[Pdf Read] (The Hinge of Fate Second World War)
Ss to say Churchill doesn t ignore it but it s also hard to feel he gives it the correct weightAt least those are my thoughts when looking back at the book When I read it I was so swept away by the narrative that I couldn t help accepting Churchill s version of events at face value What a guy Perhaps this was the zenith of our civilization and we re now on the decline it s hard to accept that anyone around today is in the same league If ou haven t read the series put it on The Lego Architect your list without delay It won t disappoint So everyone out there pop uiz Who knew before now that just after the United States entered WWII our shipping was attacked constantly by the German Navy even just off shore of New Orleans and in the Chesapeake Bay and all around Florida We didn t have very effective anti submarine defense at the time and they picked off ships at will Even to the point of picking and choosing which ships to sink Two thirds of the ships that went down were tankers since they were the most important 70 ships were lost in 6 months Most of the AmericanHello I had never heard this before All I have heard is we were never attacked on American soil except for Pearl Harbor which almost doesn t count and 9 11 OK so this isn t soil but right offshore should count for something I have asked various people and no one had heard this before We tend to edit out losing things from our histories I supposeI knew that the desert war turned around at El Alamein but I never knew just how close to Cairo and all the important stuff in Egypt it was Had Rommel won there things would have turned out much different But he didn t and this was the battle Churchill calls the Hinge of Fate because it was the beginning of the Allied victories After this they didn t lose any major battles I haven t read all of this I have read all of Mr Churchill s narrative and a good many telegrams and reports and even Personal Minutes to various and sundry high ranking officials Our library has the full set of these memoirs and I have considered giving them a try for manyears but it was not until I saw one of the codgers in the movie The Bucket List reading just this the fourth volume that I finally got down to it The preface is intriguing I have called this volume The Hinge of Fate because in it we turn from almost uninterrupted disaster to almost unbroken success For the first six months of this story all went ill for the last six months everything went well p vi And then come Moral of the WorkIn War ResolutionIn Defeat DefianceIn Victory MagnanimityIn Peace Good WillTheme of the Volume How the power of the Grand Alliance become preponderant The Grand Alliance is that between the US particularly but also the Soviet Union This new ear of the Second World War 1942 opened upon us in an entirely different shape for Britain We were no longer alone At our side stood two mighty Allies Russia and the United States were though for different reasons irrevocably engaged to fight to the death in the closest concert with the British Empire This combination made final victory certain p 3 The mention of the British Empire is a recurring theme Soldiers from Australia New Zeeland South Africa and India form a large part of the Eighth Army in North Africa and there is considerable politics involved in keeping them up to the mark Early on Australia feels threatened by Japan reasonably so and wants their troops back Mr Churchill is pressed to explain why they can t have themThis whole North Africa campaign is something I have never really understood The French the Vichy French had large colonies in the west and Britain had control of Egypt and the Suez in the east Nazi Germany needed oil but surely the Middle East would have been a better target Another uestion which I found increasingly confusing was why the Germans did not invade Malta They had already taken Crete et Malta remained in British possession from which air strikes on shipping from Italy to North Africa could be launched and convoys and war ships could find a relatively well protected harbour That the British had great trouble supplying Malta caused Mr Churchill considerable deliberation Yet it was supplied and remained a threat Mr Churchill had a pet project called Jupiter an invasion of northern Norway The purpose was to capture a couple of airfields which could be used as bases for bombers and fighters protecting the convoys running from the US to Murmansk This sounds like a good idea to me but despite his efforts in pushing it forward the project never came off Mr Churchill s callousness is apparent in planning this during the invasionit seems unlikely that than one fifth or one sixth of the transports and covering craft would be sunk A military attack is not ruled out simply because a fifth of the soldiers my be shot on the way provided the others get there and do the job p 352The story though begins in the far east as the Japanese march through Malaya and then take Singapore the major British fortress It is not until later when he is informed of the fall of Tobruk that he truly expresses his feelings This was the fortress that had resisted a siege by Rommel s German and Italian forces for 241 days only a L Amour Fou de Dieu year earlier At the time of this disaster Mr Churchill