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A thrilling, moment by moment account of an epic World War II escape and the real-life adventures that followed. On August 30, 1942 - 'Zero Night' - 40 Allied officers staged the most audacious mass escape of World War II. Months of meticulous planning and secret training hung in the balance during three minutes of mayhem as the officers boldly stormed the huge double fences at Oflag Prison. Employing wooden ladders and bridges previously disguised as bookshelves, the highly coordinated effort succeeded and set 36 men free into the German countryside. Later known as the 'Warburg Wire Job', fellow prisoner and fighter ace Douglas Bader once described the attempt as 'the most brilliant escape conception of this war'. The first author to tackle this remarkable story in detail, historian Mark Felton brilliantly evokes the suspense of the escape and the adventures of those escapees who managed to elude the Germans, as well as the courage of the civilians who risked their lives to help them in enemy territory. Fantastically intimate and told with a novelist's eye for drama and detail, this rip-roaring adventure is all the more thrilling because it really happened.

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Genre: History
Author: Mark Felton
Publisher: Macmillan
Release: 2015-08-25
File: 320 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781466885257

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Throughout WWII, thousands of Allied prisoners dreamed of outwitting their captors and returning to war against the Axis. Their ingenuity knew no bounds: they went over the barbed wire surrounding them and under it as well; they built tunnels of enormous length and complexity, often working with only their bare hands. They concealed themselves in their captors’ vehicles and hitched rides to freedom. They became world-class forgers and tailors; they stole anything that might be useful to their escapes that wasn’t actually red-hot or nailed down. Some of them made it to freedom; some did not. Many of those who failed simply tried again and again until they succeeded. Some of the escapers who were caught were murdered by the Japanese or the German Gestapo. That did not stop others from risking torture or death to gain their freedom. Many men whose break was initially successful would not have survived save for the dangerous, selfless help of civilians, especially in occupied Europe and the Philippine Islands. The stories in The Greatest Escapes of WWII highlight the courage, endurance, and ingenuity of Allied prisoners, chronicling their ceaseless efforts and the alarm that spread far and wide when one or more escaped. These escapes tied up thousands of Axis soldiers who might otherwise have prolonged the war for many more bloody months. The troops committed to guard the Allied prisoners and recapture escapers numbered in the hundreds of thousands.

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Genre: History
Author: Col. Robert Barr Smith
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Release: 2016-10-01
File: 272 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781493026630

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The true and heroic story of American POWs' daring escape from a Nazi concentration camp. In this little-known story from World War II, a group of American POW camp leaders risk everything to save hundreds of fellow servicemen from a diabolical Nazi concentration camp. Their story begins in the dark forests of the Ardennes during Christmas 1944 and ends at the Buchenwald Concentration Camp in the spring of 1945. This appalling chapter of US military history and uplifting Holocaust story deserves to be widely known and understood. Operation Swallow provides a historical, first person perspective of how American GIs stood up against their evil SS captors who were forcing them to work as slave laborers. A young GI is thrust into a leadership position and leads his fellow servicemen on a daring escape. It is a story filled with courage, sacrifice, torture, despair, and salvation. A compelling narrative-driven nonfiction book has not been written that takes the reader deep into the dark story of Operation 'Swallow' and Berga Concentration Camp--until now. Written from personal testimonies and official documents, Operation Swallow is a tale replete with high adventure, compelling characters, human drama, tragedy, and eventual salvation, from the pen of a master of the modern military narrative.

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Genre: History
Author: Mark Felton
Publisher: Center Street
Release: 2019-10-15
File: 304 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781546076438

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July 1945. Eighteen young British, Australian and New Zealand special forces from a top-secret underwater warfare unit prepare to undertake three audacious missions against the Japanese. Using XE-craft midget submarines, the raiders will creep deep behind Japanese lines to sink two huge warships off Singapore and sever two vitally important undersea communications cables. Success will hasten ultimate victory over Japan; but if any of the men are captured they can expect a gruesome execution. Can the Sea Devils overcome Japanese defences, mechanical failures, oxygen poisoning and submarine disasters to fulfil their missions? Mark Felton tells the true story of a band of young men living on raw courage, nerves and adrenalin as they attempt to pull off what could be the last great raid of World War Two.

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Genre: History
Author: Mark Felton
Publisher: Icon Books Ltd
Release: 2015-07-30
File: 334 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781848319097

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The astonishing, never before told story of the greatest rescue mission of World War II—when the OSS set out to recover more than 500 airmen trapped behind enemy lines in Yugoslavia... During a bombing campaign over Romanian oil fields, hundreds of American airmen were shot down in Nazi-occupied Yugoslavia. Local Serbian farmers and peasants risked their own lives to give refuge to the soldiers while they waited for rescue, and in 1944, Operation Halyard was born. The risks were incredible. The starving Americans in Yugoslavia had to construct a landing strip large enough for C-47 cargo planes—without tools, without alerting the Germans, and without endangering the villagers. And the cargo planes had to make it through enemy airspace and back—without getting shot down themselves. Classified for over half a century for political reasons, the full account of this unforgettable story of loyalty, self-sacrifice, and bravery is now being told for the first time ever. The Forgotten 500 is the gripping, behind-the-scenes look at the greatest escape of World War II. “Amazing [and] riveting.”—James Bradley, New York Times bestselling author of Flags of Our Fathers

