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The incredible untold story of WWII’s greatest secret fighting force, as told by our great modern master of wartime intrigue Britain’s Special Air Service—or SAS—was the brainchild of David Stirling, a young, gadabout aristocrat whose aimlessness in early life belied a remarkable strategic mind. Where most of his colleagues looked at a battlefield map of World War II’s African theater and saw a protracted struggle with Rommel’s desert forces, Stirling saw an opportunity: given a small number of elite, well-trained men, he could parachute behind enemy lines and sabotage their airplanes and war material. Paired with his constitutional opposite, the disciplined martinet Jock Lewes, Stirling assembled a revolutionary fighting force that would upend not just the balance of the war, but the nature of combat itself. He faced no little resistance from those who found his tactics ungentlemanly or beyond the pale, but in the SAS’s remarkable exploits facing the Nazis in the Africa and then on the Continent can be found the seeds of nearly all special forces units that would follow. Bringing his keen eye for psychological detail to a riveting wartime narrative, Ben Macintyre uses his unprecedented access to SAS archives to shine a light inside a legendary unit long shrouded in secrecy. The result is not just a tremendous war story, but a fascinating group portrait of men of whom history and country asked the most.
The latest from the bestselling author of Operation Mincemeat and A Spy Among Friends -- the untold story of one of WWII's most important secret military units. Ben Macintyre's latest book of derring-do and wartime intrigue reveals the incredible story of the last truly unsung secret organization of World War II -- Britain's Special Air Service, or the SAS. Facing long odds and a tough slog against Rommel and the German tanks in the Middle East theatre, Britain turned to the brainchild of one its most unlikely heroes -- David Stirling, a young man whose aimlessness and almost practiced ennui belied a remarkable mind for strategy. With the help of his equally unusual colleague, the rough-and-tumble Jock Lewes, Stirling sought to assemble a crack team of highly trained men who would parachute in behind enemy lines to throw monkey wrenches into the German war machine. Though he faced stiff resistance from those who believed such activities violated the classic rules of war, Stirling persevered and in the process created a legacy. Staffed by brilliant, idiosyncratic men whose talents defied both tradition and expectations, the SAS would not only change the course of the war, but the very nature of combat itself. Written with complete access to the never-before-seen SAS archives (who chose Macintyre as their official historian), Rogue Heroes offers a powerfully intimate look at life on the battlefield as lived by a group of remarkable soldiers whose contributions have, until now, gone unrecognized beyond the classified world. Filled with wrenching set pieces and weaving its way through multiple theatres of our grandest and most terrible war, this book is both an excellent addition to the Macintyre library and a critical piece in our understanding of the war's unfolding.
The incredible untold story of WWII's greatest secret fighting force, as told by our great modern master of wartime intrigue Britain's Special Air Service--or SAS--was the brainchild of David Stirling, a young, gadabout aristocrat whose aimlessness in early life belied a remarkable strategic mind. Where most of his colleagues looked at a battlefield map of World War II's African theater and saw a protracted struggle with Rommel's desert forces, Stirling saw an opportunity: given a small number of elite, well-trained men, he could parachute behind enemy lines and sabotage their airplanes and war material. Paired with his constitutional opposite, the disciplined martinet Jock Lewes, Stirling assembled a revolutionary fighting force that would upend not just the balance of the war, but the nature of combat itself. He faced no little resistance from those who found his tactics ungentlemanly or beyond the pale, but in the SAS's remarkable exploits facing the Nazis in the Africa and then on the Continent can be found the seeds of nearly all special forces units that would follow. Bringing his keen eye for psychological detail to a riveting wartime narrative, Ben Macintyre uses his unprecedented access to SAS archives to shine a light inside a legendary unit long shrouded in secrecy. The result is not just a tremendous war story, but a fascinating group portrait of men of whom history and country asked the most.
From the secret SAS archives, and acclaimed author Ben Macintyre: the first ever authorized history of the SAS 'Impeccably researched, superbly told - by far the best book on the SAS in World War II' - Antony Beevor In the summer of 1941, at the height of the war in the Western Desert, a bored and eccentric young officer, David Stirling, came up with a plan that was radical and entirely against the rules: a small undercover unit that would inflict mayhem behind enemy lines. Despite intense opposition, Winston Churchill personally gave Stirling permission to recruit the toughest, brightest and most ruthless soldiers he could find. So began the most celebrated and mysterious military organisation in the world: the SAS. Now, 75 years later, the SAS has finally decided to tell its astonishing story. It has opened its secret archives for the first time, granting historian Ben Macintyre full access to a treasure trove of unseen reports, memos, diaries, letters, maps and photographs, as well as free rein to interview surviving Originals and those who knew them. The result is an exhilarating tale of fearlessness and heroism, recklessness and tragedy; of extraordinary men who were willing to take monumental risks. It is a story about the meaning of courage.
Chronicles World War II's pivotal deception by two British naval officers who successfully fed false intelligence to the Nazis about where Allied forces were planning an attack in southern Europe. By the author of Agent Zigzag.
The number one bestselling author of Agent Zigzag and Operation Mincemeat exposes the true story of the D Day Spies.
A gripping tale of loyalty, love, treachery, espionage, and the thin and shifting line between fidelity and betrayal.

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