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Darkest Hour: The True Story of Lark Force at Rabaul
Wednesday, 30 January 2008 15:47


Author: Bruce Gamble
Publisher: Zenith Press

From Baird Maritime:

A rather basic and simplistic book that is nevertheless important. It basically catalogues the doomed force of 1,400 Australian soldiers who were rapidly overrun by a real force of some 20,000 Japanese marines at Rabaul in what is now Papua-New Guinea.

Worse was to come, hundreds of the survivors of the Battle were executed soon after. Many others died of malaria and other tropical diseases. The invasion to secure Rabaul took place early on January 23, 1942. It was complete by lunchtime.

Five months later some 850 prisoners of war together with 200 civilian prisoners from Rabaul were being transported to Hainan Island, South China. Their ship was sunk inadvertently by the US submarine USS ‘Sturgeon’. The result was that 1,050 more Australians were killed.

The book describes how and why it all happened.

Ordering Information:

Zenith Press
St Paul, USA.
Web: mbipublishing.com
 
Capricorn Link
Windsor, Australia
Web: www.capricornlink.com.au

 


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Fighting the War on Terror: A Counterinsurgency Strategy
Wednesday, 30 January 2008 15:43


Author: James S. Corum
Publisher: Zenith Press

From Baird Maritime:

Unimpressed, as many of us are, at the witch hunting tendencies of the Bush/Cheney administration, you have to be impressed still with the functioning of the American democracy. There are few other countries where leading military academics would be permitted to make such scathing and hard hitting criticisms of their government as Professor Corum has done in his book.

This excellent book concentrates, of course, on the current long running Iraq War. In it he explains the causes of America’s practically endless chain of disasters. He also suggests practical, sensible ways of overcoming them.

Insurgencies have been with us a long time as the author explains. They are likely to become even more common. They are not easily overcome. However, as he explains very carefully, it is far better to learn from past successes and failures.

Ordering Information:

Zenith Press
St Paul, USA
Web: www.zenithpress.com
 
Capricorn Link
Windsor, Australia
Web: www.capricornlink.com.au


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Kriegsmarine U-boats 1939-1945 (2)
Wednesday, 30 January 2008 15:40


Author: Gordon Williamson
Illustrated by Ian Palmer
Publisher: Osprey Publishing

From Baird Maritime:

Following its successes in the first half of World War I, the German Navy relied extensively on submarines in its buildup to World War II some twenty years later.

Some hundreds of submarines were built for the Kriegsmarine. All types are very well described here.

Again, as in World War I, the U-boat force enjoyed many successes in the early part of the War. However, as the Allied navies improved their techniques with convoys, ASDIC, sonar, depth charges and aircraft, the attrition rate among submariners became horrifying.

The Kriegsmarine continued to experiment with large, small and medium sized submarines but none could survive the onslaught from the revitalised Allied navies.

Ordering Information:

Osprey Publishing
Oxford, UK
Web: www.ospreypublishing.com
 
Capricorn Link
Windsor, Australia
Web: www.capricornlink.com.au

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Naval Battles of the First World War
Wednesday, 30 January 2008 15:39


Author: Geoffrey Bennett
Publisher: Pen and Sword Books

From Baird Maritime:

This substantial paperback history provides a succinct overview of all the main naval battles of World War I in which British Commonwealth navies were involved.

Very well researched and exceptionally well illustrated, it is a small classic of naval history. Originally published in 1968, it has been effectively revived as a Pen and Sword Military Classic.

A valuable book that cried out to be re-released.

Ordering Information:

Pen and Sword Books
Barnsley, UK
Web: www.pen-and-sword.co.uk

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U-Boats of the Kaiser’s Navy
Wednesday, 30 January 2008 15:31


Author: Gordon Williamson
Illustrated by Ian Palmer
Publisher: Osprey Publishing

From Baird Maritime:
This little book describes the development of the German submarine arm of the First World War from its beginnings in the 1850s.

From around 1906 Kaiser Wilhelm began flexing his muscles and provoking his British cousins. At this time submarines began to be seen as acceptable and effective weapons. With the rapid developments of the diesel engine their development surged.

The early boats were small and conditions inside them primitive, to put it mildly.
Early in the war they started to be enlarged and their performances improved dramatically. A total of 355 were built from 1914-1918.

Early successes against British warships such as the sinking of three cruisers in a few minutes by ‘U9’ led to a rapid re-appraisal of the value of submarines. However, just as they began to be established, the British discovered effective ways of defeating them using convoys, mines and aircraft. By early 1918 it was all over, U Boat production could not match their losses.

Ordering Information:

Osprey Publishing
Oxford, UK
Web: www.ospreypublishing.com
 
Capricorn Link
Windsor, Australia
Web: www.capricornlink.com.au

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