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Genre: History
Author: Gregory A. Freeman
Publisher: Penguin
Release: 2008-09-02
File: 336 Pages
ISBN-13: 1101032340

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The Author, who lives in Shanghai, sets out to demonstrate that the British military has been at the forefront of many of the great changes that have swept China over the last two centuries.??He devotes chapters to the various wars, military adventures and rebellions that regularly punctuated Sino/British relationships since the 1st Opium War 1839-1842. This classic example of Imperial intervention saw the establishment of Hong Kong and Shanghai as key trading centres. The Second Opium War and the Taiping and Boxer Rebellions saw the advancement of British influence despite determined but unsuccessful efforts by the Chinese to loosen the grip of Western domination. The Royal Navy’s might ensured that, by ‘gunboat diplomacy’, trading rights and new posts were established and great fortunes made.??But in the 1940s the British grossly underestimated Japanese military might and intentions with disastrous results. After the Second World War the British returned to find that the Americans had supplanted them. The Communists’ victory in the Civil War sealed British and Western fates and, while Hong Kong remained under British control until 1997, the end of British rule was almost inevitable. But the handover was a masterly piece of pragmatic capitalism and the former Colony remains an economic powerhouse with strong British influence.

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Genre: History
Author: Mark Felton
Publisher: Pen and Sword
Release: 2013-09-02
File: 224 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781781590690

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Ironically while the Japanese Navy followed many of the Royal Navy's traditions and structures, it had a totally different approach to the treatment of its foes. The author has uncovered a plethora of outrages against both servicemen and civilians which make chilling and shocking reading. These range from the execution of POWs, the abandonment of survivors to the elements and certain starvation to the infamous Hell Ships. The author who lives in the Far East examines the different culture that led to these frequent and appalling atrocities. This is a serious and fascinating study of a dark chapter in Naval warfare history.

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Genre: History
Author: Mark Felton
Publisher: Casemate Publishers
Release: 2007-11-15
File: 256 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781844688586

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This book details the treatment of Allied service-women, female civilians and local women by the Japanese occupation forces. While a number of memoirs have been published there is no dedicated volume. It chronicles the massacres of nurses (such as that at Alexandra Hospital, Singapore), disturbing atrocities on both Europeans and Asians, and accounts of imprisonment. It reveals how many ended up in Japanese hands when they should have been evacuated. Also covered are the hardships of long marches and the sexual enslavement of white and native women (so called 'Comfort Women'). The book is a testimony both to the callous and cruel behavior of the Japanese and to the courage and fortitude of those who suffered at their hands.

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Genre: History
Author: Mark Felton
Publisher: Grub Street Publishers
Release: 2010-03-10
File: 176 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781848849662

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This book examines the period between the unconditional surrender of Japan on 14 August 1945, and the arrival of Allied liberation forces in Japanese-occupied territories after 2 September 1945. The delay handed the Japanese a golden opportunity to set their house in order before Allied war crimes investigators arrived. After 14 August groups of Allied POWs were brutally murdered. Vast amounts of documentation concerning crimes were burned ahead of the arrival of Allied forces. POW facilities and medical experimentation installations were either abandoned or destroyed. Perhaps the greatest crimes were continuing deaths of Allied POWs from starvation, disease and ill-treatment after the Japanese surrender. The blame rests with the American authorities, and particularly General MacArthur, Supreme Allied Commander in the Pacific. MacArthur expressly forbade any Allied forces from liberating Japanese occupied territories before he had personally taken the formal Japanese surrender aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay on 2 September 1945. Vice Admiral Lord Mountbatten, Commanding Allied forces in Southeast Asia, protested against this policy, believing that pandering to MacArthurs vanity and ego would mean condemning many starving and sick prisoners to death. Deaths among British and Commonwealth POWs were significant as opposed to American POWs who were already largely liberated in the Philippines and elsewhere.

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Genre: History
Author: Mark Felton
Publisher: Pen and Sword
Release: 2010-06-19
File: 192 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781844684786

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While there have been many fine books covering the appalling experiences and great courage of the many thousands of POWscaptured by the victorious Japanese during late 1941 and early 1942, escape accounts are much rarer. This is due in large part tothe fact that only a comparatively small number of brave souls attempted to escape to freedom rather than suffer brutality,starvation and very possibly death as POWs. However, as Never Surrender vividly describes, there were a significant number who took this desperate course. Escapersfaced challenges far more daunting than those in German hands. They were Westerners in an alien, hostile environment; the terrain and climate were extreme; disease was rife; their physical condition was weak; there was every chance of starvation andbetrayal and, if captured, they faced, at best, the harshest punishment and, at worst, execution. The author draws on escapeattempts from Hong Kong, Thailand, the Philippines, Borneo and China by officers and men of the British, Commonwealth andUS armed forces. As this superbly researched and uplifting book reveals, few escapers found freedom but all are inspiring examples of outstandingand, indeed, desperate courage. The stories told within these pages demonstrate the best and worst of human spirit.

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Genre: History
Author: Mark Felton
Publisher: Casemate Publishers
Release: 2013-06-30
File: 208 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781783830107

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