By Simon Ball
El Alamein used to be one of many pivotal battles of the second one international battle, fought via armies and air forces at the innovative of army know-how. but Alamein has constantly had a patchy popularity - with many commentators keen to knock its significance.
This ebook explains simply why El Alamein is one of these arguable conflict. in accordance with a thorough studying of the modern assets, particularly the vast and lately declassified British bugging of Axis prisoners of battle, army historian Simon Ball turns Alamein on its head, explaining it as a cultural defeat for Britain.
Alamein is an army historical past of the conflict - exhibiting how varied it seems to be stripped of later cultural excrescences. however it additionally exhibits how 'Alamein tradition' saturated the post-war global, while archival resources mingled with movie, novels, magazines, well known histories, and the remainder of Alamein's footprint.
Whether you have an interest within the conflict itself or its cultural afterlife, in case you have an opinion approximately Alamein, you will query it after studying this book.
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Additional info for Alamein
65 On the morning of October , General Alexander, accompanied by the chief of staff, Middle East Forces, Richard McCreery, and the member of the War Cabinet resident in Cairo, the Australian politician Richard Casey, arrived at Tactical HQ, Eighth Army. Montgomery was forced to perform a dog-and-pony show for his superior ofﬁcer. Just as Churchill had written in veiled form to Alexander, little of explicit interest was recorded of the meeting. There were various dramatic later accounts of this meeting, including one published by Freddie de Guingand in .
Such messages were designed for effect, not to record a literal reality. The men who wrote were middle-aged, sometimes scared, often in poor health, and always tired. Some were highly sensitive, but such sensitivity found little part in their communications. They both performed, and performed in, their roles. It is possible to tap into the cycle of reporting and processing and ﬁnd a version of Alamein ‘unplugged’. OUP CORRECTED PROOF – FINAL, 10/5/2016, SPi ALAMEIN UNPLUGGED The ‘face of battle’ rapidly superseded the ‘footprint of battle’ in Alamein’s cultural afterlife.
OUP CORRECTED PROOF – FINAL, 10/5/2016, SPi NAMES had arisen in classifying the pre-battle of El Alamein raids on Tobruk and Benghazi on – September . The committee judged these operations ‘minor affairs’, too insigniﬁcant for battle honours, but classiﬁed them nevertheless, as prolepsis for public sensitivity to slights against commandos. 12 In order to achieve their goal the Alamein revisionists used lawyers; lobbied government ministers, ofﬁcial historians, journalists, and newspaper editors; and, probably more potently, wrote or encouraged the publication of partisan popular history.