from preparations for the world wars, through the nuclear age and the civil wars which became the focus for debate after the end of the Cold War, to present preoccupations with hybrid and cyber warfare - is filled with fascinating insights from one of the most brilliant military and strategic historians of his generation.
Global in perspective and covering over four million years of history, this accessible volume provides a chronological account of both the development of the human race and the order in which modern societies have made discoveries about their ancient past. Beginning deep in prehistory, it takes in all the great archaeological sites of the world as it advances to the present day.
A masterful combination of succinct analysis and driving narrative, Archaeology: The Whole Story also addresses the questions that inevitably arise as we gradually learn more about the history of our species: what are we? Where did we come from? What inspired us to start building, writing and all the other activities that we traditionally regard as exclusively human? A concluding section explains how we know what we know: for example, how seventeen prehistoric shrines were discovered around Stonehenge using magnetometers, ground-penetrating radars, and 3D laser scanners; and how DNA analysis enabled us to identify some bones discovered beneath a car park in Leicester as the remains of a fifteenth-century king of England.
Written by an international team of archaeological experts and richly illustrated throughout, Archaeology: The Whole Story offers an unparalleled insight into the origins of humankind.
Weird, decadent, degenerate, racially mixed, superstitious, theocratic, effeminate, and even hyper-literate, Byzantium has long been regarded by many as one big curiosity. According to Voltaire, it represented "a worthless collection of miracles, a disgrace for the human mind" for Hegel it was "a disgusting picture of imbecility."
A Cabinet of Byzantine Curiosities will reinforce these old prejudices, while also stimulating a deeper interest among readers in one of history's most interesting civilizations. Many of the zanier tales and trivia that are collected here revolve around the political and religious life of Byzantium. Thus, stories of saints, relics, and their miracles - from the hilarious to the revolting - abound. Byzantine bureaucracy (whence the adjective "Byzantine"), court scandals, and elaborate penal code are world famous. And what would Byzantium be without its eunuchs, whose ambiguous gender produced odd and risible outcomes in different contexts?
The book also contains sections on daily life that are equally eye-opening, including food (from aphrodisiacs to fermented fish sauce), games such as polo and acrobatics, and obnoxious views of foreigners and others (e.g., Germans, Catholics, Arabs, dwarves). But lest we overlook Byzantium's more honorable contributions to civilization, also included are some of the marvels of Byzantine science and technology, from the military (flamethrowers and hand grenades) to the theatrical ("elevator" thrones, roaring mechanical lions) and medical (catheters and cures, some bizarre). This vast assortment of historical anomaly and absurdity sheds vital light on one of history's most obscure and orthodox empires.
One of the greatest commanders of the ancient world brought vividly to life: Hannibal, the brilliant general who successfully crossed the Alps with his war elephants and brought Rome to its knees.
Hannibal Barca of Carthage, born 247 BC, was one of the great generals of the ancient world. His father, Hamilcar, was also a great strategist and master tactician who imposed Carthaginian rule over much of present-day Spain. After Hamilcar led the Carthaginian forces against Rome in the First Punic War, Hannibal followed in his father’s footsteps, leading Carthage in the Second Punic War.
From the time he was a teenager, Hannibal fought against Rome. He is famed for leading Carthage’s army across north Africa, into Spain, along the Mediterranean coast, and then crossing the Alps with his army and war elephants. Hannibal won victories in northern Italy by outmaneuvering his Roman adversaries and defeated a larger Roman army at the battle of Cannae in 216 BC. Unable to force Rome to capitulate, he was eventually forced to leave Italy and return to Carthage when a savvy Roman general named Scipio invaded north Africa. Hannibal and Scipio fought an epic battle at Zama, which Hannibal lost. The terms of surrender were harsh and many Carthaginians blamed Hannibal, eventually forcing him into exile until his death.
To this day Hannibal is still regarded as a military genius. Napoleon, George Patton, and Norman Schwarzkopf, Jr. are only some of the generals who studied and admired him. His strategy and tactics are still taught in military academies. He is one of the figures of the ancient world whose life and exploits never fail to impress. Historian Patrick N. Hunt has led archeological expeditions in the Alps and elsewhere to study Hannibal’s achievements. Now he brings Hannibal’s incredible story to life in this riveting and dramatic book.
Gaius Marius was one of the most remarkable and significant figures of the late Roman Republic. At a time when power tended to be restricted to a clique of influential families, he rose from relatively humble origins to attain the top office of consul. He even went on to hold the post an unprecedented seven times. His political career flourished but was primarily built on military success.
First serving in the Numantine War in Spain, he later rose to high command and brought a long-running war in North Africa to a successful conclusion, bringing the Numidian King Jurgurtha back in chains. His return was timely as northern barbarian tribes threatened Italy and had previously defeated several Roman armies. Marius reformed and retrained the Republic's forces and decisively defeated the invaders that had easily overpowered his predecessors.
Marius' subsequent career was primarily that of an elder statesman, but it was dominated by his rivalry with his erstwhile subordinate, Sulla, which ultimately led to the latter's bloody coup. Marius, once hailed as the savior of Rome, eventually became a desperate fugitive, literally fleeing for his life from his pursuers. However, after several harrowing brushes with death, Marius seized an opportunity to return to Rome and mete out justice to his enemies, which tarnished his once-enviable reputation.
The dramatic story of the relationship between the world's three largest economies, one that is shaping the future of us all, by one of the foremost experts on east AsiaFor more than half a century, American power in the Pacific has successfully kept the peace. But it has also cemented the tensions in the toxic rivalry between China and Japan, consumed with endless history wars and entrenched political dynasties.
Now, the combination of these forces with Donald Trump's unpredictable impulses and disdain for America's old alliances threatens to upend the region, and accelerate the unravelling of the postwar order. If the United States helped lay the postwar foundations for modern Asia, now the anchor of the global economy, Asia's Reckoning will reveal how that structure is now crumbling.
With unrivalled access to archives in the US and Asia, as well as many of the major players in all three countries, Richard McGregor has written a tale which blends the tectonic shifts in diplomacy with the domestic political trends and personalities driving them. It is a story not only of an overstretched America, but also of the rise and fall and rise of the great powers of Asia.
The confrontational course on which China and Japan have increasingly set themselves is no simple spat between neighbors. And the fallout would be a political and economic tsunami, affecting manufacturing centers, trade routes, and political capitals on every continent.
In 1918 a few daring low-ranking Australian infantrymen, alone among all the armies on the Western Front, initiated stealth raids without orders. These stealth raiders killed Germans, captured prisoners and advanced the line, sometimes by thousands of yards. They were held in high regard by other men of the lower ranks and were feared by the Germans facing them.
Who were these stealth raiders and why did they do it? What made Australian soldiers take on this independent and personal type of warfare? Using their firsthand accounts, as well as official archives and private records, Lucas Jordan pieces their stories together.
A gripping account of the crucial summer on the Western Front, Stealth Raiders- A Few Daring Men in 1918 considers the stealth raiders' war experience and training, the unprecedented conditions at the front and the morale of the German Army in 1918. Lucas Jordan argues that bush skills, and the bush ethos central to Australian civil society - with its emphasis on resourcefulness and initiative - made stealth raids a distinctively Australian phenomenon.
Major-General Gordon Bennett played a decisive role in the defence of Malaya and Singapore in World War II. A colourful character, known to sport a straw hat with a rainbow scarf tied around it, his officers found him at times abrasive and cocky, but he was also known as an outstanding commander. He is, however, best remembered for his escape by boat from Singapore in the dying days of the Japanese invasion, which led to the imprisonment of 15,000 Australian servicemen.
Bennett's decision to leave his men to their fate is one of the most controversial episodes in the fall of the island. Though he was exonerated by Prime Minister John Curtin on his return to Australia, 8th Division's commander was never forgiven by the military's top brass for what many viewed as a clear case of desertion. While Bennett alone cannot be blamed for the defeat - there were many other factors, including Britain's military failings in both tactics and defence - he was and remains a ready scapegoat
In this vivid and comprehensive history of the 8th Division and its stoic force of fighting men, Roger Maynard investigates their conflicted leader, whose reputation as an outstanding soldier was shattered by war's end. He also examines Bennett's legacy through the prism of today's military standards to establish whether he was, indeed, a hero or deserter.
It was arguably the greatest fighting force in the entirety of the Great War. They were the very best: hardened, fearless, decorated, cocky fighting men, all veterans of Gallipoli and the Western Front. Yet this elite force secretly assembled in London in late 1917 remains an enigma even today.
Barry Stone tells the story of these Australian, British, New Zealand, Canadian and South African men who were sent to the ethnic powder keg of the Caucasus to preserve British interests. They matched wits with German spies and assassins. They fought the Turks. They dined with sheiks, outraged local mullahs, forged unlikely alliances with Russian Cossacks, helped Armenians flee genocide, and saved the lives of thousands of starving Persians.
This book is a rarity: a story set against the backdrop of war, filled not with bloodshed but with acts of kindness and selflessness; a triumph of the human spirit.
Most people think of Australia's convict past as decidedly English. Anne McMahon tells the story of the Irish prisoners roped into the British transportation scheme.
Poverty, civil unrest and overcrowded prisons in Ireland from 1823 to 1837 led to thousands of men being sentenced to transportation to Australia. They were confined mainly to hulks moored in Cork Harbour and at Kinstown near Dublin. Violence, illness and meagre rations were the norm.
Anne McMahon's vivid descriptions of what it was really like to endure transportation-squalid living conditions and long sea voyages-reveals the Irish convict experience.
Revolution, the fourth volume of Peter Ackroyd's enthralling History of England begins in 1688 with a revolution and ends in 1815 with a famous victory.
In it, Ackroyd takes readers from William of Orange's accession following the Glorious Revolution to the Regency, when the flamboyant Prince of Wales ruled in the stead of his mad father, George III, and England was - again - at war with France, a war that would end with the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo.
Late Stuart and Georgian England marked the creation of the great pillars of the English state. The Bank of England was founded, as was the stock exchange, the Church of England was fully established as the guardian of the spiritual life of the nation and parliament became the sovereign body of the nation with responsibilities and duties far beyond those of the monarch. It was a revolutionary era in English letters, too, a time in which newspapers first flourished and the English novel was born.
It was an era in which coffee houses and playhouses boomed, gin flowed freely and in which shops, as we know them today, began to proliferate in our towns and villages. But it was also a time of extraordinary and unprecedented technological innovation, which saw England utterly and irrevocably transformed from a country of blue skies and farmland to one of soot and steel and coal.
Where have all the fishballs gone? From a journalist deeply attuned to the subtleties of Hong Kong life comes Borrowed Spaces, a chronicle of the ways in which the grassroots citizens of Hong Kong reshape their city to make up for the shortcomings of their bureaucratic government. Mango trees sprouting on roundabouts, fishball stalls and neon signs- these are just some of the Hong Kong icons that are casualties in the struggle to reclaim public spaces. Christopher DeWolf explores the history of Hong Kong's urban growth through the daily tug of war between the people's needs to express themselves and government regulations.
Teenage activists turned politicians, multi-millionaire super tutors and artists fighting censorship - these are the stories of Generation HK. From radically different backgrounds yet with a common legacy, having grown up in post-handover Hong Kong, these young people have little attachment to the era of British colonial rule or today's China. Instead, they see themselves as Hong Kongers, an identity both reinforced and threatened by the rapid expansion of Beijing's influence. Amid great political and social uncertainty, Generation HK is trying to build a brighter future. Theirs is a truly captivating coming-of-age story that reflects the bitter struggles beneath the gleaming facade of modern Hong Kong.
Since 1997, Hong Kong's economic growth rate has dropped sharply, inequality has increased, and corruption has found its way to the highest levels of government. These developments, Simon Cartledge argues, can be attributed to the city's 'pro-business' constitution, which has held back change and led to the rise of an anti-establishment, localist opposition. A System Apart traces the interplay of Hong Kong's economy, society, politics and relations with the rest of China over the last twenty years. It concludes that the city needs to remodel its political structure and make its government accountable to its citizens, as was promised when the UK returned the territory to China two decades ago.
This is the untold story of how some of Germany's top aristocrats contributed to Hitler's secret diplomacy during the Third Reich, providing a direct line to their influential contacts and relations across Europe - especially in Britain, where their contacts included the press baron and Daily Mail owner Lord Rothermere and the future King Edward VIII.
Using previously unexplored sources from Britain, Germany, the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, and the USA, Karina Urbach unravels the story of top-level go-betweens such as the Duke of Coburg, grandson of Queen Victoria, and the seductive Stephanie von Hohenlohe, who rose from a life of poverty in Vienna to become a princess and an intimate of Adolf Hitler. As Urbach shows, Coburg and other senior aristocrats were tasked with some of Germany's most secret foreign policy missions from the First World War onwards, culminating in their role as Hitler's trusted go-betweens, as he readied Germany for conflict during the 1930s - and later, in the Second World War.
Tracing what became of these high-level go-betweens in the years after the Nazi collapse in 1945 - from prominent media careers to sunny retirements in Marbella - the book concludes with an assessment of their overall significance in the foreign policy of the Third Reich.
'Never before had the world seen four such giants co-existing. Sometimes friends, more often enemies, always rivals, these four men together held Europe in the hollow of their hands.'
Four great princes - Henry VIII of England, Francis I of France, Charles V of Spain and Suleiman the Magnificent - were born within a single decade. Each looms large in his country's history and, in this book, John Julius Norwich broadens the scope and shows how, against the rich background of the Renaissance and destruction of the Reformation, their wary obsession with one another laid the foundations for modern Europe. Individually, each man could hardly have been more different - from the scandals of Henry's six wives to Charles's monasticism - but, together, they dominated the world stage.