was in the US with Franklin Roosevelt and Harry HopkinsIn a few minutes he general Ismay brought the following message which had just arrived from Admiral Harwood at Alexandria Tobruk has fallen and situation deteriorated so much that there is a possibility of heavy air attack on Alexandria in near future This was one of the heaviest blows I can recall during the war Not only were its military effects grievous but it had affected the reputation of the British armies At Singapore 85000 men had surrendered to inferior numbers of Japanese Now in Tobruk a garrison of 25000 actually 33000 seasoned soldiers had laid down their arms to perhaps one half of their number If this was typical of the morale of the Desert Army no measure could be put upon the disasters which impended in Northeast Africa I did not attempt to hide from the President the shock I had received It was a bitter moment Defeat is one thing disgrace is another Nothing could exceed the sympathy and chivalry of my two friends There were no reproaches not an unkind word was spoken What can we do to help said Roosevelt p 382 3 The answer of course was Give us as many Sherman tanks asou can spare and ship them to the Middle East as uickly as possible Well we know how it went but considerable of the charm of this book is that at the time no one knew After the Japanese had also taken Burma Mr Churchill feared for both India and Ceylon He also feared that the Axis would sweep on through Egypt as he expressed in a message to General Auchinleck on 25 June 42 I hope the crisis will lead to all uniformed personnel in the Delta and all available loyal man power being raised to the highest fighting condition You have over seven hundred thousand men on De brevitate vitae your ration strength in the Middle East Every fit male should be made to fight and die for victory There is no reason why units defending the Mersa Matruh position should not be reinforced by several thousands of officers and administrative personnel ordered to swell the battalions or working parties You are in the same kind of situation as we should be if England were invaded and the same intense drastic spirit should reign p 389 After being driven from Mersa Matruh there is a change of command and on 30 June 42 Prime Minister to Minister of Stateou should insist upon the mobilisation for battle of all the rearward services Everybody in uniform must fight exactly like they would if Kent or Sussex were invaded Tank hunting parties with sticky bombs and bombards defence to the death of every fortified area or strong building making every post a winning post and every ditch a last ditch This is the spirit Signaler un problème you have got to inculcate No general evacuation no playing for safety Egypt must be held at all costs p 425 6 The man does have a way with words Every post a winning post and every ditch a last ditch Meanwhile over in Russia the Soviet resistance was stiffening Mr Churchill is clearly ambivalent here I feel we at least deserve credit for our patience in the face of ceaseless affront from a Government which had been hoping to work with Hitler until it was assaulted and almost destroyed by him This is however the point at which to tell all too briefly the tale of the magnificent struggle and decisive victory of the Russian Armies p 582Mr Churchill regrets freuently that the western allies have not been able to relieve the pressure of the Axis armies on the Soviet Union by an invasion of France in 1942 or even in 1943 Not even obliuely does he admit that Commies and Nazis killing each other could be a good thing Prime Minister to General Ismay for COS Chiefs of Staff Committee 4 Mar 43I feel so very conscious of the poor contribution the British and American Armies are making in only engaging perhaps a dozen German divisions during the greater part of thisear while Stalin is facing 185 that I should not be prepared myself to court the certain rebuff which would attend a reuest for information as to his plans p 935 certain rebuff which would attend a reuest for information as to his plans p 935 the struggle there is still class consciousness as revealed in a message from General Alexander to Prime Minister and CIGS Chief of the Imperial General Staff 1 Nov 42 during the battle of Alamein Best estimate of casualties up to 6 AM October 31 killed wounded and missing officers 695 other ranks 9435 p 597That this was a an all out struggle is made evident in for example the Prime Minister s Personal Minutes Prime Minister to Secretary of State for War CIGS and Minister of Production 8 May 423 1700000 is the figure given for men in the Home Guard My latest figure is 1450000 of which only 840000 have rifles Of course those with rifles are relieved by those without and they all ought to be trained but surely the emphasis should be on getting a number trained in shooting eual to the rifles issued Let me know what is the plan about this 4 I still think that in view of the immense uantities of30 ammunition now being produced in America 319000000 rounds in March for instance we ought to try to get another 100000000 over to improve holdings of the Home Guard and for practice I should be willing to make an effort for this p 859 These Personal Minutes are often interesting as Mr Churchill gets after his various Ministers Secretary s Sea