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Churchill's Wizards: The British Genius for Deception 1914-1945
 
 

Churchill's Wizards: The British Genius for Deception 1914-1945 [Kindle Edition]

Nicholas Rankin
5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)

Kindle-Preis: EUR 7,80 Inkl. MwSt. und kostenloser drahtloser Lieferung über Amazon Whispernet

Weitere Ausgaben

Amazon-Preis Neu ab Gebraucht ab
Kindle Edition EUR 12,60  
Kindle Edition, 18. September 2008 EUR 7,80  
Gebundene Ausgabe EUR 23,49  
Taschenbuch EUR 14,00  


Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen


"A delight-filled account...as much an entertainment as history."--Wall Street Journal


"A fascinating new book about British intelligence s deception operations against the Axis powers. --Washington Post SpyTalk


Rankin's page-turner makes the most of the gifted amateurs, eccentrics, and professional illusionists responsible for the imaginative schemes of the British military and details the care and seriousness with which they were implemented. --Foreign Affairs


"There isn't a dull page -- not even a dull sentence -- in Nicholas Rankin's fantastic wunderkabinet of wartime revelations. It is all here -- colonels in drag, midget submarines, corpses with stashed secrets, a black radio station called Aspidistra and more inventions than James Bond's Q could ever conceive -- and is endlessly fascinating in consequence. No better book about the mad arcana of belligerence has ever been written."--Simon Winchester


Pressestimmen


"A delight-filled account...as much an entertainment as history." --Wall Street Journal


"A fascinating new book about British intelligence s deception operations against the Axis powers. --Washington Post SpyTalk


Rankin's page-turner makes the most of the gifted amateurs, eccentrics, and professional illusionists responsible for the imaginative schemes of the British military and details the care and seriousness with which they were implemented. --Foreign Affairs


"There isn't a dull page -- not even a dull sentence -- in Nicholas Rankin's fantastic wunderkabinet of wartime revelations. It is all here -- colonels in drag, midget submarines, corpses with stashed secrets, a black radio station called Aspidistra and more inventions than James Bond's Q could ever conceive -- and is endlessly fascinating in consequence. No better book about the mad arcana of belligerence has ever been written."--Simon Winchester


"Good, rollicking fun."--Max Hastings


"Rankin tells an enthralling, not to say astounding, true-life tale of inflatable tanks and dummy airfields and of pretend radio stations reporting on imaginary armies."--Michael Kerrigan, The Scotsman


"Nicholas Rankin's book [is a] hymn to amateur invention and its stunningly professional deployment.... It is a book of marvellous yarns, which will appeal to a far wider readership than the sombre consumers of standard military history. Regimental bores may rail, but it's hard to think of anyone with a taste for human ingenuity being anything other than enchanted and, if British, sneakily proud. Knee in the goolies. Out like a light. Works every time."--Michael Bywater, Daily Telegraph


"A thoroughly entertaining read, helped along by Rankin's engaging style. But it's the characters that keep you hooked."--Jonathan Carter, London Lite


"Nicholas Rankin's well-researched and highly enjoyable book.... [There are] many superb stories of the camouflage, black propaganda, secret intelligence and special forces of the two world wars, which he does very entertainingly indeed."--Andrew Roberts, Daily Telegraph


"Rankin is a great guide to these arts.... [His] enthusiasm for and knowledge of his subject has produced a book replete with anecdote, character sketches and revelations, all embedded in an ability to sketch the military and civilian background with enough clarity to support his narrative and repertoire of characters."--John Lloyd, The Herald


"Mr. Rankin goes poking and probing the lesser-known facts of the two World Wars. What an entertaining journey he provides."--Len Deighton


"A most enjoyable read."--Thaddeus Holt, author of The Deceivers: Allied Military Deception in the Second World War


"This is a story clamouring to be told. During the war we heard rumours, knew there was something called 'camouflage' going on but could not have imagined the scope of the inventiveness, the daring of these people's imaginations. What a galaxy of talents - designers of all kinds, real magicians, the make-up people, dyers, painters and inventors. The theatre and the military created whole armies, ships, navies, aircraft, arsenals of weapons out of shadows and illusions, out of fantasies and clever paint and trickery. I could not stop reading this book once I had begun."--Doris Lessing