From the Field of the Cloth of Gold, a pageant of jousting, feasting and general carousing so lavish that it nearly bankrupted both France and England, to Suleiman's celebratory pyramid of 2,000 human heads (including those of seven Hungarian bishops) after the battle of Mohacs; from Anne Boleyn's six-fingered hand (a potential sign of witchcraft) that had the pious nervously crossing themselves to the real story of the Maltese falcon, Four Princes is history at its vivid, entertaining best.
With a cast list that extends from Leonardo da Vinci to Barbarossa, and from Joanna the Mad to le roi grand-nez, John Julius Norwich offers the perfect guide to the most colourful century the world has ever known and brings the past to unforgettable life.
An explosive exposé of the man and the ideas behind the well-heeled right's relentless campaign to eliminate unions, suppress voting, privatise public education, and curb democratic majority rule.
Behind today’s headlines of billionaires taking over US government is a secretive political establishment with deep and troubling roots. The capitalist radical right has been working not simply to change who rules, but to fundamentally alter democratic governance. But billionaires did not launch this movement; a white intellectual in the embattled Jim Crow South did. This book names its true architect — Nobel Prize–winning political economist James McGill Buchanan — and dissects the operation he and his colleagues designed to alter every branch of government to disempower the majority.??
In a brilliant, engrossing narrative, Nancy MacLean shows how these ideas were forged in a last-gasp attempt to preserve the white elite's power in the wake of Brown v. Board of Education. By recasting the era's legal and social-movement successes, Buchanan developed a brilliant, if diabolical, plan to undermine the majority's ability to use its numbers to level the playing field between the rich and powerful and the rest of us.?? Corporate donors and their right-wing foundations were eager to support Buchanan's work in teaching others how to divide America into ‘makers’ and ‘takers'. And when a multibillionaire on a messianic mission, Charles Koch, discovered Buchanan, he created a vast, relentless, and multi-armed machine to carry out Buchanan's strategy.
Based on ten years of research, this revelatory work tells a chilling story of right-wing academics and big money run amok, and is a call to arms to protect the achievements of twentieth-century American self-government.
As the BBC's North America Editor, Jon Sopel has had a pretty busy time of it lately. In the 18 months it's taken for a reality star to go from laughingstock to leader of the free world, Jon has travelled the length and breadth of the United States, experiencing it from a perspective that most of us could only dream of- he has flown aboard Air Force One, interviewed President Obama and has even been described as 'a beauty' by none other than Donald Trump.
Through music, film, literature, TV and even through the food we eat and the clothes that we wear we all have a highly developed sense of what America is and through our shared, tangled history we claim a special relationship. But America today feels about as alien a country as you could imagine. It is fearful, angry and impatient for change. Reflecting on his journey across the continent to cover the most turbulent race in recent history, Jon Sopel lifts a lid on the seething resentments, profound anxieties and sheer rage that found its embodiment in a brash, unpredictable and seemingly unstoppable figure.
In this fascinating, insightful portrait of American life and politics, Jon sets out to answer our questions about a country that once stood for the grandest of dreams but which is now mired in a storm of political extremism, racial division and increasingly perverse beliefs.
An electrifying and timely book, by leading Russian expert Richard Lourie, that explores Putin's failures and whether Trump's election gives Putin extraordinarily dangerous opportunities in our mad new world.For reasons that are made clear in this book, Putin's Russia will collapse just as Imperial Russia did in 1917 and as Soviet Russia did in 1991. The only questions are when, how violently, and with how much peril for the world. The U.S. election complicates everything, including: - Putin's next land grab- Exploitations of the Arctic- Cyber-espionage- Putin and China...and many more crucial topics.Putin: His Downfall and Russia's Coming Crash is an essential read for everybody bewildered and dismayed by the new world order.
'A breathtaking, magisterial panorama, telling the epic story of post-war anarchy, dying empires and rising nation states. It makes us rethink our understanding of Europe's twentieth century' David Motadel, The Times Literary Supplement
For the Western allies 11 November 1918 has always been a solemn date - the end of fighting which had destroyed a generation, and also a vindication of a terrible sacrifice with the total collapse of their principal enemies: the German Empire, Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire. But for much of the rest of Europe this was a day with no meaning, as a continuing, nightmarish series of conflicts engulfed country after country.
In this highly original, gripping book Robert Gerwarth asks us to think again about the true legacy of the First World War.
A refreshingly original history of the lost countries of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, examined and illustrated with the countries’ postage stamps.
These are the stories of fifty countries that once existed but have now have been erased from the map. Varying vastly in size and shape, location and longevity, they are united by one fact: all of them endured long enough to issue their own stamps.
Some of their names, such as Biafra or New Brunswick, will be relatively familiar. Others, such as Labuan, Tannu Tuva, and Inini, are far less recognizable. But all of these lost nations have stories to tell, whether they were as short- lived as Eastern Karelia, which lasted only a few weeks during the Soviet– Finnish War of 1922, or as long- lasting as the Orange Free State, a Boer Republic that celebrated fifty years as an independent state in the late 1800s. Their broad spectrum reflects the entire history of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, with its ideologies, imperialism, waves of immigration, and conflicts both major and minor.
The motifs and symbols chosen for stamps have always served as a form of national self- presentation, an expression of the aims and ambitions of the ruling authorities. Drawing on fiction and eye- witness accounts as well as historical sources, Bjorn Berge’s witty text casts an unconventional eye on these lesser- known nations. Nowherelands is a different kind of history book that will intrigue anyone keen to understand what makes a nation a nation.
The most incredible places to relive humankind’s deep past.
Humanity’s written history stretches back only 5,000 years, a mere blip on the timeline of our existence. If you want to know what it really means to be fully human, to see the whole story, you need to go back. Way, way back.
Prehistoric humans couldn’t write, but they were adept at telling their own stories. On every continent and outpost where they gained a foothold, they left signs for modern man to decipher.
From the Middle Bronze Age settlement of Arkaim on the Kazakh Steppes to the temples of the Olmec in Mexico; from one of the first European proto-cities at Nebelivka in Ukraine to the neolithic henges of Avebury and Stonehenge; from the dolmens of Antequera in the heart of Andalucía to the megalithic culture that thrived in isolation on Indonesia’s tiny Nias Island.
In the second half of the tenth century, Byzantium embarked on a series of spectacular conquests: first in the southeast against the Arabs, then in Bulgaria, and finally in the Georgian and Armenian lands. By the early eleventh century, the empire was the most powerful state in the Mediterranean. It was also expanding economically, demographically, and, in time, intellectually as well. Yet this imperial project came to a crashing collapse fifty years later, when political disunity, fiscal mismanagement, and defeat at the hands of the Seljuks in the east and the Normans in the west brought an end to Byzantine hegemony. By 1081, not only was its dominance of southern Italy, the Balkans, Caucasus, and northern Mesopotamia over but Byzantium's very existence was threatened.
How did this dramatic transformation happen? Based on a close examination of the relevant sources, this history - the first of its kind in over a century - offers a new reconstruction of the key events and crucial reigns as well as a different model for understanding imperial politics and wars, both civil and foreign. In addition to providing a badly needed narrative of this critical period of Byzantine history, Streams of Gold, Rivers of Blood offers new interpretations of key topics relevant to the medieval era.
The narrative unfolds in three parts: the first covers the years 955-1025, a period of imperial conquest and consolidation of authority under the great emperor Basil "the Bulgar-Slayer." The second (1025-1059) examines the dispersal of centralized authority in Constantinople as well as the emergence of new foreign enemies (Pechenegs, Seljuks, and Normans). The last section chronicles the spectacular collapse of the empire during the second half of the eleventh century, concluding with a look at the First Crusade and its consequences for Byzantine relations with the powers of Western Europe.
This briskly paced and thoroughly investigated narrative vividly brings to life one of the most exciting and transformative eras of medieval history.
The image of the visionary Celt has captured the modern imagination. Whether it be the woad-painted pagan warrior fighting for his freedom against distant rulers (be they Roman, English or French), or the fanatical druid harrying Roman legionaries through the treacherous and mist-drenched forests of north Wales, the Celtic idea represents a proud and fierce independence.
Yet there is another sort of Celtism: represented by the calligraphy and austere spirituality of the monks who illuminated the Book of Kells, or by that distinctive separateness characterizing the so-called 'Celtic fringe' of Britain (host to still-living Celtic languages). But as Alex Woolf shows, even these contemporary associations do the Celts less than justice. Northern and western Britain are merely the last redoubts of what was once a mighty and far-flung iron-age civilization, whose settlements extended from Anatolia and the lower Danube to Ireland and Spain. Alex Woolf looks at Celtic culture in its entirety, concentrating especially on the unifying Celtic language. He traces the Celts' development from their beginnings to their seventh-century nadir, when they ceased to be a single community.
Encompassing Celtic religion, Romano-Celtic conflict and cohabitation, late antiquity, Celtic Christianity, Celtic art and the contested notion of a 'Celtic heritage', the author offers a fresh and illuminating history of the Celts and their legacy.
Five hundred years before Christ in a little town on the far western border of the settled and civilizaed world, a strange new power was at work... Athens had entered upon her brief and magnificent flowering of genius which so molded the world of mind and of spirit that our mind and spirit today are different... What was then produced of art and of thought has never been surpasses and very rarely equalled, and the stamp of it is upon all the art and all the thought of the Western world. A perennial favorite in many different editions, Edith Hamilton's best-selling The Greek Way captures the spirit and achievements of Greece in the fifth century B.C. A retired headmistress when she began her writing career in the 1930s, Hamilton immediately demonstrated a remarkable ability to bring the world of ancient Greece to life, introducing that world to the twentieth century. The New York Times called The Greek Way a book of both cultural and critical importance.
As a child he was given his own suit of armour; in 1346, at the age of 16, he helped defeat the French at Crecy; and in 1356 he captured the King of France at Poitiers. For the chronicler Jean Froissart, 'He was the flower of all chivalry'; for the Chandos Herald, who fought with him, he was 'the embodiment of all valour'. Edward of Woodstock, eldest son and heir of Edward III of England, better known as 'the Black Prince', was England's pre-eminent military leader during the first phase of the Hundred Years War. Michael Jones uses contemporary chronicles and documentary material, including the Prince's own letters and those of his closest followers, to tell the tale of an authentic English hero and to paint a memorable portrait of warfare and society in the tumultuous fourteenth century.
In the two centuries before the Norman invasion of England, Anglo-Saxon and Viking forces clashed repeatedly in bloody battles across the country. Repeated Viking victories in the 9th century led to their settlement in the north of the country, but the tide of war ebbed and flowed until the final Anglo-Saxon victory before the Norman Conquest. Using stunning artwork, this book examines in detail three battles between the two deadly foes: Ashdown in 871 which involved the future Alfred the Great; Maldon in 991 where an Anglo-Saxon army sought to counter a renewed Viking threat; and Stamford Bridge in 1066, in which King Harold Godwinesson abandoned his preparations to repel the expected Norman invasion in order to fight off Harald Hard-Counsel of Norway. Drawing upon historical accounts from both English and Scandinavian sources and from archaeological evidence, Gareth Williams presents a detailed comparison of the weaponry, tactics, strategies and underlying military organization of the Anglo-Saxons and Vikings, and considers the developments which took place on both sides in the two centuries of Viking incursions into Anglo-Saxon England.
Ancient Rome was uniquely bellicose. Her legionaries are often cited as the original professional soldiers and famed for their iron discipline, but they were also formidable individual warriors, sometimes berserks, who gloried in single combat, taking heads and despoiling their enemies. They were men who believed they were sired by a god of war, driven by the need to create and sustain heroic reputations, and who disrobed in public to display battle scars. Yet these same warriors read philosophy, wrote history and recited poetry. For the Glory of Rome introduces the heroic, yet utterly ruthless men who carved out the Roman Empire. The author examines the deeds of men like Siccius Dentatus, the victor of eight single combats and a hero of the common people; Decius Mus, the consul who charged into the midst of the enemy at Sentinum to devote himself to the gods of the Underworld; and the feuding centurions Pullo and Vorenus, rivals for every post and honour but bound together by their loyalty to Caesar. Ross Cowan explores the mindset of the Roman fighting men, examining their motivation, beliefs and superstitions, illuminating why they fought and died for the glory of Rome.
In the late 4th century, pressure from the Huns forced the Goths to cross the Danube into the Roman Empire. The resultant Battle of Adrianople in 378 was one of Rome's greatest defeats.
Both western (Visigoth) and eastern (Ostrogoth) branches of the Goths had a complex relationship with the Romans, sometimes fighting as their allies against other barbarian interlopers but carving out their own kingdoms in the process. Under Alaric the Visigoths sacked Rome itself in 410 and went on to establish a kingdom in Gaul (France). They helped the Romans defeat the Hunnic invasion of Gaul at Chalons in 451 but continued to expand at Roman expense.
Defeated by the Franks they then took Spain from the Vandals. The Ostrogoths had a similar relationship with the Eastern Roman Empire before eventually conquering Italy. Adrianople, the events of 410 and the Ostrogoths long war with Belisarius, including the Siege of Rome, are among the campaigns and battles Simon MacDowall narrates in detail. He analyses the arms and contrasting fighting styles of the Ostro - and Visi - Goths and evaluates their effectiveness against the Romans.
