Monday, January 31, 2011

8. The Second World War: Alone

By:  Winston Churchill
Rated 5 Stars
Audio Book

This is book 2 of Churchill's 4 volume autobiography/history  of World War Two.

Product Description:

"After the first forty days we were alone", writes Churchill. This edition is part two of Churchill's own abridgement of his original six-volume history of the Second World War."

Alone: May 1940-May 1941 - starts with the fall of France: May-June 1940-- with 350,000 British and French soldiers trapped near the French port city of Dunkirk, on the Channel coast near the Pas de Calais. As the Germans inexplicably pause a few miles away from the seemingly doomed Allied forces, the British execute Operation Dynamo, the quickly improvised and mounted evacuation of almost the entire British Expeditionary Force and a few contingents of French soldiers. Using ships and boats of all sizes and types (including civilian pleasure craft and motorboats), the Royal Navy pulls off this daring mission, known as the "Miracle at Dunkirk."

But even though the "little ships" have carried the soldiers to safety in Britain, most of the BEF's heavy weapons (tanks, armored cars, and artillery) has to be left behind, and until the British divisions can be refit and re-equipped, Great Britain -- with her determined and inspiring Priime Minister Winston Churchill -- faces Nazi Germany's dreaded Luftwaffe, U-boats, and even the threat of a sea-borne invasion alone for the next 12 months.

Alone: May 1940-May 1941 covers:

* The German pause at the gates of Dunkirk and the evacuation of the BEF

* The preparations on both sides for the expected German invasion of Britain, including a discussion on various Nazi attack plans, the frantic effort to beef up shore defenses all along the island's coastline, and the training of the Home Guard.

* The Battle of Britain, Germany's ill-fated and poorly executed attempt to "soften up" Britain prior to Operation Sea Lion, which was cancelled when the Luftwaffe failed to defeat the Royal Air Force and gain air supremacy over the British Isles.

* The Blitz, Hitler's attempt to bomb Britain into submission in a series of almost nightly air raids against London and other major cities; these went on for months and ceased only a few weeks before Hitler attacked Russia on June 22, 1941.
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