Lords and Generals As for example Prime Minister to Minister of Aircraft Production 13 May 42 Your latest returns shows that Un monstre dans les céréales you have 1797 aircraft in preparation These are presumably in addition to the 649 ready and ready within four days The shortage of aircraft at the present moment is acute Now is the time forou to bring forward this reserve of 1797 which are presumably defective in this or that spare part Lord Beaverbrook in 1940 gained great advantages for us by a searching analysis and scrutiny of the machines in the Air Supply Units What we want now is aircraft in the front line Get at it and bite at it p 860 He can also offer praise Prime Minister to Minister of Labour 24 Sept 42 I have read with great interest Nam your note describing what has been achieved in the man power field during theear ended last June I see that Painting Landscapes from Your Imagination you drafted nearly a million men and women into the Services thereby fulfilling the great bulk of their reuirements and at the same time added 80000 to the labour force on munitions I congratulateou on this great performance p 901 The view is of course von oben as for example in the Battle of the Atlantic when he reports gross tons of shipping lost and also the number of ships lost but nothing about the number of lives lost Still I found this interesting especially when the narrator is as dedicated and involved as Mr Churchill From worrying and writing to those in charge about the distribution of flowers to the larger cities providing a ration of sugar for bee keepers reviewing a typical standard infantry battalion or ordering increased air attacks on transport convoys or defending himself in Parliament or planning an invasion of West Africa or Sicily or sweetening the Free French and the Russians and the Americans while travelling to Africa and America no job is too large or too small This is the fourth volume in Winston Churchill s monumental work on the Second World War This is not history of a grand scope but rather Churchill s personal memoir of the war Of course being a key player on the allied side Churchill brings a wealth of information and insight to the decision making process We Americans are so inculcated with the American roles and perspectives of the war that Churchill s uintessential British version of events is a refreshing view The book is composed of two interwoven parts His personal recollections and opinions and verbatim copies of telegrams letters and radio transmissions Source material not in the primary text is included in appendices taking up one third of the book Kindle versionAnother major allure of this book is the wonderful command of the language which the author has demonstrated throughout his lifetime I highly recommend the four volume History of the English Speaking People for *Example Churchill Was Not *Churchill was not a great public speaker at heart he is a reporter In fact Winston Churchill was the first major British politician to have made his living as a reporter and writer Use a dictionary or an electronic reader with a built in dictionary some of his language is a bit archaicOne downside has apparently scanned the physical volume to make its Kindle edition and sometimes errors occurred Shame on for not doing a better job with the editingWell for me its off to the next volume Closing the Ring. Lly turned for Britain and its allies from constant defeat to almost unbroken successes Japan's successful assault on the Pacific Britain's attempts to aid a beleaguered Russia and the defeat of Rommel at the Battle of Alame. ,
Winston S. Churchill Ü 8 Free read,
Ysis Winston Churchill was remarkable as much as for any other reason for the sheer volume of words he produced In a long life during which he was often preoccupied by both family matters he had four children and matters of state he nevertheless found the time to compose an inordinate number of books I say compose because he perfected a system during the first war which revealed its efficacy than ever in the second of working through secretaries There are many odd anecdotes told about Churchill not the least of which is that his secretaries sometimes working in rotation throughout much of the night were obliged to attend to him and take down what he said even in the bath This way of getting the material down in print proved to be very effective as the tens of thousands of published pages of his work amply demonstratesHis long history of the Second World War continues with The Hinge of Fate Although he was personally assured that the American entry into the war meant the ultimate defeat of Germany he still had to see to the day to day running of the war machine and counter the perverse effects of both German victories and British pessimism Now began as well the long battle with Stalin about opening up a second front in France to take some of the heat off the Russian armies in the East In fact his relationship with the Russian leader is one of the most interesting sources of anecdotal references throughout this seriesThis is history being well told by a man who was while perhaps not a trained historian as such so steeped in the history of his family and his country that he an utterly uniue point of view The fact that he was also a central figure in the war itself