A sweeping new history of how climate change and disease helped bring down the Roman Empire.
Here is the monumental retelling of one of the most consequential chapters of human history: the fall of the Roman Empire. The Fate of Rome is the first book to examine the catastrophic role that climate change and infectious diseases played in the collapse of Rome's power-a story of nature's triumph over human ambition.
Interweaving a grand historical narrative with cutting-edge climate science and genetic discoveries, Kyle Harper traces how the fate of Rome was decided not just by emperors, soldiers, and barbarians but also by volcanic eruptions, solar cycles, climate instability, and devastating viruses and bacteria. He takes readers from Rome's pinnacle in the second century, when the empire seemed an invincible superpower, to its unraveling by the seventh century, when Rome was politically fragmented and materially depleted. Harper describes how the Romans were resilient in the face of enormous environmental stress, until the besieged empire could no longer withstand the combined challenges of a little ice age and recurrent outbreaks of bubonic plague.
A poignant reflection on humanity's intimate relationship with the environment, The Fate of Rome provides a sweeping account of how one of history's greatest civilizations encountered and endured, yet ultimately succumbed to the cumulative burden of nature's violence. The example of Rome is a timely reminder that climate change and germ evolution have shaped the world we inhabit-in ways that are surprising and profound.
In this informal history of Roman civilization, Edith Hamilton vividly depicts the Roman life and spirit as they are revealed in the greatest writers of the time. Among these literary guides are Cicero, who left an incomparable collection of letters; Catullus, the quintessential poet of love; Horace, the chronicler of a cruel and materialistic Rome; and the Romantics Virgil, Livy and Seneca. The story concludes with the stark contrast between high-minded Stoicism and the collapse of values witnessed by Tacitus and Juvenal.
Exiles, lost souls, remnants of a dying race. The fate of the First Nations peoples of Van Diemen's Land is one of the most infamous chapters in Australian, and world, history. The men, women, and children exiled to Flinders Island in the 1830s and 40s have often been written about, but never allowed to speak for themselves. This book aims to change that. Penned by the exiles during their fifteen years at the settlement called Wybalenna, items in the Flinders Island Chronicle, sermons, letters, and petitions offer a compelling corrective to traditional portrayals of a hopeless, dispossessed, illiterate people's final days. The exiles did not see themselves as prisoners, but as a Free People. Seen through their own writing, the community at Wybalenna was vibrant, complex, and evolving. Rather than a depressed people simply waiting for death, their own words reveal a politically astute community engaged in a fifteen year campaign for their own freedom: one which was ultimately successful. This is a compelling story that will profoundly affect understandings of Tasmanian and Australian history.
Seeing Saltwater Country is an art collaboration between photographer Sally Mayman, painter Dale Kentwell and the people of the Dampier Peninsula in Australia's north-west. Sally and Dale are based in Sydney and were invited to the Dampier Peninsula by Bardi Nyul Nyul man Albert Wiggan.There they met many locals of the region's remote Aboriginal communities, and collaborated with them on a series of portraits in landscapes that depict remote community life and celebrate the beauty of a place unlike any other. Sally's sepia photographs sit alongside Dale's colourful paintings, both created with direction from each collaborator and with their accompanying handwritten message. At the heart of these portraits is a strong and enduring connection to country.
The state of South Australia was a British imperial construct, its borders determined by three straight lines, with no reference to the Aboriginal presence.
The colonial process in South Australia began decades before formal annexation with unregulated interactions between coastal Aboriginal people and European sealers and whalers. Despite catastrophic interventions in the lives of Aboriginal people during and following colonisation, many communities retain strong identities and cultural and linguistic knowledge, rooted in a deep connection to the land.
Colonialism and its Aftermath traces the ongoing impact of colonialism on Aboriginal individuals, communities and cultures, the disruptions and displacements it has caused, and Aboriginal responses to these challenges.
Contributors: Diane Bell, Peggy Brock, Jennifer Caruso, Deane Fergie, Robert Foster, Mary-Anne Gale, Tom Gara, Des Hartman, Luise Hercus, Rani Kerin, Skye Krichauff, Christine Lockwood, Rod Lucas, Ingereth Macfarlane, Paul Monaghan, Amanda Nettelbeck, Chris Nobbs, Carol Pybus, Lester-Irabinna Rigney, Tikari Rigney and Phyllis Williams.
Taking the Great Rift Valley - the geological fault that will eventually tear Africa in two - as his central metaphor, Alex Perry explores the split between a resurgent Africa and a world at odds with its rise. Africa has long been misunderstood - and abused - by outsiders. Perry travelled the continent for most of a decade, meeting with entrepreneurs and warlords, professors and cocaine smugglers, presidents and jihadis, among many others.Opening with a devastating investigation into a largely unreported war crime in Somalia in 2011, he finds Africa at a moment of furious self-assertion. This is a remade continent, defiantly rising from centuries of oppression to become an economic and political titan: where cash is becoming a thing of the past, where astronomers are unlocking the origin of life and where, twenty-five years after Live Aid, Ethiopia's first yuppies are traders on an electronic food exchange. Yet, as Africa finally wins the substance of its freedom, it must confront the three last false prophets of Islamists, dictators and aid workers, who would keep it in its bonds.
Sub-Saharan Africa faces three big inter-related challenges over the next generation. It will double its population to two billion by 2045. By then more than half of Africans will be living in cities. And this group of mostly young people will be connected with each other and the world through mobile devices. Properly harnessed and planned for, this is a tremendously positive force for change. Without economic growth and jobs, it could prove a political and social catastrophe. Old systems of patronage and of muddling through will no longer work because of these population increases. Instead, if leaders want to continue in power, they will have to promote economic growth in a more dynamic manner. Making Africa Work is a first-hand account and handbook of how to ensure growth beyond commodities and create jobs in the continent.
Covering a period of five hundred years, from the arrival of the Ottomans to the aftermath of the Arab uprisings, James McDougall presents an expansive new account of the modern history of Africa's largest country. Drawing on substantial new scholarship and over a decade of research, McDougall places Algerian society at the centre of the story, tracing the continuities and the resilience of Algeria's people and their cultures through the dramatic changes and crises that have marked the country. Whether examining the emergence of the Ottoman viceroyalty in the early modern Mediterranean, the 130 years of French colonial rule and the revolutionary war of independence, the Third World nation-building of the 1960s and 1970s, or the terrible violence of the 1990s, this book will appeal to a wide variety of readers in African and Middle Eastern history and politics, as well as those concerned with the wider affairs of the Mediterranean.
In 2009, three US professors with access to Adolf Hitler’s alleged remains startled the world with scientific DNA proof that the skull and bones that Russia had claimed since the end of World War II were Hitler’s actually belonged to a middle-aged woman whose identity remains unknown.
This announcement has rekindled interest in the claim made by Joseph Stalin, maintained to the end of his life, that Hitler got away. The truth is that no one saw Hitler and Eva Braun die in the bunker in Berlin on April 30, 1945. No photographs were taken to document claims Hitler and Evan Braun committed suicide. Hitler’s body was never recovered. No definitive physical evidence exists proving Hitler died in the bunker in Berlin.
Dr. Jerome Corsi explores the historical possibility that Hitler escaped Nazi Germany at the end of World War II. FBI and CIA records maintained at the National Archives indicate that the US government took seriously reports at the end of World War II that Hitler had escaped to Argentina. More recent evidence suggests Hitler may have fled to Indonesia, where he married and worked at a hospital in Sumbawa. Even the chief of the US trial counsel at Nuremburg, Thomas J. Dodd, was quoted as saying, “No one for sure can say Adolf Hitler is dead.”
Putting massive amounts of evidence and research under a critical eye, Dr. Corsi shows that perhaps modern history’s most tantalizing question has yet to be definitively answered: Did Hitler escaped Nazi Germany at the end of World War II to plot revenge and to plan the rise of the Fourth Reich?
Journey deeper into Freemasonry with Esoteric Freemasonry, Jean-Louis de Biasi's follow-up book to Secrets and Practices of the Freemasons. This powerful book shows you how to enter into your inner temple and accomplish the ancient mysteries. Discover links back to Egyptian Masonry, valuable teachings and rituals that permit you to practice esoteric Freemasonry as an individual, and much more.
Explores evidence for the theory of directed panspermia - that life on Earth and the landscape of Earth itself was engineered by extraterrestrials
• Details how the Earth was terraformed through a sophisticated geo-engineering program, providing clear examples such as the precise mathematical longitude configurations of the Great Pyramid of Giza with the major rivers on Earth
• Shows how our spectrum of blood types supports the theory of panspermia while directly contradicting the conventional “out of Africa” theory of evolution
• Examines the strongest modern UFO accounts, including the Russian Roswell case, as well as the suppressed UFO sightings of NASA astronauts
In the early 1970s, Nobel Prize-winning DNA co-discoverer Sir Francis Crick and his colleague Leslie Orgel proposed that in the distant past, an extraterrestrial race sent a spacecraft loaded with microorganisms to seed the Earth with life. Now, more than 40 years later, the fields of space research and biotechnology have advanced to the point where they can back up Crick and Orgel’s claims about our ancient alien ancestors.
Sharing scientific evidence of alien involvement with life on our planet and with the very landscape of Earth itself, Will Hart refines the theory of directed panspermia - that life was intentionally seeded on Earth by extraterrestrials - to reveal that the same ET agency also created humans and generated civilization. He shows how the Earth was terraformed through an engineering program so sophisticated and vast that it has escaped our attention so far - for example, the major rivers on Earth are precisely aligned through geo-engineering with the Great Pyramid of Giza.
Revealing the Great Pyramid as an alien message in stone, the author explains how the Giza pyramids could not have been built by the ancient Egyptians and examines the extraterrestrial energy technologies used to move the pyramids’ massive stone blocks, methods later rediscovered by Nikola Tesla and the builder of Coral Castle, Edward Leedskalnin. He details how an advanced race implanted the basic genome on Earth as well as genetically engineered the human race and shows how our spectrum of blood types supports the theory of panspermia while directly contradicting the conventional “out of Africa” theory of evolution.
Investigating how the extraterrestrial agency behind the origin of civilization is still working behind the scenes today, the author examines the strongest modern UFO accounts, including the Russian Roswell case and the suppressed UFO sightings of NASA astronauts. He shows that this advanced ET civilization is not an alien race in the way we normally think of “aliens” - they are our ancestors and as human as we are.
Growing up in Hanoi, Haiphong, and Saigon, Mai Elliott loved listening to the stories told by her parents and other relatives about their parents and grandparents. She found these tales fascinating - some funny, some tragic. She knew one day she would tell their stories and she has in her book The Sacred Willow. In The Sacred Willow Mai tells the story of her family over four generations, from the 19th century to the present. She takes us back to the vanished world where her great-grandfather, Duong Lam, rose from poverty to become a mandarin at the imperial court. She tells of childhood hours spent in her grandmother's sil shop - and of hiding while French troops torched her village, watching blossoms from the trees torn by fire flutter like hundreds of butterflies overhead. She reveals the agonizing choices that split Vietnamese families, while her father, loyal to his mandarin heritage, served the French colonial regime, her eldest sister joined the Communist guerillas and vanished for years into the jungle. Finally, Mai traces her family's journey through some of the most harrowing events of recent times - the fall of Saigon, the exodus of the boat people, and the re-education camps endured by those who were left behind. Writing with insight and compassion, Mai Elliott weaves a narrative with the richness and colour of a historical novel. Haunting, heartbreaking and inspiring, The Sacred Willow wo;; fprever cjamge pir imderstamdomg pf Vietnam and our role in it.
From battling pirates to tracking down gun runners, drug smugglers and terrorists; the high energy exploits and explosive adventures of the Australian Navy in the Arabian Gulf. From Ian McPhedran, best-selling author of The Amazing SAS, Soldiers Without Borders and Too Bold to Die, comes the untold and largely unknown story of how the Royal Australian Navy battles pirates, gun runners and drug smugglers in the seas of the Arabian Gulf and the Horn of Africa along the infamous route known as the 'smack track'. For more than twenty years, Australian sailors have been risking their lives, conducting often fraught and dangerous operations in war and in the battle against terrorism. From braving rough seas to boarding rickety dhows or clambering up the sheer steel sides of modern day supertankers looking for contraband, The Smack Track tells a thrilling, eye-witness story of grit, courage, ingenuity and sacrifice.
Dancing with Strangers is Inga Clendinnen's seminal account of the moment in January 1788 when the First Fleet arrived in Sydney Harbour and a thousand British men and women, some of them convicts and some of them free, encountered the Australians living there. 'These people mixed with ours,' wrote a British observer after landfall, 'and all hands danced together.' What followed would shape relations between the peoples for the next two centuries.Winner, Kiriyama Prize 2004Winner, Douglas Stewart Prize for Non-fiction, NSW Premier's Literary Awards 2004 Winner, Best History Book, Queensland Premier's Literary Awards 2004
Joel Wakely has worked with and raced with Holden cars almost his entire life, owning several significant and some very rare models. He knows Holdens like he knows the back of his hand, and he knows many other passionate Holden lovers like himself. Following his success with his book Legends of the 48-215 - an in-depth racing history of very first Holden model - and to mark the manufacture in Australia of the very last Holdens in 2017, he has gathered together dozens of fascinating stories about many of the models Holden have produced since 1948. Joel tells the whole story of Holden, from the saddlery set up by J. A. Holden in the 1850s, to Henry Holden's car body-building of the 1910s, the sale of the company to General Motors, the determination to produce the all-Australian car, and the highlights of 69 years of manufacturing all-Australian vehicles. With contributions from dozens of Holden enthusiasts about their myriad cars plus hundreds of photographs, many never seen in print before, this is a Holden book like no other, a book from the heart that goes deep into the passion that Holden engenders.
