Harman, Nicholas.


1st ed., 1980. 271 pp., photo-plates + maps. D.j., 24 x 16cm. Fading to spine of d.j., o/w Nr.FINE. The operation at Dunkirk saved 340,000 Allied soldiers from death or capture, and preserved the nucleus of the British Army for future campaigns. While most of the soldiers displayed fortitude, there was deception and trickery, conflict and contradictory orders at the political and high command level which contributed to a myth surrounding Dunkirk. It can be argued that in war it is sometimes necessary to deceive allies as well as enemies, but how necessary and how moral was the myth surrounding Dunkirk ? The author scrutinizes the Dunkirk affair at all levels, seeing it through the eyes of Cabinet ministers and military commanders ; from the naval angle and from the viewpoint of those who manned the ‘little ships’ ; and he researched many revealing anecdotes about the confused, exhausted soldiers who made the long retreat to the port and who, arriving in Britain, were welcomed like conquerors.

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