means that we have if ou like a one in a million chance victory on our hands as though we had just won a lottery of sorts by being able to read him I ought to have known My advisers ought to have known and I ought to have been told and I ought to have asked Winston Churchill s WWII series has turned out to be intriguing reading albeit very long reading This volume is the first one in the series where relief not much but relief nevertheless starts to show After the first three volumes focused on one disaster after another Churchill leads the reader to what he feels is the turning point of the war The British people can face peril or misfortune with fortitude and buoyancy but they bitterly resent being deceived or finding that those responsible for their affairs are themselves dwelling in a fool s paradiseThe fall of Singapore deeply hurt Churchill who tried to fathom why 80000 Commonwealth troops could simply surrender He also had to deal with the sullen sinister Bolshevik State of Stalin s Soviet Union which had originally partnered with Hitler with the objective of gleefully dividing the British Empire only to run afoul of Hitler and Prussian pride Then there were the Yanks Would they eventually join the fight And if they did would that single step portend their eventual rise to their own empire I was attracted by the goldfish Churchill on MoscowThis is not a book for those simply wanting a uick review of World War II This is Churchill This is 1000 pages of memos personal thoughts letters telegrams military notes and a wonderful appendix filled with enough data to satisfy any modern day chart fanatic This is why it takes a long time to complete as ou think Chasing McCree Chasing McCree you re reading a straightforward account only to discover that Mr Churchill wantsou to really 1942 43 Britain having survived Dunkirk and the Battle of Britain to hold off invasion is fighting back and forth across North Africa and at sea against air and U boat attack with large losses Russia has joined the war and been driven back to Moscow and the Caucuses The US has joined after Pearl harbour but Japan is sweeping through the Far East conuering Singapore Burma and threatening Australia and India This book charts the turn of fate as the Allies finally conuer Rommel in Africa the Russians win at Stalingrad and the US destroy Japanese carriers at Midway and start the fight back in the Pacific Fascinating first hand letters and telegrams between Churchill Roosevelt Stalin and the Generals and Politicians of the day The Hinge of Fate is the fourth installment of Winston Churchill s World War Two volumes His theme for this book is described as How the power of the Grand Alliance became preponderant Accordingly he spends the book s 800 plus pages detailing how the tide turned particularly against Germany and the Axis powers during 1943The first two hundred pages deal largely with the fight against Japan Fear over losing Singapore and Australia to the Japanese invaders looms large in Churchill s mind and the loss of the former is a cause of particular anxiety to him Australia would remain safe due partly to the defeat of the Japanes navy in the Coral SeaSubseuent to Singapore s fall President Roosevelt writes to the Prime MinisterI realize how the fall of Singapore has affected ou and the British people It gives the well known back seat driver a field day but no matter how serious our setbacks have been and I do not for a moment underrate them we must constantly look forward to the next moves that need to be made to hit the enemy This February 1942 letter underscored the strength of the growing bond between the US and UK but it also alluded to political troubles at home for Churchill It is incredible to see read about just how much domestic criticism Churchill s government was willing to put up with in such a time of crisis A Vote of Confidence on his leadership was called by the opposition in the House of Commons *in early 1942 at a time when the war in Pacific and in the Middle East was not faring well *early 1942 at a time when the war in Pacific and in the Middle East was not faring well resulted in a two hours long speech to that chamber by a Prime Minister worried about his government being toppled During the course of his speech Churchill would inform the members that any one of them will be free to say anything he think sift about or against the Administration or against the composition of personalities of the Government to his heart s content subject only to the reservation which the House is always so careful to observe about military secrets He would go on to say that he owes it to the House of Commons to explain to the them what has led me to ask for their exceptional support at this time Churchill avoided a vote of no confidence allowing a stronger hand to be exercised in execution of his wartime responsibilities He would also survive a vote of censure later on in 1942 when the situation in North Africa appeared not to be going Britain s wayEnsuring India does not fall to Japan is of critical importance to Churchill as well Interestingly he expresses distaste for Gandhi and his peace movement citing its potential success as a guarantee that the country would fall to the invaders Later in the book Gandhi is temporarily jailed over British concern that