Imagine yourself critically injured or seriously ill in the middle of nowhere. You’d be hoping like hell there was a doctor nearby to take charge; someone resourceful, who’d think quickly and stay calm under pressure; someone who could, if necessary, take charge from a distance. You’d want to be in the safe and sure hands of one of these amazing bush doctors.
They might work in some of the most spectacular locations in Australia – from the splendid isolation of the Kimberley and the wide open spaces of outback Queensland to the freezing icecaps of Antarctica – but their profession demands long hours, extensive medical knowledge and, sometimes, courage beyond their experience.
Meet some of the extraordinary medicos who save lives everyday beyond the great divide including Jenny Wilson, the locum with itchy feet who roams Australia and beyond to help people; Rolf Gomes, who built a ‘heart truck’ to take life-saving medical advice to the inland; and Molly Shorthouse who cares for people’s mental health. And, always, there’s the Royal Flying Doctors...
From the bestselling author of Nurses of the Outback, Bush Doctors is a powerful and captivating tribute to all rural and remote doctors – unsung Australian heroes who truly do care.
The Vanished Land is the Western District of Victoria stripped of its identity, its social elite of grazing dynasties departed for their own reasons.
The melancholic exodus has increased recently as the myriad pressures of holding inherited land have become intolerable in a nation never intimidated by ditching its past. This historic plain of fecundity demands an investigation of its ending as the home of a ruling class that for 150 years bestrode an Australia riding on the sheep's back.
The Vanished Land is a human tale of leaving, of a disconnect with the land, of submerged anguish and inhibited grief, a private story of loss told for the first time by an outsider with insider connection.
Soldier presents a magnificent collection of highly detailed illustrations depicting uniforms worn by the military forces of this nation from colonial times to the modern era. Accompanying each illustration is the history of the uniform and equipment portrayed and the men and women who wore the uniform and the circumstances of their service. This is a book rich in colour and historical narrative.
Soldier is much more than simply a description of military uniforms and equipment. Phil Rutherford has spent over 20 years searching for the roots of Australia's modern army, analysing trends both in dress and in the military art itself. In doing so he has discovered that there is very little about the uniforms worn and the equipment carried by today's soldiers that can truly be called its own. Even the most iconic symbol of the Australian army, the slouch hat, was not invented by a Victorian volunteer as popular rumour suggests, but was worn by troops in seventeenth-century Europe. In fact, there are significant elements of the army's dress and equipment, such as the badges of rank worn by both soldiers and officers, which can be traced to the days of knights in shining armour.
Soldier seeks to map the links between the army's modern dress and its earliest antecedents, describing the formation and history of Australia's army, from the perspective of both the regular and reserve soldiers. This book also reveals the story behind the soldiers themselves - the men and women who wore these uniforms - and the times in which they served since the first volunteers and militias were raised to protect the lives and property of the earliest settlers from adversaries both real and imagined.
'The true story of Horrie the Wog-Dog who was adopted by the Australian Signal Platoon of the M/G Battalion, in spite of all rules against keeping pets, and how Horrie not only won his stripes as a valuable addition to the group but had the further distinction of being smuggled into Australia on their return. The Wog-Dog was sneaked into Greece, went through the evacuation, carried messages as well as proving a dependable warning against air attacks. He went to Syria and Palestine, never learning to tolerate Arabs - he suffered cold and sickness, he fell in love with Ishmi, he was bombed off his ship and he never once was found during all necessary cover-up travelling. A story for all dog lovers, in spite of heavy Australian slang and style, of a dinkum Aussie who was kept, protected and loved by dinkum Aussies.
In this ground-breaking work, James Roberts examines the willingness and ability of British volunteer and conscript infantrymen of the Great War to perform the soldier's fundamental role: to kill or maim the enemy, and accept the attendant chance of being killed or wounded.
The literature to date has been, paradoxically, somewhat silent on the soldier's part in the act of killing. This study recovers this neglected narrative through the experiences of 19th (Western) Division, as recorded in their unit war diaries - a source generated primarily to record the experiences of combat. The study's findings offer testimony to the courage and endurance of the Great War soldier in circumstances of terrible hardship and suffering.
But they also reveal much lesser known and understood aspects of the soldier's behaviour in combat. Many infantrymen were unable and/or unwilling to traverse the experiential divide between civilian life and the ultimate act of soldiery. This in itself indicates the immense psychological steps taken by those (perhaps the minority) who found themselves capable of killing.
Those who did fight gravitated towards weapons (such as the machine-gun or Mills Bomb) that, primarily through visual distance, partially sanitised the act of maiming the enemy. The bayonet kill, a far more personal form of combat, was a rare act; despite the British Army's undiminished championing of the bayonet as the principal weapon of the infantryman. But neither were the pacifistic legions always pawns in the hands of their senior commanders.
Upon the physical No Man's Land they discovered a behavioural grey area between complete obedience and absolute defiance, and were able to tacitly limit their commitment to combat through subtle passive behaviour such as 'straggling' or going to ground. In doing so they successfully wrestled back a degree of control over their battlefield fate.
From a number of conclusions drawn by the study one predominates: civilian mores and values were not always surrendered the moment the infantryman crossed the parapet; many soldiers during the Great War found themselves willing servicemen, but reluctant killers.
An intimate portrait of two pivotal Restoration figures during one of the most dramatic periods of English history Samuel Pepys and John Evelyn are two of the most celebrated English diarists. They were also extraordinary men and close friends. This first full portrait of that friendship transforms our understanding of their times. Pepys was earthy and shrewd, while Evelyn was a genteel aesthete, but both were drawn to intellectual pursuits. Brought together by their work to alleviate the plight of sailors caught up in the Dutch wars, they shared an inexhaustible curiosity for life and for the exotic. Willes explores their mutual interests-diary-keeping, science, travel, and a love of books-and their divergent enthusiasms, Pepys for theater and music, Evelyn for horticulture and garden design. Through the richly documented lives of two remarkable men, Willes revisits the history of London and of England in an age of regicide, revolution, fire, and plague to reveal it also as a time of enthralling possibility.
Martin Parr, one of Britain's best-known contemporary photographers, and President of Magnum, the world-famous photographic agency has undertaken a photo-documentary book project. Oxford is a collection of around 100 photographs documenting an academic year in the life of the university. They captures the day-to-day life of the colleges and University at work and play, and the colourful and arcane rituals that make it so distinctive. His photographs are accompanied by an extended essay that draws on, and enriches, the photographic material and penned by Simon Winchester, OBE, the British writer, journalist and broadcaster. The very first photo-documentary of Oxford was created by William Henry Fox Talbot. A century and a half later, Martin Parr's new project pays tribute to the great the pioneer of photography, and coincides with the Bodleian Library's bid to secure his personal archive.
In 1834 six farm labourers from the Dorset hamlet of Tolpuddle fell foul of draconian Victorian laws prohibiting assembly . Today the names of George Loveless and his brother James, Thomas Standfield and his son John, James Brine and James Hammett, who made up the Tolpuddle Martyrs, stand high on the roll of British men who have been victimised for their beliefs but stood steadfast in the face of persecution. They refused to be persuaded to betray their principles either by the promise of release or by transportation to Australia. The Tolpuddle men fought to win their freedom sustained by their passionate conviction that their sacrifices would not be in vain. Their experience and example have proved to be an inspiration for future generations and they remain icons of pioneering trade unionism. The Author has thoroughly researched their story and the result is a fascinating and revealing re-examination of this legendary saga. Their triumph over legal persecution and abuses of power over 180 years ago is told afresh in this comprehensive and attractively illustrated book which delves deeper into their story than ever before.
Under the Sumptuary Laws of 1363, merchants were forbidden to wear pointy shoes in excess of 61/2in in length. One of Henry VII's most prized possessions was the preserved leg of St George, a gift from Louis XII of France. In February 1789, George III pursued a best-selling lady novelist in a high-speed chase through Kew Gardens. This book contains hundreds of `strange but true' facts and anecdotes about English history. Arranged into a miniature history of England, and with bizarre and hilarious true tales for every era, it will interest and delight readers everywhere.
In this fascinating book, the reader is taken on a journey of real life accounts of Victorian children, how they lived, worked, played and ultimately died. Many of these stories have remained hidden for over 100 years. They are now unearthed to reveal the hardship and cruel conditions experienced by many youngsters, such as a travelling fair child, an apprentice at sea and a trapper.
The lives of the children of prostitutes, servant girls, debutantes and married women all intermingle, unified by one common factor: death. Drawing on actual instances of Infanticide and baby farming the reader is taken into a world of unmarried mothers, whose shame at being pregnant drove them to carry out horrendous crimes yet walk free from court, without consequence. For others, they were not so lucky. The Victorian children in this publication lived in the rapidly changing world of the Industrial Revolution. With the introduction of the New Poor Law in 1834 the future for some pauper children changed but not for the better. Studies have also unearthed a religious sect known as the Peculiar People and gives an insight into their beliefs.
This book is not recommended for those easily offended as it does contain graphic descriptions of some child murders, although not intended to glorify the tragedies, they were necessary to inform the reader of the horrific extent that some killers went to. This book will appeal to anyone with an interest in the social history of the Victorian period.
How are soldiers made? Why do they fight? Re-imagining the study of armed forces and society, Barkawi examines the imperial and multinational armies that fought in Asia in the Second World War, especially the British Indian army in the Burma campaign. Going beyond conventional narratives, Barkawi studies soldiers in transnational context, from recruitment and training to combat and memory. Drawing on history, sociology and anthropology, the book critiques the 'Western way of war' from a postcolonial perspective. Barkawi reconceives soldiers as cosmopolitan, their battles irreducible to the national histories that monopolise them. This book will appeal to those interested in the Second World War, armed forces and the British Empire, and students and scholars of military sociology and history, South Asian studies and international relations.
One of the two most powerful states in the world, China continues to be seen as a mystery even after decades of an open door. How does China work, what does it want, why does it want it, and what does its rise to global power mean for the rest of the world? As the twenty-first century looks set to be the stage for a battle about competing geopolitical ideals, these are urgent questions for everyone with an interest in what the future might bring. Epic in scope, this is the story of how China became the state it is today and how its worldview is based on what has gone before. Weaving together inspirations, ideas, wars and dreams to reveal the heart of what it means to be Chinese and how the past impacts on the present. Despite decades of a relatively open door relationship with the rest of the world, China is still a mystery to many outside it. A world of its own, China isboth a microcosm and an amplification of questions and events in the wider world. China's story offers us an opportunity to hold a mirror to ourselves: to our own assumptions, to our values, and to our ideas about the most important question of all: what it means to be human in the world of the state.
China has emerged as a member of the elite club of nations who are powerful at both global poles. Polar states are global giants, strong in military, scientific, and economic terms. The concept of a polar great power is relatively unknown in international relations studies; yet China, a rising power globally, is now widely using this term to categorize its aspirations and emphasize the significance of the polar regions to their national interests. China's focus on becoming a polar great power represents a fundamental re-orientation - a completely new way of imagining the world. China's push into these regions encompasses maritime and nuclear security, the frontlines of climate change research, and the possibility of a resources bonanza. As shown in this book, China's growing strength at the poles will be a game-changer for a number of strategic vulnerabilities that could shift the global balance of power in significant and unexpected ways.
When we think of France, we tend think of fine food and wine, the elegant boulevards of Paris or the chic beaches of St Tropez. Yet, as the largest country in Europe, France is home to extraordinary diversity. The idea of 'Frenchness' emerged through 2,000 years of history and it is this riveting story, from the Roman conquest of Gaul to the present day, that Cecil Jenkins tells: of the forging of this great nation through its significant people and events and and its fascinating culture. As he unfolds this narrative, Jenkins shows why the French began to see themselves as so different from the rest of Europe, but also why, today, the French face the same problems with regard to identity as so many other European nations.
Louis XIV ruled France for more than half a century and is typically remembered for his absolutism, his patronage of the arts and his lavish lifestyle - culminating in the building of Versailles. This original and lively biography focuses on Louis's personal life while keeping the needs of the history student at the forefront, featuring analysis of Louis's wider significance in history and the surrounding historiography. This book balances the undeniable cultural achievements of the reign against the realities of Louis's egotism and argues that, when viewed critically, Louis's rule (1643-1715) personified the disadvantages of absolute monarchy, and inexorably led to social and political blunders, resulting in the suffering of millions. Richard Wilkinson demonstrates that while Louis excelled as a self-publicist, he fell far short of being a great monarch. This second edition includes an up-to-date and accessible biography, further sections on the women at Louis's court, France in an international context and new material looking at Louis's involvement in ballet. This book is essential reading for all history students and those with a general interest in one of history's most colourful rulers.
In 1933, Adolf Hitler became Chancellor of Germany. A year later, all parties but the Nazis had been outlawed, freedom of the press was but a memory, and Hitler's dominance seemed complete. Yet over the next few years, an unlikely clutch of conspirators emerged - soldiers, schoolteachers, politicians, diplomats, theologians, even a carpenter - who would try repeatedly to end the Fuhrer's genocidal reign. Danny Orbach's meticulously researched book tells the story of their noble, ingenious, and doomed efforts. This is history at its most suspenseful: we witness secret midnight meetings, crises of conscience, fierce debates among old friends about whether and how to dismantle Nazism, and the various plots themselves being devised and executed.
