Autor: Tom Bower
Sinopse: Heroes do not win wars but without heroes wars are lost. That spontaneous or calculated act of unique courage in battle or behind enemy lines inspires lesser men to volunteer the ultimate sacrifice - although they may not witness the final victory.
In the Second World War, the demands for heroism were no less than in previous wars, but unlike other conflicts few among the hundreds of thousands of Allied fighting men and women doubted that their cause was just - to remove evil and restore peace in Europe, North Africa and the Far East.
During six years of conflict, thousands of individual acts of heroism by British, Commonwealth and Allied servicemen and women were recorded. The images remain forever haunting, exiting and inspiring: soldiers charging enemy pillboxes; pilots flying burning Lancasters; frogmen attaching mines in enemy harbors; SOE agents in occupied Europe suffering torture rather than betray their networks; escapees from POW camps; defenseless merchantmen in the Atlantic rescuing sailors from drowning; bomb disposal officers saving innocent lives; solitary guerrillas in jungles harassing the Japanese; the boffins in Britain sabotaging the Nazi dream; and that handful of commanders and politicians whose judgment inspired and planned the victory for which their and future generations owe everlasting gratitude.
Eyewitness of heroism among the Allied forces were emboldened by the sheer audacity of fellow officers and men, while their enemies became disheartened. For those at home, the accounts of daring in battlefields from France to Japan encouraged their patriotism, pride and comradeship.
A handful of those heroes were specially recognized. Through the evocative accounts of the courage of over 100 men and women, Tom Bower tells the authentic story of World War Two.
Este livro está muito bem documentado em termos fotográficos, em que cada página é uma janela para a realidade vivida por aqueles homens e mulheres. A biografia e as circunstâncias de cada acto heróico são apresentadas de forma muito reduzida, o que, a meu ver, constitui uma grande falha. A outra grande falha é ser muito parcial, focando-se somente nos actos das nações aliadas, esquecendo-se, por exemplo, dos Russos, que lutaram e derramaram bastante sangue contra o mesmo inimigo. Fora isso, é uma leitura agradável e ligeira, que dá luz do essencial da Segunda Guerra mundial sob o ponto de vista dos britânicos.
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Classificação: 3 estrelas