With Our Backs to Berlin

With Our Backs to Berlin
With Our Backs to Berlin by Tony Le Tissier
2013 | EPUB + MOBI | 8.9/4.0MB

In the final months of the Second World War in 1945, the German Army was in full retreat on both its Western and Eastern Fronts. British and American troops were poised to cross the River Rhine in the west, while in the East the vast Soviet war machine was steam-rolling the soldiers of the Third Reich back towards the capital, Berlin. Even in retreat, the German Army was still a force to be reckoned with and vigorously defended every last bridge, castle, town and village against the massive Russian onslaught.

Tony Le Tissier has interviewed a wide range of former German Army and SS soldiers to provide ten vivid first-hand accounts of the fighting retreat that, for one soldier, ended in Hitler's Chancellery building in the ruins of Berlin in April 1945. The dramatic descriptions of combat are contrasted with insights into the human dimensions of these desperate battles, reminding the reader that many of the German soldiers whose stories we read shared similar values to the average British 'Tommy' or the American GI and were not all crazed Nazis.

Illustrated with photographs of the main characters and specially commissioned maps identifying the location and course of the battles, With Our Backs to Berlin is a fascinating read for anyone who is interested in the final days of the Second World War.

Hitler's Beneficiaries

Hitler's Beneficiaries
Hitler's Beneficiaries: Plunder, Racial War, and the Nazi Welfare State by Gtz Aly
2008 | EPUB + MOBI | 1.73/1.59MB

A stunning account of the economic workings of the Third Reich--and the reasons ordinary Germans supported the Nazi state

In this groundbreaking book, historian Gtz Aly addresses one of modern history's greatest conundrums: How did Hitler win the allegiance of ordinary Germans? The answer is as shocking as it is persuasive: by engaging in a campaign of theft on an almost unimaginable scale--and by channeling the proceeds into generous social programs--Hitler literally "bought" his people's consent.

Drawing on secret files and financial records, Aly shows that while Jews and citizens of occupied lands suffered crippling taxation, mass looting, enslavement, and destruction, most Germans enjoyed an improved standard of living. Buoyed by millions of packages soldiers sent from the front, Germans also benefited from the systematic plunder of Jewish possessions. Any qualms were swept away by waves of tax breaks and government handouts.

Hitler's Beneficiaries has been hailed as "startling" by Richard Evans, and as "fascinating and important" by Christopher Browning. Above all, as Omer Bartov testifies, this remarkable book "irreversibly transforms our understanding of the Third Reich."

You Are Not Forgotten

You Are Not Forgotten
You Are Not Forgotten: The Story of a Lost World War II Pilot and a Twenty-First-Century Soldier's Mission to Bring Him Home by Bryan Bender
2013 | EPUB | 8.21Mb

An inspiring and epic tale of loss and redemption about two American servicemen: a Marine Corps pilot who was shot down in WWII and the modern-day soldier determined to bring home his remains six decades later.

Major George Eyster V comes from a long line of military officers, dating back to the Revolutionary War. Army service was George's family legacy, but his tour of duty in Iraq left him disillusioned and questioning. He was making plans to end his army career but was offered a posting to J-PAC, an elite division armed with the latest detection and forensic technology. J-PAC's sole mission is to fulfill a solemn promise at the heart of the military code: bring all fallen soldiers home to the country for which they gave their lives.

In 1944 Captain Ryan McCown, a dashing young Marine aviator assigned to the USS Nassau, was shot down over the jungles of Papua, New Guinea. McCown's diaries and letters home to his family and fiancee provide a moving, powerful portrait of the fears and costs of a very different war and underscore the pathos of the ultimate cost of duty.

Eyster's mission with J-PAC eventually took him and his team deep into the sweltering interior of New Guinea in search of McCown's remains. It would be a fraught mission, complete with tropical diseases and black magic, at the end of which Eyster would not only repatriate a fallen veteran and fulfill a promise to deliver him to his loved ones but would also uncover something lost in himself-a sense of purpose in a promise between soldiers that is still worth fighting for.

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