The book Danish Volunteers of the Waffen-SS tells the story of Freikorps Danmark in pictures from 1941-1943. Freikorps Danmark was established as a Danish corps which had to fight communism and, from its beginning, it was controlled from Denmark and put under the control of the SS-Division Totenkopf and 1. SS-Brigade during its efforts on the Eastern Front. It was a relatively small corps, which almost entirely consisted of Danish volunteers; during their two efforts on the Eastern Front, they suffered heavy casualties. In 1943, the High Command of Waffen-SS decided to abolish Freikorps Danmark and the personnel had to enter a new German division, which was directly controlled by Waffen-SS. The source of material for this book has been gathered from the photo collections of the old volunteers, which means that many of the photos have never been seen before.
Hitler's Third Reich is still the focus of numerous articles, books and films: no conflict of the twentieth century has prompted such interest or such a body of literature. Approaching the canon of World War II literature is a challenge for a general reader but the 100 objects approach is a novel and accessible presentation. This is a compelling, frequently shocking and revelatory guide to the Third Reich that has been collated and presented by two of the world's leading World War II historians. The photographs gathered by Roger Moorhouse and Roger Moorhouse include Pervitin, Hitler's Mercedes, Wehrmach toilet paper, Hitler's grooming kit, the Nuremberg courtroom, the Tiger Tank, fragments of flak, the Iron Cross and, of course, the Swastika and Mein Kampf.
The third edition of What is Military History? has been thoroughly updated, and includes a new bibliography and new case studies on naval warfare and the origins of war, as well as expanded sections on historiography, environmental history and world history. This popular textbook showcases a field that encompasses not only accounts of campaigns and battles, but includes a wide range of perspectives on all aspects of past military organization and activity. Its global and comparative analysis covers: the history of military history, showing how it has developed from ancient times to the present; the key ideas and concepts that shape analysis of military activity; the current controversies about which military historians argue, and why they are important; a survey of who does military history, where it is taught and published, and how it is practiced; and a look at where military history is headed in the future. Ideal for any interested reader and for classes in military history and in historiography generally, the third edition of this popular book thoroughly explains the dynamics of this rich and growing area of study.
`The core of the book is a virtuoso takedown of cherished shibboleths of Raj mythology' Financial Times `A forceful reminder that Britain has its own messy past to come to terms with' Guardian In the nineteenth century, imperial India was at the centre of Britain's global power. But since its partition between India and Pakistan in 1947, the Raj has divided opinion: some celebrate its supposed role in creating much that is good in the modern world; others condemn it as the cause of continuing poverty. Today, the Raj lives on in faded images of Britain's former glory, a notion used now to sell goods in India as well as Europe. But its real character has been poorly understood.India Conquered is the first general history of British India for over twenty years, getting under the skin of empire to show how British rule really worked. Oscillating between paranoid paralysis and moments of extreme violence, it was beset by chaos and chronic weakness. Jon Wilson argues that this contradictory character was a consequence of the Raj's failure to create long-term relationships with Indian society and claims that these systemic problems still affect the world's largest democracy as it navigates the twenty-first century.`This is a brave and long overdue riposte to Raj romanticists' John Keay
Mihir Bose was born in January 1947. Eight months later - and seventy years ago in August- India became a modern, free nation. The country he knew growing up in the 1960s has undergone vast and radical change. India today exports food, sends space probes to Mars, and all too often Indian businesses rescue their ailing competitors in the west. In From Midnight to Glorious Morning Bose travels the length and breadth of India to explore how a country that many doubted would survive at birth has been transformed into one capable of rivalling China as the preeminent economic superpower. Multifarious challenges still continue to plague India and Bose's penetrating analysis of the last 70 years asks what is yet to be done for the country to fulfil its destiny. The growth has been exponential and there is much to celebrate, the predictions of doom in August 1947 have proved to be unfounded, but Bose's nuanced, personal and trenchant book shows that it is naive to pretend the hoped-for bright morning has yet dawned.
The Easter Rising of 1916 not only destroyed much of the centre of Dublin -- it changed the course of Irish history. But why did it happen? What was the role of ordinary people in this extraordinary event? What motivated them and what were their aims? These basic questions continue to divide historians of modern Ireland.
The Rising is the story of Easter 1916 from the perspective of those who made it, focusing on the experiences of rank and file revolutionaries. Fearghal McGarry makes use of a unique source that has only recently seen the light of day -- a collection of over 1,700 eye-witness statements detailing the political activities of members of Sinn Fein and militant groups such as the Irish Republican Brotherhood. This collection represents one of the richest and most comprehensive oral history archives devoted to any modern revolution, providing new insights on almost every aspect of this seminal period.
The Rising shows how people from ordinary backgrounds became politicized and involved in the struggle for Irish independence. McGarry illuminates their motives, concerns, and aspirations, highlighting the importance of the Great War as a catalyst for the uprising. He concludes by exploring the Rising's revolutionary aftermath, which in time saw the creation of the independent state we see today.
This edition includes a new preface which reflects on the continuing importance of the Easter Rising as a symbol of Irish nationhood, and which looks at the 2016 centenary commemorations in both Ireland and the UK within the wider context of the 'Decade of Centenaries.'
This richly illustrated history explores every aspect of life in Edinburgh. This book covers the history of the city of Edinburgh from the first Mesolithic explorers who camped on the shores of the Forth some 10,000 years ago to the controversies of modern times. Taking a wider perspective it explores the ever-changing world resulting from industrialisation, which brought immigrants, wealth and poverty. Following that, new methods of transport opened up Edinburgh to the wider world. Now, with its historic architecture the city can become a battleground between developers and motorists who want more space in the central areas and conservationists who wish to protect the city's landscape.
Sir John Pryce of Newtown Hall died in 1761. He kept the embalmed bodies of his first two wives on either side of his bed - until his third wife insisted that they were removed. In 1856 Ronald Rhys from the Vale of Neath disappeared for a week after seeing a strange light in a field and hearing a loud noise. He remembered being examined by small creatures who took a sample of his blood. Oh yes, and America is named after a Welshman and the Holy Grail is kept in a bank vault in West Wales... This book contains hundreds of `strange but true' facts and anecdotes about Welsh history. Arranged into a miniature history of Wales, and with bizarre and hilarious true tales for every era, it will interest and delight readers everywhere.
In the 1840s, post-Napoleonic Italy was 'a geographical expression' - not a country, but a patchwork of states, divided between the Austrian-occupied north, and a Spanish-descended Bourbon monarchy, who ruled the south from Naples. Two decades later, it was a nation united under a single king and government, thanks largely to the efforts of the Kings of Sardinia and Piedmont, and the revolutionary Giuseppe Garibaldi. This book, the first of a two-part series on the armies that fought in the Italian Wars of Unification, examines the Piedmontese and Neapolitan armies that fought in the north and south of the peninsula. Illustrated with prints, early photos and detailed commissioned artwork, this book explores the history, organization, and appearance of the armies that fought to unite the Italian peninsula under one flag.
On 11 March 2011, a massive earthquake sent a 120-foot-high tsunami smashing into the coast of north-east Japan. By the time the sea retreated, more than 18,000 people had been crushed, burned to death, or drowned.
It was Japan's greatest single loss of life since the atomic bombing of Nagasaki. It set off a national crisis, and the meltdown of a nuclear power plant. And even after the immediate emergency had abated, the trauma of the disaster continued to express itself in bizarre and mysterious ways.
Richard Lloyd Parry, an award-winning foreign correspondent, lived through the earthquake in Tokyo, and spent six years reporting from the disaster zone. There he encountered stories of ghosts and hauntings. He met a priest who performed exorcisms on people possessed by the spirits of the dead. And he found himself drawn back again and again to a village which had suffered the greatest loss of all, a community tormented by unbearable mysteries of its own.
What really happened to the local children as they waited in the school playground in the moments before the tsunami? Why did their teachers not evacuate them to safety? And why was the unbearable truth being so stubbornly covered up?
Ghosts of the Tsunami is a classic of literary non-fiction, a heart-breaking and intimate account of an epic tragedy, told through the personal accounts of those who lived through it. It tells the story of how a nation faced a catastrophe, and the bleak struggle to find consolation in the ruins.
On August 9th, 1945, the US dropped an atomic bomb on Nagasaki.It killed a third of the population instantly, and the survivors, or hibakusha, would be affected by the life-altering medical conditions caused by the radiation for the rest of their lives. They were also marked with the stigma of their exposure to radiation, and fears of the consequences for their children.Nagasaki follows the previously unknown stories of five survivors and their families, from 1945 to the present day. It captures the full range of pain, fear, bravery, and compassion unleashed by the destruction of a city.Susan Southard has interviewed the hibakusha over many years and her intimate portraits of their lives show the consequences of nuclear war. Nagasaki tells the neglected story of life after nuclear war and will help shape public debate over one of the most controversial wartime acts in history.Published for the 70th anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs, this is the first study to be based on eye-witness accounts of Nagasaki in the style of John Hersey's Hiroshima.
Benjamin Netanyahu is currently serving his fourth term in office as Prime Minister of Israel, the longest serving Prime Minister in the country's history. Now Israeli journalist Ben Caspit puts Netanyahu's life under a magnifying glass, focusing on his last two terms in office. Caspit covers a wide swath of topics, including Netanyahu's policies, his political struggles, and his fight against the Iranian nuclear program, and zeroes in on Netanyahu's love/hate relationship with the American administration, America's Jews, and his alliances with American business magnates. A timely and important book, The Netanyahu Years is a primer for anyone looking to understand this world leader.
A groundbreaking reassessment of the crucial but unrecognized roles Germany's Jews played at home and at the front during World War I This book is the first to offer a full account of the varied contributions of German Jews to Imperial Germany's endeavors during the Great War. Historian Tim Grady examines the efforts of the 100,000 Jewish soldiers who served in the German military (12,000 of whom died), as well as the various activities Jewish communities supported at home, such as raising funds for the war effort and securing vital food supplies. However, Grady's research goes much deeper: he shows that German Jews were never at the periphery of Germany's warfare, but were in fact heavily involved. The author finds that many German Jews were committed to the same brutal and destructive war that other Germans endorsed, and he discusses how the conflict was in many ways lived by both groups alike. What none could have foreseen was the dangerous legacy they created together, a legacy that enabled Hitler's rise to power and planted the seeds of the Holocaust to come.
Tony Blair's decision to back George W. Bush in his attack on Iraq will go down as a defining moment for Britain. First as Ambassador to the UN, and then as Special Envoy for Iraq, the UK's highest authority on the ground, Sir Jeremy Greenstock was centre stage in the tumultuous days leading up to the Iraq war and witnessed first-hand its tremendous impact. This extraordinary book is a record of what he saw.Greenstock writes openly about US-UK relations, taking his readers behind closed doors and revealing the actions of key players in New York, Washington, London, Paris and the Middle East. To what extent was the Bush administration determined to attack Iraq come what may? What promise did Blair extract in exchange for backing Bush? Was the war legal? What effect is it continuing to have on Britain's long-term relations with America and Europe?Held back from publication when originally written in 2005, and now revised with a new foreword and epilogue following the publication of the Chilcot Report, Iraq- The Cost of War is a groundbreaking blow-by-blow account of one of the most pivotal and controversial conflicts in recent world history.
The eruption of the anti-Assad revolution in Syria has had many unintended consequences, among which is the opportunity it offered Sunni jihadists to establish a foothold in the heart of the Middle East. That Syria's ongoing civil war is so brutal and protracted has only compounded the situation, as have developments in Iraq and Lebanon. Ranging across the battlefields and international borders have been dozens of jihadi Islamist fighting groups, of which some coalesced into significant factions such as Jabhat al Nusra and the Islamic State. This book assesses and explains the emergence since 2011 of Sunni jihadist organisations in Syria's fledgling insurgency, charts their evolution and situates them within the global Islamist project. Unprecedented numbers of foreign fighters have joined such groups, who will almost certainly continue to host them. Thus, external factors in their emergence are scrutinised, including the strategic and tactical lessons learned from other jihadist conflict zones and the complex interplay between Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State and how it has influenced the jihadist sphere in Syria.Tensions between and conflict within such groups also feature in this indispensable volume.
During the course of the seventeenth century nearly 400,000 people left Britain for the Americas, most of them from England. Crossing the Atlantic was a major undertaking, the voyage long and treacherous. There was little hope of returning to see the friends and family who stayed behind. Why did so many go? A significant number went for religious reasons, either on the MAYFLOWER or as part of the mass migration to New England; some sought their fortunes in gold, fish or fur; some went to farm tobacco in Virginia, a booming trade which would enmesh Europe in a new addiction. Some went because they were loyal to the deposed Stuart king, while others yearned for an entirely new ambition - the freedom to think as they chose. Then there were the desperate: starving and impoverished people who went because things had not worked out in the Old World and there was little to lose from trying again in the New. EMIGRANTS casts light on this unprecedented population shift - a phenomenon that underpins the rise of modern America. Using contemporary sources including diaries, court hearings and letters, James Evans brings to light the extraordinary personal stories of the men and women who made the journey of a lifetime.
This is a groundbreaking series of books in English by author, re-enactor, and equestrian Paul L. Dawson that use thousands of pages of French archival documents, translations of more than 200 French eyewitness accounts, and dozens of new paintings by Keith Rocco to tell the story of Napoleon's final military operations and his defeat at the battle of Waterloo. Napoleon's Last Army (NLA) is the most comprehensive study ever made of the French army in 1815, using primary source information that provides new insights into this famous campaign. NLA will expose persistent myths and errors about the French forces at Waterloo and in the campaign of 1815.