he would frustrate their desire to keep India on a war footing It is from his confinement that the world renown promoter of peace would go on a hunger strikeAfter the first few hundred pages the book transitions to the fight against the Axis Powers The Middle Eastern theater becomes the area of focus and Churchill utilizes ample detail to lay out fights in this region The struggle against Erwin Rommel and the Africa Corps take up numerous pages and Generals Bernard Montgomery and Claude Auchinlek prove invaluable to Churchill during the campaign to gain a foothold in the Middle East The Eighth Army and its relentless battling against German Panzer divisions make for suspenseful reading The surrender of the Tobruk fortress to Rommel by General Hendrik Klopper marked a low point in the campaign and it was not until the fighting at the Alamein position that the tide began to turn against Rommel The help of New Zealand and Australian divisions in the victory there showed just how much Great Britain s empire contributed in manpower during the war The failure of Rommel to take Egypt or to successfully follow up on victories at Tobruk doomed Axis efforts to maintain a base of operations in the desertThe book then turns to north and western Africa after things settle down in the desert Operation Torch is the new objective for the Allies and by this juncture the American military is finally ready to spearhead a major operation against the Germans and Italians General Dwight Eisenhower plays a key role for the first time in this operation and Churchill s admiration for the American general is apparent While the motivations for the invasion of north and West Africa is apparent the political gamesmanship with the French leaders in exile in north Africa makes for confusing reading Trying to discern if leaders like Philippe Petain and Francois Darlan would activelypassive oppose or activelypassively support the American led landing in north Africa made for guesswork among the American and British military staff Britain distrust of Darlan whom they viewed with disdain did not eliminate the necessity of working to prevent him from stirring up opposition among the locals against the attempt to gain an Allied stronghold in the TunisiaAlgiers areaCharles de Gaulle s stance as part hero part enigma also makes the relationship between the Anglo American partners and France complicated Franklin Roosevelt is shown to have particular difficulties accepting de Gaulle as a genuine partner in the fight against Hitlerism The concern that a cabal of Frenchmen would use the crisis and disorder precipitated by the German invasion for their own nefarious purposes was always at the back of American and British minds The Americans end up being appointed to take the lead in the initial landings in Operation Torch This is done to prevent a potential backlash if Royal Navy ships and British troops are seen as spearheading the operation in the opinion of the local French population The success in establishing Allied control over north and west Africa causes The Hinge of Fate to end on a very encouraging note for the cause of worldwide freedom The finishing off of Axis control in northeastern Africa allows full Allied control of the northern portion of that continent eliminating Italian and German control of a crucial region Once in command in this area the debate over what to do next takes center stage A cross English Channel invasion of German positions in France held appeal for Allied some war planners Still others felt a bold campaign against southern Italy and a working up into the interior of Axis controlled Europe undertaken most likely after surrounding areas like Sicily were subdued from there was a better bolder next move Men like Generals George Marshall and Eisenhower take on an increasingly pivotal role in the direction of the war as the Hinge of Fate advances toward its ending and their advice is taken seriously by Churchill and the Combined Chiefs of Staff The link between America and England becomes so strong that the Prime Minister even mentions the idea of a postwar joint citizenship between the two nations He also expounds on his desire for a postwar United Nations envisioning a sort of Security Council as well as regional governmental bodies and international troops which would underpin a peaceful world orderAgainst the backdrop of war planning looms the fighting on the Russian front where many German divisions are held up in brutal combat Stalin s longing for the Allies to open up a major second front in Europe are a source of freuent frustration as he hopes this would force Hitler to pull ground and air forces from the fight in Russia to stave off an invasion of the Reich from the west The contribution made by the expelling of the German invasion from Russia is impossible to miss the amount of German machinery and troops absorbed by that theater left the Allies in the west with a much weaker enemy to do battle againstThe Allies ultimately decide a cross Channel invasion must be put off for another ear until 1944 opting instead to invade through the Mediterranean as a followup to victories in northern Africa This is where the book leaves off Throughout its entirety The Hinge of Fate is a comprehensive thorough account of the second World War through the firsthand