"Nicholas Rankin's engrossing book tells the story of the ambitious and complex deceptions perpetrated by the plucky Brits, which contributed to the turning of the tide and the winning of the Second World War.... What makes Churchill's Wizards such an uncommon and arresting read is the detail of these hair-brained schemes. You couldn't make this stuff up. And yet, that's just what Churchill's so-called 'Unknown Warriors' did. With this remarkable book Rankin does them proud."--Miles Fielder, Scotland on Sunday


"If ever a book was meant to have a soundtrack that plays along as you read it, this is it. And that soundtrack should be the theme to The Great Escape, because Churchill's Wizards is packed with tales of derring-do and deception -- tales that in some cases remained hush-hush for decades.... Rankin clearly carried out extensive research for this book and it's paid off. It's fascinating, witty, and will provide you with more anecdotes than you can shake a stick with a papier-mache head at."--Andy Ridgway, Focus Magazine


"Many of the stories...have been told before, but Rankin has enhanced them with recently released papers and diaries. It is very good reading and provides an intimate look at the use of deception and those who made it work. This valuable book gives a new perspective to the history of the warfare and deception." -- Hayden B. Peake, CIA Historical Intelligence Collection



Produktinformation

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 2151 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 489 Seiten
  • ISBN-Quelle für Seitenzahl: 019538704X
  • Verlag: Faber & Faber Non Fiction (18. September 2008)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B002RI90B8
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #95.964 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

  •  Ist der Verkauf dieses Produkts für Sie nicht akzeptabel?

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0 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Cgurchill's Wizzards 29. September 2013
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
Buch über die Arbeit des britischen Geheimdienstes während des zweiten Weltkrieges. Einige wenige Fotoseiten mit Bildern zu diesem Thema, wenig zur Technik des Geheimdienstes.
War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?
Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.9 von 5 Sternen  54 Rezensionen
57 von 61 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A witty and throroughly entertaining new book 2. Dezember 2009
Von Robin J. Lewis - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Nicholas Rankin opens up a fascinating hidden world of camouflage, deception, and trickery that makes for a crackling good read, British-style. This is an engrossing account of the some of the geniuses who "saved the day" for Britain in the two world wars, some of them famous (T.E. Lawrence and John Buchan), some of them undeservedly obscure (Sefton Delmer, Dudley Clarke). The depth of detail uncovered by Rankin's research is remarkable in itself, but it is the deft and entertaining writing that makes this a hugely enjoyable book. I've rarely had such a good time reading such an intricately woven history, and I am sure other readers will enjoy it too.
39 von 42 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A fascinating yarn about the fine art of deceiving the enemy 9. Januar 2009
Von S. McGee - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
The roots of the Allies' victory over Hitler's Germany in World War II, Nicholas Rankin argues in this fascinating, were sown decades earlier during the First World War in 1914, when military strategists recognized the need for new tactics. In the trenches, decisive victories in face-to-face battles by armies appeared to be impossible to come by. Maybe, they mused, finding ways to baffle and distract the enemy -- painting warships in bizarre patterns that confused U-boat captains, say, or hiding snipers in fake trees -- was not only possible but could actually give them an edge in this new kind of warfare.

Winston Churchill had been in a unique position to learn these lessons, overseeing the disaster of the Gallipoli landings (and the crucial role played by camouflage in the successful evacuations from under the noses of the Turks in 1916) as well as trench warfare on the Western front. Not surprisingly, he became convinced that propaganda, special forces, camouflage and propaganda would be vital in winning the next war. When that war came in 1939, he enlisted the talents of a vast array of artists, novelists, film-makers, scientists and other oddball experts and fantasists - collectively referred to as "Churchill's Wizards" - in the collective project of deceiving Hitler's Germany and Mussolini's Italy. (Japanese intelligence officers, the British eventually concluded, were too dim-witted and ineffective to fool.)