The story of the epic contest between shipping magnates Samuel Cunard and Edward Collins for mid-19th century control of the Atlantic.
Between 1815 and the American Civil War, the greatest invention of the Industrial Revolution delivered a sea change in oceanic transportation. Steam travel transformed the Atlantic into a pulsating highway, dominated by ports in Liverpool and New York, as steamships ferried people, supplies, money, and information with astounding speed and regularity. American raw materials flowed eastward, while goods, capital, people, and technology crossed westward. The Anglo-American “partnership” fueled development worldwide; it also gave rise to a particularly intense competition.
Steam Titans tells the story of a transatlantic fight to wrest control of the globe's most lucrative trade route. Two men--Samuel Cunard and Edward Knight Collins--and two nations wielded the tools of technology, finance, and politics to compete for control of a commercial lifeline that spanned the North Atlantic. The world watched carefully to see which would win. Each competitor sent to sea the fastest, biggest, and most elegant ships in the world, hoping to earn the distinction of being known as “the only way to cross.”
Historian William M. Fowler brings to life the spectacle of this generation-long struggle for supremacy, during which New York rose to take her place among the greatest ports and cities of the world, and recounts the tale of a competition that was the opening act in the drama of economic globalization, still unfolding today.
Napoleon began his military career as an artillery cadet and artillery played a fundamental part in all his great battles. Until the Napoleonic Wars artillery had been seen merely as a supporting arm to the infantry, but Napoleon changed everything. He massed his guns in huge batteries to blast holes in his opponent’s line. He even used the artillery to charge the enemy, the gunners galloping up to the enemy to open fire at pointblank range.
Napoleon’s opponents did not all follow suit, choosing other tactical deployments. As a result, the Napoleonic era, more than any that preceded or followed it, was one of fascinating artillery maneuvers and critical actions that changed the course of many of the key battles. As the Prussian Field Marshal Blucher once observed, “Against Napoleon you needed guns – and lots of them!”
The Napoleonic Wars was also a time of innovation, with the introduction of shrapnel shells and military rockets. This book will examine the artillery arms of all sides from ‘muzzle to butt plate’. As well as the significant artillerymen of the period, the innovators, scientists, and innovators, military and civilian – individuals such as Robins, Belidor, Gribeauval and his colleagues, Maritz, Liechtenstein and his collaborators, as well as the du Teil brothers – will all be examined, as will the important battles and sieges, significant memoirs and documents, and artillery terms that soon became part of the military lexicon.
Written by the renowned historian Kevin F. Kiley, this will be the definitive book on the subject and will cover all aspects of artillery in the Napoleonic Wars.
President Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885) was one of the most esteemed individuals of the nineteenth century. His two-volume memoirs, sold door-to-door by former Union soldiers, have never gone out of print and were once as ubiquitous in American households as the Bible. Mark Twain, Gertrude Stein, Matthew Arnold, Henry James, and Edmund Wilson hailed these works as great literature, and Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush both credit Grant with influencing their own writing. Yet a judiciously annotated clarifying edition of these memoirs has never been produced until now.
The Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant is the first comprehensively annotated edition of Grant's memoirs, fully representing the great military leader's thoughts on his life and times through the end of the Civil War and his invaluable perspective on battlefield decision making. An introduction contextualizes Grant's life and significance, and lucid editorial commentary allows the president's voice and narrative to shine through. With annotations compiled by the editors of the Ulysses S. Grant Association's Presidential Library, this definitive edition enriches our understanding of the antebellum era, the Mexican War, and the Civil War. Grant provides insight into how rigorously these events tested America's democratic institutions and the cohesion of its social order.
The Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant preserves and extends a work of profound political, historical, and literary significance and serves as the gateway for modern readers of all backgrounds to an American classic.
A sweeping, in-depth history of NSA, whose famous “cult of silence” has left the agency shrouded in mystery for decades
The National Security Agency was born out of the legendary codebreaking programs of World War II that cracked the famed Enigma machine and other German and Japanese codes, thereby turning the tide of Allied victory. In the postwar years, as the United States developed a new enemy in the Soviet Union, our intelligence community found itself targeting not soldiers on the battlefield, but suspected spies, foreign leaders, and even American citizens. Throughout the second half of the twentieth century, NSA played a vital, often fraught and controversial role in the major events of the Cold War, from the Korean War to the Cuban Missile Crisis to Vietnam and beyond.
In Code Warriors, Stephen Budiansky—a longtime expert in cryptology—tells the fascinating story of how NSA came to be, from its roots in World War II through the fall of the Berlin Wall. Along the way, he guides us through the fascinating challenges faced by cryptanalysts, and how they broke some of the most complicated codes of the twentieth century. With access to new documents, Budiansky shows where the agency succeeded and failed during the Cold War, but his account also offers crucial perspective for assessing NSA today in the wake of the Edward Snowden revelations. Budiansky shows how NSA’s obsession with recording every bit of data and decoding every signal is far from a new development; throughout its history the depth and breadth of the agency’s reach has resulted in both remarkable successes and destructive failures.
Featuring a series of appendixes that explain the technical details of Soviet codes and how they were broken, this is a rich and riveting history of the underbelly of the Cold War, and an essential and timely read for all who seek to understand the origins of the modern NSA.
More than forty years after it ended, the Vietnam War continues to haunt our country. We still argue over why we were there, whether we could have won, and who was right and wrong in their response to the conflict. When the war divided the country, it created deep political fault lines that continue to divide us today. Now, continuing in the tradition of their critically acclaimed collaborations, the authors draw on dozens and dozens of interviews in America and Vietnam to give us the perspectives of people involved at all levels of the war- US and Vietnamese soldiers and their families, high-level officials in America and Vietnam, antiwar protestors, POWs, and many more. The book plunges us into the chaos and intensity of combat, even as it explains the rationale that got us into Vietnam and kept us there for so many years. Rather than taking sides, the book seeks to understand why the war happened the way it did, and to clarify its complicated legacy. Beautifully written and richly illustrated, this is a tour de force that is certain to launch a new national conversation.
On September 9, 1971, nearly 1,300 prisoners took over the Attica Correctional Facility in upstate New York to protest years of mistreatment. Holding guards and civilian employees hostage, the prisoners negotiated with officials for improved conditions during the four long days and nights that followed.
On September 13, the state abruptly sent hundreds of heavily armed troopers and correction officers to retake the prison by force. Their gunfire killed thirty-nine men—hostages as well as prisoners—and severely wounded more than one hundred others. In the ensuing hours, weeks, and months, troopers and officers brutally retaliated against the prisoners. And, ultimately, New York State authorities prosecuted only the prisoners, never once bringing charges against the officials involved in the retaking and its aftermath and neglecting to provide support to the survivors and the families of the men who had been killed.
Drawing from more than a decade of extensive research, historian Heather Ann Thompson sheds new light on every aspect of the uprising and its legacy, giving voice to all those who took part in this forty-five-year fight for justice: prisoners, former hostages, families of the victims, lawyers and judges, and state officials and members of law enforcement. Blood in the Water is the searing and indelible account of one of the most important civil rights stories of the last century. (With black-and-white photos throughout)
WINNER OF THE 2017 PULITZER PRIZE IN HISTORY
WINNER OF THE 2017 BANCROFT PRIZE
NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FINALIST
LOS ANGELES TIMES BOOK PRIZE FINALIST
NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK FOR 2016
NAMED A BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR BY THE BOSTON GLOBE, NEWSWEEK, KIRKUS, AND PUBLISHERS WEEKLY
Tells the remarkable story of the Jewish moguls in Hollywood who established the first anti-Nazi Jewish resistance organization in the country in the 1930s
In April 1939, Warner Brothers studios released the first Hollywood film to confront the Nazi threat in the United States. Confessions of a Nazi Spy, starring Edward G. Robinson, told the story of German agents in New York City working to overthrow the U.S. government. The film alerted Americans to the dangers of Nazism at home and encouraged them to defend against it.
Confessions of a Nazi Spy may have been the first cinematic shot fired by Hollywood against Nazis in America, but it by no means marked the political awakening of the film industry’s Jewish executives to the problem. Hollywood’s Spies tells the remarkable story of the Jewish moguls in Hollywood who paid private investigators to infiltrate Nazi groups operating in Los Angeles, establishing the first anti-Nazi Jewish resistance organization in the country—the Los Angeles Jewish Community Committee (LAJCC).
Drawing on more than 15,000 pages of archival documents, Laura B. Rosenzweig offers a compelling narrative illuminating the role that Jewish Americans played in combating insurgent Nazism in the United States in the 1930s. Forced undercover by the anti-Semitic climate of the decade, the LAJCC partnered with organizations whose Americanism was unimpeachable, such as the American Legion, to channel information regarding seditious Nazi plots to Congress, the Justice Department, the FBI and the Los Angeles Police Department.
Hollywood’s Spies corrects the decades-long belief that American Jews lacked the political organization and leadership to assert their political interests during this period in our history and reveals that the LAJCC was one of many covert "fact finding" operations funded by Jewish Americans designed to root out Nazism in the United States.
Published in 1998 and awarded the Pulitzer Prize for History, GOTHAM: A History of New York to 1898 established itself as the peerless account of America's greatest city, from its beginnings as a settlement of Indian Tribes around the island of Manna-hata to the consolidation of the five boroughs. It told a story as vast and as varied as the city it chronicled, revealing the degree to which the history of New York reflected and guided the story of our nation.
In Greater Gotham Mike Wallace, co-author of GOTHAM, picks up the story of New York at the critical juncture of 1898 and carries it forward during the period when it became not just the country's greatest urban center but a megapolis on an international scale, and with global reach. Between consolidation and the end of World War One, New York was transformed and transforming, mirroring the juggernauting dynamism of the country at large--and largely fueling it. The names of two its streets encapsulate the degree of the city's preeminence: Wall Street and Broadway. Greater Gotham reveals the workings of the city's consolidation; the emerging hegemony of its financial markets, which effectively reconstructed U.S. capitalism; the influx of migrants from other continents and from the American South; the development of its massive infrastructure--subways and waterways and electrical grid; and New York's growing dominance over the arts, media, and entertainment. It captures and illuminates the swings of prosperity and downturn, from the 1898 skyscraper-driven boom, to the Bankers' Panic of 1907, to the labor upheavals and repressions during and after the World War One. By 1920, New York was the second-largest city in the world and arguably its new capital.
Long awaited and eagerly anticipated, Greater Gotham is the product of years of research and writing. Utterly immersive, endlessly enlightening, and worthy of the subject that has inspired it, this volume matches in breadth, scope, and page-turning appeal its predecessor, and takes it further.
In 1778 Great Britain launched a second invasion of the southern colonies as part of the southern strategy for victory in the American Revolutionary War. A force of 3,000 British soldiers, Hessians and Loyalists was dispatched from New York City to capture Savannah, capital of the State of Georgia. The city fell in December 1778, and became a base for British operations in the southern colonies. Desperate to regain one of the most important southern cities, Continental troops under General Benjamin Lincoln joined forces with a French naval expedition under the Admiral Charles-Henri d'Estaing in an an all-out assault on the British fortified positions protecting Savannah. This fully illustrated study examines the costly French and Patriot attempts to retake Savannah. Replete with stunning artwork and specially commissioned maps, this is the complete story of one of the bloodiest campaigns of the American Revolutionary War.
From 1501 to 1867 more than 12.5 million Africans were brought to the Americas in chains, and many millions died as a result of the slave trade. The US constitution set a 20-year time limit on US participation in the trade, and on January 1, 1808, it was abolished. And yet, despite the spread of abolitionism on both sides of the Atlantic, despite numerous laws and treaties passed to curb the slave trade, and despite the dispatch of naval squadrons to patrol the coasts of Africa and the Americas, the slave trade did not end in 1808. Fully 25 percent of all the enslaved Africans to arrive in the Americas were brought after the US ban – 3.2 million people.
This breakthrough history, based on years of research into private correspondence; shipping manifests; bills of laden; port, diplomatic, and court records; and periodical literature, makes undeniably clear how decisive illegal slavery was to the making of the United States. US economic development and westward expansion, as well as the growth and wealth of the North, not just the South, was a direct result and driver of illegal slavery. The Monroe Doctrine was created to protect the illegal slave trade.
In an engrossing, elegant, enjoyably readable narrative, Stephen M. Chambers not only shows how illegal slavery has been wholly overlooked in histories of the early Republic, he reveals the crucial role the slave trade played in the lives and fortunes of figures like John Quincy Adams and the “generation of 1815,” the post-revolution cohort that shaped US foreign policy. This is a landmark history that will forever revise the way the early Republic and American economic development is seen.
The New York Times bestselling author of The Kennedy Women chronicles the powerful and spellbinding true story of a brutal race-based killing in 1981 and subsequent trials that undid one of the most pernicious organizations in American history—the Ku Klux Klan.
On a Friday night in March 1981 Henry Hays and James Knowles scoured the streets of Mobile in their car, hunting for a black man. The young men were members of Klavern 900 of the United Klans of America. They were seeking to retaliate after a largely black jury could not reach a verdict in a trial involving a black man accused of the murder of a white man. The two Klansmen found nineteen-year-old Michael Donald walking home alone. Hays and Knowles abducted him, beat him, cut his throat, and left his body hanging from a tree branch in a racially mixed residential neighborhood.