accounts of Britain s Prime Minister This spectacular work is an important contribution to the world s collective understanding of the key players battles and forces which shaped the battle to save mankind from fascism Andrew Canfield Denver Colorado When Keto Diet for Beginners: The Keto Diet Cookbook with Quick and Healthy Recipes incl. 30 Days Weight Loss Plan you ve done something almost supernaturally brilliant and far sighted and it works better thanou could have dared hope ou really want to get the credit Even Churchill is not immune Back in 1940 when Britain was under siege and things looked almost desperate under siege and things looked almost desperate made a terrific strategic decision not to go all out on defence but move tanks so as to be able to hold Egypt That might give long term chances of a counter attack Miraculously it worked We won the Battle of Britain the USSR and the US entered the war on our side and Egypt held Now a counter attack in North Africa was indeed possible It was still close but Montgomery defeated Rommel at the Second Battle of El Alamein and then the Allied forces had the initiative there They advanced rapidly towards Tunis and were suddenly threatening to cross the Mediterranean towards Sicily Italy and the soft underbelly of Europe Churchill s 1940 decision had turned out to be an incredible success and he can t resist the temptation to present this as the turning point of the war Indeed up to now almost everything had gone terribly and afterwards almost everything went well but the Battle of Stalingrad was going on or less at the same time El Alamein 23 October 5 November 1942 Stalingrad 23 August 1942 2 February 1943 Needle. Vement it is universally acknowledged as a magnificent reconstruction and is an enduring compelling work that led to his being awarded the Nobel Prize for literature The Hinge of Fate describes how the tide of the war gradua. The time frame of this book covers approximately one and a half ears from late 1941 until May 1943 during which a cascading series of events some of them catastrophic tried the resolve of the British peoples and their Prime Minister There were several bright spots early on including the recent thumping that the British Commonwealth armies had given to German General Rommel in the North African desert and the long hoped for entry of the United States into the war This latter development certainly gave Winston Churchill and the British military leaders cause for rejoicing because Great Britain would no longer be standing alone against the Germans who had spent the last two ears gobbling up most of Europe The reason for the United States sudden abandonment of its former neutrality however brought a whole new set of huge problems The US was attacked by Japan not Germany and Churchill would spend a good part of the time covered in this volume using his utmost diplomatic persuasion skills trying to keep American military planners focused on looking at Europe as the main theater of war This was no small matter since many in the American government were at odds over the assigning of precedence America s highest ranking military leaders Admiral EJ King Chief of Naval Operations and General George Marshall US Army Chief of Staff were evenly divided in this matter In this effort Churchill cultivated and received the friendship of his increasingly good friend and ally Franklin Roosevelt who sided with him on this issueNot that anyone could ignore what was going on in the Pacific The British were certainly relieved when Hitler declared war on the US in the wake of Pearl Harbor forcing attention toward the European theater of war but this also meant that Great Britain would now be fighting Japan The conseuences of this widening of the war were felt in the pressure exerted in the Pacific by a rampaging Japanese military which very shortly began the action which would cause huge losses to America in the Philippines and would take over other Allied bases in the Pacific By March of 1942 the Japanese would conuer the Dutch East Indies taking many allied soldiers prisoner Prior to that the Japanese had steamrolled down the Malayan Peninsula and had conuered the British island fortress of Singapore They also overran Siam and invaded Burma capturing RangoonThe beauty of Churchill s books comes from the combination of his command of English in writing historical narrative and his liberal insertions of the voluminous correspondence carried out between himself and all manner of government agencies and foreign allies The unfolding of the Singapore disaster from the government s frantic steps to reinforce its defense at all cost to the realization that nothing could be done to prevent the loss of the island was both fascinating and sickening to read about This calamity was followed by the news that General Rommel had counterattacked in the African desert Tobruk fell back into German hands and Britain faced a grave situation despite earlier overconfident assurances Churchill had received from his commanding general thereThere is no doubt that in any other circumstances heads should have rolled on the discovery that one of Britain s most valuable bases was lost in good measure because it was set up to be practically impregnable to a sea attack but all of its defenses folded because no one