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Defending the Rock

Defending the Rock

Last 1 in stock
ISBN
9780571307708
Published
07/09/2017
9780571307708
Format
Hardback
Price
£20.00
Paperback
672

About the Book

Two months before he shot himself, Adolf Hitler saw where it had all gone wrong. By failing to seize Gibraltar in the summer of 1940, he lost the war.
The Rock of Gibraltar, a pillar of British sea-power since 1704, looked formidable but was extraordinarily vulnerable. Though menaced on all sides by Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, Vichy France and Francoist Spain, every day Gibraltar had to let thousands of people cross its frontier to work. Among them came spies and saboteurs, eager to blow up its 25 miles of secret tunnels. In 1942, Gibraltar became US General Eisenhower’s HQ for the invasion of North Africa, the campaign that led to Allied victory in the Mediterranean.
Nicholas Rankin’s revelatory new book, whose cast of characters includes Haile Selassie, Anthony Burgess and General Sikorski, sets Gibraltar in the wider context of the struggle against fascism, from Abyssinia through the Spanish Civil War. It also chronicles the end of empire and the rise to independence of the Gibraltarian people.

Two months before he shot himself, Adolf Hitler saw where it had all gone wrong. By failing to seize Gibraltar in the summer of 1940, he lost the war. The Rock of Gibraltar, a pillar of British sea-power since 1704, looked formidable but was extraordinarily vulnerable. Though menaced on all sides by Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, Vichy France and Francoist Spain, every day Gibraltar had to let thousands of people cross its frontier to work. Among them came spies and saboteurs, eager to blow up its 25 miles of secret tunnels. In 1942, Gibraltar became US General Eisenhower’s HQ for the invasion of North Africa, the campaign that led to Allied victory in the Mediterranean. Nicholas Rankin’s revelatory new book, whose cast of characters includes Haile Selassie, Anthony Burgess and General Sikorski, sets Gibraltar in the wider context of the struggle against fascism, from Abyssinia through the Spanish Civil War. It also chronicles the end of empire and the rise to independence of the Gibraltarian people.
  • Nicholas Rankin

    Nicholas Rankin spent twenty years broadcasting for BBC World Service where he was Chief Producer and won two UN awards. He is the author of Dead Man's Chest, Telegram from Guernica and the bestselling Churchill's Wizards, the story of British intelligence in the two World Wars.

“Rankin is a wonderful storyteller … Hitler hinted that his failure to take Gibraltar in the summer of 1940 was his gravest mistake during the war. Historians aren’t supposed to indulge in counterfactuals but it does make you think.”
- The Times
“This meticulously researched book is well timed, as this year marks the 50th anniversary of Gibraltar’s 1967 referendum, which yielded a 99.6 per cent vote in favour of continued British sovereignty.”
- BBC History Magazine

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