Arrested, charged, and convicted, Hays was sentenced to death—the first time in more than half a century that the state of Alabama sentenced a white man to death for killing a black man. On behalf of Michael’s grieving mother, Morris Dees, the legendary civil rights lawyer and cofounder of the Southern Poverty Law Center, filed a civil suit against the members of the local Klan unit involved and the UKA, the largest Klan organization. Charging them with conspiracy, Dees put the Klan on trial, resulting in a verdict that would level a deadly blow to its organization.
Based on numerous interviews and extensive archival research, The Lynching brings to life two dramatic trials, during which the Alabama Klan’s motives and philosophy were exposed for the evil they represent. In addition to telling a gripping and consequential story, Laurence Leamer chronicles the KKK and its activities in the second half the twentieth century, and illuminates its lingering effect on race relations in America today.
The Lynching includes sixteen pages of black-and-white photographs.
An expansive overview of our storehouses of knowledge, from the earliest library building (Philadelphia, 1745) to midcentury modern and beyond. Although new technologies appear poised to alter it, the library remains a powerful site for discovery, and its form is still determined by the geometry of the book and the architectural spaces devised to store and display it. American Libraries provides a history and panorama of these much-loved structures, inside and out, encompassing the small personal collection, the vast university library, and everything in between. Through 500 photographs and plans selected from the encyclopedic collections of the Library of Congress, Kenneth Breisch traces the development of libraries in the United States, from roots in such iconic examples as the British Library and Paris's Bibliotheque-Ste.-Genevieve to institutions imbued with their own, American mythology. Starting with the private collections of wealthy merchants and landowners during the eighteenth century, the book looks at the Library of Congress, large and small public libraries, and the Carnegie libraries, and it ends with a glimpse of modern masterworks.850 illustrations
Was Americas response to the 9/11 attacks at the root of todays instability and terror? Because of various factors, including climate change, ISIS, the war in Syria, the growing numbers of immigrants, and the growing strength of fascist parties in Europe, commentators have increasingly been pointing out that the chaos in the world today was sparked by the post-9/11 attacks on Afghanistan and Iraq. At the same time, there has also been much discussion of ways in which the Bush-Cheney administrations response to 9/11 has damaged America itself by stimulating Islamophobia and fascist sentiments, undermining key elements in its Constitution, moving towards a police state, and in general weakening its democracy. While the first two parts of this book discuss various ways in which 9/11 has ruined America and the world, the third part discusses a question that is generally avoided: Were the Bush-Cheney attacks on Afghanistan and Iraq really at the root of the ruination of America and the world in general, or did the original sin lie in 9/11 itself?
Born into but escaped from slavery, Frederick Douglass-orator, journalist, autobiographer; revolutionary on behalf of a just America-was a towering figure, at once consummately charismatic and flawed. His Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass (1845) galvanised the antislavery movement and is one of the truly seminal works of African-American literature. In this Lincoln Prize-winning biography, William S. McFeely captures the many sides of Douglass- his boyhood on the Chesapeake; his self-education; his rebellion and rising expectations; his marriage, affairs, and intense friendships; his bitter defeat and transcendent courage - and re-creates the high drama of a turbulent era.
A surprising work of narrative history and detection that illuminates one of the most daring―and long-forgotten―heroes of the Civil War.
Independence Day, 1861. The schooner S. J. Waring sets sail from New York on a routine voyage to South America. Seventeen days later, it limps back into New York’s frenzied harbor with the ship's black steward, William Tillman, at the helm. While the story of that ill-fated voyage is one of the most harrowing tales of captivity and survival on the high seas, it has, almost unbelievably, been lost to history.
Now reclaiming Tillman as the real American hero he was, historian Brian McGinty dramatically returns readers to that riotous, explosive summer of 1861, when the country was tearing apart at the seams and the Union army was in near shambles following a humiliating defeat at the First Battle of Bull Run. Desperate for good news, the North was soon riveted by reports of an incident that occurred a few hundred miles off the coast of New York, where the Waring had been overtaken by a marauding crew of Confederate privateers. While the white sailors became chummy with their Southern captors, free black man William Tillman was perfectly aware of the fate that awaited him in the ruthless, slave-filled ports south of the Mason-Dixon Line. Stealthily biding his time until a moonlit night nine days after the capture, Tillman single-handedly killed three officers of the privateer crew, then took the wheel and pointed it home. Yet, with no experience as a navigator, only one other helper, and a war-torn Atlantic seaboard to contend with, his struggle had just begun.
It took five perilous days at sea―all thrillingly recounted here―before the Waring returned to New York Harbor, where the story of Tillman's shipboard courage became such a tabloid sensation that he was not only put on the bill of Barnum’s American Museum but also proclaimed to be the "first hero" of the Civil War. As McGinty evocatively shows, however, in the horrors of the war then engulfing the nation, memories of his heroism―even of his identity―were all but lost to history.
As such, The Rest I Will Kill becomes a thrilling and historically significant work, as well as an extraordinary journey that recounts how a free black man was able to defy efforts to make him a slave and become an unlikely glimmer of hope for a disheartened Union army in the war-battered North.
8 pages of illustrations
At the outset of the American Civil War, the Union Army's sharpshooters were initially equipped with the M1855 Colt revolving rifle, but it was prone to malfunction. Instead, the North's sharpshooters preferred the Sharps rifle, an innovative breech-loading weapon capable of firing up to ten shots per minute - more than three times the rate of fire offered by the standard-issue Springfield .58-caliber rifled musket. Other Union sharpshooters were equipped with the standard-issue Springfield rifled musket or the .56-56-caliber Spencer Repeating Rifle. Conversely, the Confederacy favoured the Pattern 1853 Enfield rifled musket for its sharpshooters and also imported from Britain the Whitworth Rifle, a .45-caliber, single-shot, muzzle-loading weapon distinguished by its use of a twisted hexagonal barrel. Featuring specially commissioned artwork, this is the engrossing story of the innovative rifles that saw combat in the hands of sharpshooters on both sides during the Civil War.
Some Confederates called him a Bluebelly, Mudsill, and even a Lincolnite (for President Abraham Lincoln), but the name that has carried down through the decades is simply Billy Yank. Author Lance Herdegen tells his fascinating multi-faceted story in Union Soldiers in the American Civil War.
Union Soldiers offers a complete guide for Civil War enthusiasts of all ages. Herdegen employs nearly 100 photographs coupled with clear and concise prose broken down into short, easy to understand chapters to better understand these men. Coverage includes such varied topics as the organization of the Union Army, learning to be soldiers, winter campaigning, photography, sick call, nurses, religion, discipline, prisoner of war camps, weaponry, uniforms, as well as numbers and losses and the strengths of the various Union armies. It also examines the participation of U.S. Color Troops and the role played by African Americans during the Civil War.
This handy reference book includes a list of Civil War points of interest, some bookshelf suggestions, and a glossary of Civil War terms. Experienced Civil War buffs will find Union Soldiers in the American Civil War an invaluable quick reference guide, and one that makes an excellent gift for introducing the Civil War to anyone of any age.
Many thousands of books have been written about the Civil War, but only a handful cover the story of the Southern soldiers and sailors who wore the gray uniform and fought for the Confederacy.
Confederate Soldiers in the American Civil War offers a complete guide for Civil War enthusiasts of all ages. Using a format similar to his highly successful The New Civil War Handbook, author Mark Hughes employs more than 200 photographs coupled with clear and concise prose broken down into short, easy to understand chapters to better understand these men.
Coverage includes life in camp, weapons, battles, technology, hospitals, prisons, the naval war, artillery, uniforms, and much more. Hughes also discusses African and Native American participation in the war, and the war's effect on civilians in general and women in particular. Also included is a timeline of the war, dozens of quotations from Confederate soldiers, a complete glossary, and an extensive list of Civil War sites around the country, including contact and website information. Hughes includes a helpful chapter detailing the Civil War on the Internet, listing some of the most comprehensive and popular blogs and websites. He completes his work with a gallery of photographs and the stories of more than 80 Confederate Soldiers and a guide to researching your Confederate ancestor.
Experienced Civil War buffs will find Confederate Soldiers in the American Civil War an invaluable quick reference guide, and one that makes an excellent gift for introducing the Civil War to anyone of any age.
In 1942, Japanese forces invaded the island of New Guinea and started a bitter, three-year campaign against allied Australian and American forces. Fought in dense jungles and across rugged mountaintops, the grueling fight pushed men to their very limits and forced commanders to adopt new strategies and tactics for the harsh island terrain. Filled with new rules, scenarios, and unit types, this supplement for Bolt Action provides players with all of the information they need to set their games in this unforgiving battlefield.
October 1917, heralded as the culmination of the Russian Revolution, remains a defining moment in world history. Even a hundred years after the events that led to the emergence of the world's first self-proclaimed socialist state, debate continues over whether, as historian E. H. Carr put it decades ago, these earth-shaking days were a "landmark in the emancipation of mankind from past oppression" or "a crime and a disaster." Some things are clear. After the implosion of the three-hundred-year-old Romanov dynasty as a result of the First World War, Russia was in crisis-one interim government replaced another in the vacuum left by imperial collapse.
In this monumental and sweeping new account, Laura Engelstein delves into the seven years of chaos surrounding 1917 --the war, the revolutionary upheaval, and the civil strife it provoked. These were years of breakdown and brutal violence on all sides, punctuated by the decisive turning points of February and October. As Engelstein proves definitively, the struggle for power engaged not only civil society and party leaders, but the broad masses of the population and every corner of the far-reaching empire, well beyond Moscow and Petrograd.
Yet in addition to the bloodshed they unleashed, the revolution and civil war revealed democratic yearnings, even if ideas of what constituted "democracy" differed dramatically. Into that vacuum left by the Romanov collapse rushed long-suppressed hopes and dreams about social justice and equality. But any possible experiment in self-rule was cut short by the October Revolution. Under the banner of true democracy, and against all odds, the Bolshevik triumph resulted in the ruthless repression of all opposition. The Bolsheviks managed to harness the social breakdown caused by the war and institutionalize violence as a method of state-building, creating a new society and a new form of power.
Russia in Flames offers a compelling narrative of heroic effort and brutal disappointment, revealing that what happened during these seven years was both a landmark in the emancipation of Russia from past oppression and a world-shattering disaster. As regimes fall and rise, as civil wars erupt, as state violence targets civilian populations, it is a story that remains profoundly and enduringly relevant.
The Iasi-Kishinev Operation, 20-29 August 1944: The Red Army's Summer Offensive into the Balkans details the Soviet preparation and conduct of the Red Army's massive offensive into Romania in the summer of 1944. The seventh of the ten strategic operations conducted by the Soviet armed forces that year, the operation successfully carried out the task of destroying German forces in northern Romania and taking Germany's Romanian satellite out of the war, and was the first step in Stalin's consolidation of a Balkan empire.
The study, unlike many others in this series, is based only in part on materials published by the Soviet General Staff's historical section. Nonetheless, this and other material was written and published for the purpose of generalizing the experience of the war's experience for training commanders and staffs in the preparation and conduct of multi-front offensive operations.
The study is divided into two parts. The first deals with the operation as a whole. This includes the preparations by the Second and Third Ukrainian fronts for launching the operation. This includes an overall strategic appreciation of the situation as it obtained by the summer of 1944 and the Stavka's instructions for carrying out an operation along the southern strategic direction.
This is followed by a minute examination of the two fronts' plans for organizing and exploiting a breakthrough of the enemy front, as well as the individual army commanders' plans for their own sectors. The study concentrates on such standard operational indices as the length of the attack front, the density of forces along the breakthrough front, the echeloning of forces for the attack, and cooperation among the combat arms. Whereas the first part offers an operational-strategic overview of the operation, the second is firmly focused at the tactical-operational level.
This study is actually a doctoral dissertation dealing with the Third Ukrainian Front's 37th Army, which played the leading role in the front's offensive across the Dnestr River, from where it subsequently linked up with the Second Ukrainian Front's forces to encircle the German Sixth Army. Many of the operational indices highlighted in the first part are repeated here in even greater detail.
The successful conclusion of the Iasi-Kishinev operation destroyed the German position in the Balkans and laid the groundwork for the Red Army's subsequent advance into Hungary and Central Europe. As one of the army's more successful offensive operations, it is worthy of study by history buffs and professional officers alike.
Modern Spain: 1808 to the Present is a comprehensive overview of Spanish history from the Napoleonic era to the present day. Places a large emphasis on Spain's place within broader European and global history The chronological political narrative is enriched by separate chapters on long term economic, social and cultural developments This presentation of modern Spanish history incorporates the latest thinking on key issues of modernity, social movements, nationalism, democratization and democracy.
Two critically acclaimed and internationally bestselling tales of World War II espionage from the master of suspense, Ben Macintyre
One December night in 1942, a Nazi parachutist landed in a Cambridgeshire field. His mission- to sabotage the British war effort. His name was Eddie Chapman, but he would shortly become MI5 's Agent Zigzag. Dashing and louche, courageous and unpredictable, inside the traitor was a hero; inside the villain, a man of conscience. The problem for Chapman, his many lovers and his spymasters, was knowing where one ended and the other began -
In April 1943, a corpse later identified as Major William Martin of the Royal Marines is discovered floating in the sea off the coast of Spain. A leather attache case, secured to his belt, reveals an intelligence gold mine- top-secret Allies ' invasion plans. But Major William Martin never existed. The body is that of a dead tramp and every single document is fake. It was the most extraordinary deception ever planned by Churchill 's spies, and an outrageous lie that travelled all the way to Hitler 's desk.