thought far enough ahead to plan for a land ward threat Most of the blame for this fell upon Churchill who was not in the government when the planning for Singapore s defense happened but he had to face a Motion of Censure in Parliament His political and oratorical skills met the challenge and the result was a renewed vote of confidence in the National Government which he headedFighting a two ocean war was very difficult for the Allies Churchill s job was not made easier by the fact that the Australian Prime Minister fearing a Japanese invasion made demands for the return of Australia s best army divisions which were sorely needed in North Africa They were especially panicked after the loss of Singapore an installation which they believed to be critical to the defense of their island and about the Japanese presence in New Guinea and the Solomon Islands There was no way that England could provide any significant defense to Australia The United States solved this predicament by making Australia an important base for garrisoning growing numbers of forces that would be used in numerous Pacific island campaigns Campaigns in Guadalcanal and New Guinea as well as significant American sea victories at the Coral Sea and Midway would eventually but slowly remove the immediate Japanese threat to Australia One of the greatest challenges *TO THE ALLIES AT THIS TIME *the Allies at this time the danger of getting supplies shipped across the Atlantic Ocean Naval convoys were coming under increasingly deadly German attack from submarines and from the air The Battle of the Atlantic was one of the most fearful campaigns of the war because Britain could simply not survive without the food and material shipped from America and Russia now an Allied power sorely needed everything that could be sent there The problem was exacerbated by the lack of forward planning by American Naval authorities causing severe shortages of escort vessels to guard the convoys Churchill provides data showing the loss of three and a uarter millions of tons of British and other allied shipping lost between December 1941 and August 1942 and another almost three and three uarter million tons sent to the bottom of the ocean between August 1942 and late May 1943 representing huge loss of lives as well as ships and their cargoesAll of these losses and military reversals made it difficult to envision a pro active strike against Germany America would be able to provide the human and manufacturing resources needed to make this happen but the country would take time to overcome ears of pre war isolationist military neglect Churchill was especially feeling the sting of not so subtle prodding from Joseph Stalin whose country had felt severe punishment from German invasion Churchill had made it a point to send as much assistance to Russia as possible from the beginning but Stalin criticized him for having to suspend arctic ship convoys due to high losses from German submarine wolf packs and for not opening a second front against Hitler in western Europe Churchill and President Franklin Roosevelt and their top military staffs would work very hard to come to some kind of consensus on when that European invasion would begin As 1942 began it became very apparent that no kind of invasion could possibly be mounted in 1942 much to Stalin s chagrin The planners decided that an all out attempt should be made to send an invasion force to France to begin pushing the German forces back into Germany and ultimately defeat in 1943 The 1942 campaign code named Sledgehammer formerly named Bolero and aimed at an attack on Brest or Cherbourg morphed into Roundup for the liberation of France based on the capture of Antwerp in 1943 Much attention is mentioned in the book about planning for numerous Anglo British military campaigns There is an almost bewildering array of code names some of which evolved into other names Thus the projected 1943 Roundup eventually became the 1944 Overlord invasion Likewise the late 1942 Gymnast invasion of French North Africa Morocco Algeria and Tunisia begat Torch Before Torch happened the British forces under General HR Alexander the new Commander in Chief of the North African Theater of Operations and his deputy General BL Montgomery Commanding the British 8th Army bolstered Allied morale when they won back Tobruk and then defeated Rommel at Alamein November 1942 This is where Churchill marked the turning of the Hinge of Fate when he declared that the British never had a victory before Alamein after Alamein they never had a defeat p 1065 of 1782 If Alamein was the beginning of the end for the Germans in North Africa it would need to be followed by months of hard slogging in the Western deserts One of the compelling reasons for Torch was that it would give the Americans a chance to finally get a sizable force in battle against the Germans since it was becoming obvious as mentioned above that an American British invasion of France would not be feasible for some time This is one reason why Churchill deferred to the naming of an American general Dwight Eisenhower as the operation s supreme commander Churchill s description of this operation is as always detailed and orderly The Allies would not become as General Alexander wired to Churchill masters of the North African shores pp 1375 1376 of 1782 