In these two Sunday Times No. 1 bestsellers, Ben Macintyre weaves together diaries, letters, photographs, memories and top-secret MI5 files into exhilarating accounts of undercover daring and deceit.
A gripping narrative of the Truman Administration's response to the fall of Nationalist China and the triumph of Mao Zedong's Communist forces in 1949 - an extraordinary political revolution that continues to shape East Asian politics to this day.
In the opening months of 1949, U.S. President Harry S. Truman found himself faced with a looming diplomatic catastrophe - "perhaps the greatest that this country has ever suffered," as the journalist Walter Lippmann put it. Throughout the spring and summer, Mao Zedong's Communist armies fanned out across mainland China, annihilating the rival troops of America's one-time ally Chiang Kai-shek and taking control of Beijing, Shanghai, and other major cities. As Truman and his aides - including his shrewd, ruthless secretary of state, Dean Acheson - scrambled to formulate a response, they were forced to contend not only with Mao, but also with unrelenting political enemies at home, in Congress and even within the administration. Over the course of this tumultuous year, Mao fashioned a new revolutionary government in Beijing, laying the foundation for the creation of modern China, while Chiang Kai-shek fled to the island sanctuary of Taiwan. These events transformed American foreign policy - leading, ultimately, to decades of friction with Communist China, a long-standing U.S. commitment to Taiwan, and the subsequent wars in Korea and Vietnam.
Drawing on Chinese and Russian sources, as well as recently declassified CIA documents, Kevin Peraino tells the story of this remarkable year through the eyes of the key players, including Mao Zedong, President Truman, Secretary of State Acheson, Minnesota congressman Walter Judd, and Madame Chiang Kai-shek, the influential first lady of the Republic of China. Truman and his administration struggled to navigate a disorienting new political landscape that was being reshaped daily by the emerging technology of television, the rising tensions of the Cold War with the Soviet Union, and growing fears of spying, infiltration, and Russia's acquisition of the atomic bomb.
Today, the legacy of 1949 is more relevant than ever to the relationships between China, the United States, and the rest of the world, as Beijing asserts its claims in the South China Sea and tensions endure between Taiwan and the mainland. Yet at the heart of the book is a story for any season - a thoughtful and moving examination of the fierce determination of the human will.
In 1942 the battle-hardened troops of the Japanese army overran Burma with frightening speed despite opposition from Indian and British troops, triggering the exodus of half a million people who abandoned their homes and set off on foot for India.
They included people from all walks of life: the elderly, pregnant women, children. Ill equipped and provisioned, they were not prepared for a trek of several hundred miles through dense jungle and steep mountains. Disease, starvation and exhaustion claimed thousands whose graves lie unmarked in some of the most inhospitable terrain in the world, while hundreds drowned in the mud as the monsoon turned valleys into swamps and rivers into torrents. Even six months later jungle tracks were lined with the bones of those who had died trying to escape.
Survivors lost everything. Scarred by their ordeal, most refused to speak of the nights sleeping among corpses, or the daily struggle for survival. Here diaries, letters and official documents have been drawn on to bring to life this shocking episode in the British Empire's history. Felicity Goodall has retraced the routes taken by these refugees, her travels adding empathy and understanding to the story of those forced to flee battlefield Burma.
Buoyed by the success of the 1st and 2nd Australian divisions in the Battle of Menin Road, the men of the 4th and 5th Australian divisions filed into the front line ready for the next phase of the battle. Ahead of them lay the blackened remnants of Polygon Wood, a desolate expanse of splintered stumps shattered by the devastating shellfire.
The view across no man's land revealed lines of German barbed wire and a criss-cross of heavily defended trenches. Here and there the Australians could also see solid concrete pillboxes dotted around the landscape. In the centre of the battlefield sat a huge man-made mound of earth - the Butte. Once the stop-butte for an old artillery range, this dominating feature was fortified with machine-guns, laced with barbed wire and riddled with tunnels and dugouts.
The Battle of Polygon Wood was the second phase in the British forces' advance on Passchendaele. Success at Polygon Wood would place Broodseinde Ridge within the Second Army's reach. But the entire operation was almost blindsided by a German counter-attack on the eve of the battle.
The critical situation on the Anzac Corps right was only saved by Pompey Elliott's 15th Brigade whose desperate efforts to contain the German attack and seize the Second Army's objectives turned a 'fine success' into a 'splendid victory'. But, as author Jonathan Passlow describes in Polygon Wood 1917, this was a victory that was by no means assured and in which luck would play its part.
World War I was the Golden Age of the railway gun. Even though at the start of the conflict none of the armies possessed any railway artillery pieces and the very idea was comparatively new, more railway guns were used during this war than in any other conflict. Designed to break the stalemate of trench warfare, the first railway guns were simple, improvised designs made by mounting surplus coastal defence, fortress, and naval guns onto existing commercial railway carriages. As the war dragged on, railway artillery development shifted to longer range guns that could shell targets deep behind enemy lines. This change of role brought much larger and more sophisticated guns often manufactured by mounting long-barrel naval guns to specially-designed railway carriages. This book details the design and development of railway guns during World War I from the very first basic designs to massive purpose built monster railway guns. Accompanying the text are many rare, never-before-published, photographs and colour illustrations depicting how these weapons were used during World War I.
The idea of the armed, combat-configured unmanned aerial vehicle entered the 21st Century in the same manner as the idea of military airplanes had entered the 20th Century. It was an untried and untested concept suddenly thrust into the spotlight in an unexpected global war. By 1999, few people outside the military recognized the potential of armed, unmanned flying vehicles, or Unmanned Combat Air Vehicles (UCAVs), as they were called. Today, UCAVs form a vital arm of U.S. strike forces and are controlled from halfway around the world.
In this book, the author picks up the UCAV story where he left off in his 2010 Specialty Press book Birds of Prey: Predators, Reapers and America's Newest UAVs in Combat. Since that time, both technology and battlefield doctrine have evolved considerably and this book is a new window into that world. It provides a detailed look inside the present and future of robotic aerial warfare systems and technologies.
Yenne's first book on UCAVs covered the period of early development through the end of the 20th Century. Drone Strike! takes you from that time through today's latest technical wonders, covering such amazing unmanned aircraft capabilities as aerial refueling and landing aboard aircraft carriers even more accurately than manned aircraft. This book also contains recently declassified photographs of the latest U.S. Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicles.
Ostensibly fought for control of Swedish iron ore to Germany, the Norwegian Campaign made an important but largely overlooked contribution to the conduct of the Second World War. It convincingly proved the supremacy of air power in modern warfare and, particularly, the vulnerability of land and sea forces to sustained undefended air assault. It was the first conflict in which one side, the Germans, used all three arms of their forces in integrated combined assault-Blitzkreig-and in which parachute and glider-borne troops were used to secure airfields and strategic targets. In contrast, the Allies tried to conduct the campaign on land, with an overreliance on infantrymen and inadequate air support.
The book deals with the strategic and political imperatives in an integrated and comprehensive manner, as well as operations, in a complex and rapidly changing two-month campaign.While other books on the campaign have tended to focus on a limited perspective, such as naval operations or the higher levels of political decision making, with no combatant or personal perspective; this book makes much use of many previously unpublished contemporary writings and eyewitness accounts of the people actually involved in the Norwegian Campaign.
When Britain declared war against Germany in September 1939, thousands of young men sailed across the English Channel to fight for their country. Among them were the seven soldiers who share their stories in this book. Some joined up out of patriotism, others for adventure or the prospect of a secure wage. They were fit, trained and proud to wear the armband of the British Expeditionary Forces.
For many, the first months were strangely peaceful, but when the Germans invaded in May 1940 they advanced with shocking speed. The German armoured columns sliced through neutral Holland and Belgium. The French Army collapsed and within a week the soldiers of the BEF were forced to retreat. Fighting tough and bloody rearguard actions, they endured relentless shelling and fearsome dive-bomb attacks. Constantly on the move, and facing a German onslaught on three fronts, they were soon exhausted, hungry and low on ammunition. They headed finally to their one chance of salvation- the beaches of Dunkirk.
Mike Rossiter tells the stories of seven veterans who went through a hellish baptism of fire in the first battles on the front line, and fought in the last-ditch defence of Dunkirk. They saw their comrades bombed and drowned off the beaches. Their accounts give us a fascinating and privileged insight into the reality of the war and what it was really like to face the German Blitzkrieg in 1940. They take us from the confident, idyllic days of the phoney war in the French countryside to the sudden shock of battle, from the fear and confusion of retreat to the wait for an uncertain rescue. These are the compelling stories of seven men who are proud to say I Fought at Dunkirk.
Soldiers in the trenches were issued with four bullets a day unless they were either snipers or manned a machine gun. This does not seem like a lot of bullets. However, four bullets a day is 28 per week. Therefore a million soldiers need 28 million bullets per week.
Of course there were a lot more than a million troops at the Western Front, so the number of required bullets was more than that! I realise that some of the soldiers performed vital service functions and some were busy on other duties, nevertheless there was a need for a lot of bullets. Supplying the troops was further complicated by the need to ensure that the many and varied shells were available for the howitzers, mortars and other artillery. Furthermore, there was a need for essential supplies of a whole manner of other materials, including rations for the troops and food for the many horses. Aircraft and tanks also started to make an appearance on the battlefield at this time which required supplies.
Indeed there is one account of a horse drawn cart carrying aircraft fuel to the aeroplanes! The move to modern technology must have been interesting to watch. The static nature of battle was somewhat unique in the annals of warfare and led to the use of a narrow gauge railway network and a roll on roll off ferry port in Kent to speed deliveries along. Unfortunately, not all of the traffic was towards the trenches. Sadly there were many casualties who needed to return to the hospitals either in the field or back in Britain. The returning trains performed this vital function. Servicing this supply chain was a complex business, leading to some interesting issues.
From prompting a transition from hunter-gatherer, to an agrarian lifestyle in ancient Mesopotamia, to bankrolling Britain's imperialist conquests, strategic taxation and the regulation of beer has played a pivotal role throughout history. Beeronomics: How Beer Explains the World tells these stories, and many others, whilst also exploring the key innovations that propelled the industrialization and consolidation of the beer market.
At the same time when mega-mergers in the brewing industry are creating huge transnationals selling their beer across the globe, the craft beer movement in America and Europe has brought the rich history of ancient brewing techniques to the forefront in recent years. But less talked about is the economic influence of this beverage on the world and the myriad ways it has shaped the course of history. Beeronomics covers world history through the lens of beer, exploring the common role that beer taxation has played throughout and providing context for recognizable brands and consumer trends and tastes.
Beeronomics examines key developments that have moved the brewing industry forward. Its most ubiquitous ingredient, hops, was used by the Hanseatic League to establish the export dominance of Hamburg and Bremen in the sixteenth century. During the late nineteenth century, bottom-fermentation led to the spread of industrial lager beer. Industrial innovations in bottling, refrigeration, and TV advertising paved the way for the consolidation and market dominance of major macrobreweries like Anheuser Busch in America and Artois Brewery in Belgium during the twentieth century.
We're now in the era of global integration - one multinational AB InBev, claims 46% of all beer profits - but there's a counterrevolution afoot of small, independent craft breweries in America, Belgium and around the world. Beeronomics surveys these trends, giving context to why you see which brands and styles on shelves at your local supermarket or on tap at the nearby pub.
From hallucinogenic mushrooms and LSD, to coca and cocaine; from Homeric warriors and the Assassins to the first Gulf War and today's global insurgents - drugs have sustained warriors in the field and have been used as weapons of warfare, either as non-lethal psychochemical weapons or as a means of subversion. Lukasz Kamienski explores why and how drugs have been issued to soldiers to increase their battlefield performance, boost their courage and alleviate stress and fear - as well as for medical purposes. He also delves into the history of psychoactive substances that combatants 'self-prescribe', a practice which dates as far back as the Vikings. Shooting Up is a comprehensive and original history of the relationship between fighting men and intoxicants, from Antiquity till the present day, and looks at how drugs will determine the wars of the future in unforeseen and remarkable ways.
Poised between earth and heaven, the material and the spiritual, burial places are amongst the most important sites ever built.
Man is the only animal that knows it is going to die and since the dawn of civilization he has made provision for a last resting place that would ensure that his memory lived on. In this endeavour he has been remarkably successful. The grand tombs and mausoleums of long dead rulers have withstood the ravages of the centuries. Down at the level of the common man, cemeteries are amongst the built landscape's most immutable elements. They rarely change, except to add more occupants.
Great Burial Places explores twenty-two of the world's great burial precincts, from dynastic necropolises such as the Valley of the Kings in Egypt and the Ming Tombs in China to cemeteries such as Pere Lachaise in Paris and the Zentralfriedhof in Vienna where the most famous people of their age share a last resting place with tens of thousands of their undistinguished fellow citizens.
For centuries people have made pilgrimages to the tombs of kings and saints to venerate those who lie there. Today, a surprising number of people engage in tombstone tourism, as it is sometimes dismissively termed. Who goes to London without visiting Westminster Abbey, or to Paris without visiting Pere Lachaise, or to Rome without visiting St. Peter's Basilica? There is something irresistible about visiting the last resting places of the famous, about standing in the presence of genius, about making contact, albeit indirect, with those who have left their mark on the world.
Great Burial Places will prove a delight to taphophiles as well as to general readers of enquiring mind who wish to explore some of the world's greatest architectural and cultural sites from a fresh perspective.