until May 13 1943 This news followed the final encirclement and defeat of the Germans at Tunis which compared according to Churchill to the Russian victory at Stalingrad As Churchill sums up the situation at the middle of 1943 then there was light at the end of the tunnel Over two ears of destruction involving loss of countless numbers of civilians and military people would have to transpire until this war ended Much friendly collaboration would have to transpire among the Allies to make victory happen and Churchill would be the most energetic leader in traveling whenever needed to consult on important matters Already within the pages of this book he had made three trips to Washington DC to meet with Roosevelt had broken the ice with Stalin with a trip to Moscow and had participated in the first Big Three conference with the other two leaders at Casablanca in January 1943 This at a time when long range air travel was both arduous and highly risky even for a head of stateHowever if it was not immediately apparent at this time Italy was almost out of the war as a military power while Hitler s invasion of Russia was coming back to bite his ass leaving Germany as an isolated combatant in Europe and the Japanese juggernaut had peaked If Alamein was Britain s hinge of fate June 1943 was the turning point for the Allied cause This fourth volume takes us from January 1942 to May 1943 During this period as the title indicates the fulcrum of the war shifted from one of constant defeats to one of victory The tide had changed but as Churchill continued to warn the road to triumph was still to be long costly and arduousPage 493 my book June 1942 We had survived the collapse of France and the attack on Britain We had not been invaded We still held Egypt We were alive and at bay but that was all On the other hand what a cataract of disasters had fallen upon us The fiasco of Dakar the loss of all our Desert conuests from the Italians the tragedy of Greece the loss of Crete the unrelieved reverses of the Japanese war the loss of Hong Kong the catastrophe of Singapore the Japanese conuest of Burma Auchinleck s defeat in the Desert the surrender of Tobruk the failure as it was judged at Dieppe all these galling links in a chain of misfortune and frustration to which no parallel could be found IN OUR HISTORYCHURCHILL WAS MUCH ON our historyChurchill was much on road visiting Washington going to Casablanca and from there to Cairo and a long journey to Moscow with a stopover in Teheran to visit Stalin In many ways this was Churchill s top ascendancy in the war he was the elder statesman and leader who had been the very first to join the battle against Hitler But he must have felt his voice and status beginning to diminish From henceforth he would be listened to less and his allies would assert their dominance Stalin s armies were killing and engaging far #GERMANS THAN THE BRITISH US PRODUCTION #than the British US production just beginning to have a growing role and their navy and air force was starting the onslaught in the Pacific where the British had been so humiliated particularly at Singapore Britain s role was recedingThere were a few tiresome chapters about India of which I had little interest Britain and Churchill s attempts at empire preservation hold little appeal to me Also there were too many military details on TobrukBut Churchill s accounts of personal interactions with Roosevelt Stalin de Gaulle and the Darlan episode in Algeria were elouently depictedPage 611 on de Gaulle I knew he was no friend of England But I always recognised in him the spirit and conception which across the pages of history the word France would ever proclaim I understood and admired while I resented his arrogant demeanour Here he was a refugee an exile from his country under sentence of death in a position entirely dependent upon the goodwill of the British Government and also now of the United States The Germans had conuered his country He had no real foothold anywhere Never mind he defied all Always even when he was behaving worst he seemed to express the personality of France a great nation with all its pride authority and ambitionAnd once the drilling down of Churchill to minute details continues to startle and amaze me here is one letter Page 833 Prime Minister to Lord President 6 Mar 43Transport of FlowersI am distressed that our Committee should not have seen their way to agree to any relaxation of the ban on the transport of flowers by train I recognize that in present circumstances the provision of special trains for flowers cannot be justified but surely some half way house can be found between the provision of special facilities and the complete abolition of the trafficI should be glad if our Committee would give immediate consideration to an arrangement whereby such transport capacity as can properly be made available for flowers without damage to essential war purposescan be fairly distributed between the growersAnd one of my favourite uotes of Churchill from a letterPage 808 The maxim Nothing avails but perfection may be spelt shorter Paral. Winston Churchill's six volume history of the cataclysm that swept the world remains the definitive history of the Second World War Lucid dramatic remarkable both for its breadth and sweep and for its sense of personal invol.