The genesis of these strategies and tactics in the first war and the extraordinary heights to which they rose during the second that serve as the focus of Rankin's excellent book. Some of the wizards, for instance, wondered whether they could use a surplus of oil to literally set fire to the sea and deter a threatened German invasion in 1940. When that didn't work out, other wizards decided to turn their unsuccessful research into successful propaganda by convincing German troops encamped on the French coast that this was a distinct possiblility. German pilots shot down in their (burning) aircraft, were cited as evidence; arch-wizard Sefton Delmer, a journalist, gave mock English lessons revolving around phrases like "The sea is burning", in radio programs beamed to German troops (and presented as if they originated back in Munich or Bremen.) That did work, as Rankin recounts, and panicky German troops wrote letters home in which they told of their fear of being burned alive. The reasons that the Nazi invasion of Britain was never launched had little to do with this campaign, of course, but it's tempting to ponder about the impact on German morale if it and the other defense tactics (machine-gun posts embedded in gentlemens' public toilets) prepared and carefully camouflaged had actually been put to use.

Rankin's book is a fascinating glimpse behind the scenes at unfamiliar campaigns like this as well as far better-known ones (notably, the attempt to convince Hitler that the Normandy invasion was actually a diversion). It is based on a vast treasure trove of material, which Rankin has miraculously whipped into a narrative that is not only coherent (no mean feat!) but lively and compelling. The reader is immediately engrossed in the often-oddball stories he tells, such as the evolution of air warfare (at first, enemy pilots engaged in reconaissance would salute each other respectfully; then they started hurling bricks at each other; ultimately, they began trying to shoot each other down with pistols) and the adventures of the great spy, `Garbo', aka Juan Pujol. But Rankin goes well beyond simply assembling an array of great tales and fascinating portraits of such characters as Pujol, Sefton Delmer or T.E. Lawrence (yes, that Lawrence.) He chronicles the way in which warfare and the nature of military intelligence underwent a fundamental transformation and the evolution of a world in which military success would hinge to a large extent on the success of the wizards. Rankin shows convincingly how and why simple camouflage was not enough; deceiving the eyes of the enemy was good, but military strategists had to deceive their minds as well, to move on to outright psychological manipulation. Moreover, successful deception wasn't just "about getting them to think what you want, but to do what you want."

The wizards triumphed, and World War Two finally ended with the defeat of Hitler's Germany and later, of Japan. But Rankin's book ends on a more somber note, with his thoughts on the role that deception and propaganda played in convincing the public in the United States and Britain that the Iraqi war was necessary in 2003. His point that these tactics have their problematic side is valid, but it's an awkward end to the book that should have been reserved for an author's afterward. Still, those few pages aside, this book stands as an impeccably-researched work of history. Over its course, Rankin successfully instills in the reader a sense of deep admiration for the creativity and commitment of the "wizards" during the years of the Second World War, when to many of them it must have seemed as if defeat - and the triumph of fascist regimes - was all too likely. It's a salutary reminder of the real nature of evil, and the many and different roles that individuals played in defeating it. As exciting to read as many of the best spy thrillers, it deserves to becomes a classic.
26 von 30 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Page-turner 7. Dezember 2009
Von S. Bachman - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
A celebration of cleverness and cunning! This book explores the creation and use of camouflage, propaganda, secret intellengence, and special forces in the twentieth century British military. Anyone interested in military history will be fascinated to follow the evolution of this aspect of the action. Would love to hear the author speak or read excerps, as enthusiasm for the subject is clear and engaging. Didn't want to put it down!
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Deception revealed 30. März 2011
Von John Gale - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
This tome is a mine of information, particularly concerning military activities since and during the Great War of 1914 in Part 1 of the book. Lawrence of Arabia's involvement and the whole scenario in the Middle East at the time is particularly well explained.
There are fascinating revelations throughout, and this continues in Part 2 which deals primarily with WW2. The epilogue brings us to the present era and a set of extensive notes.
Nicholas Rankin has given us a scholarly, well-researched account from a British standpoint while always retaining a readable and pleasant style.
It's hard to put it down.
9 von 10 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen A Genius for Deception 18. Dezember 2009
Von Dan Mcguire - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
An excellent book if you are into this genre. Lots of details, names, dates, but interesting reading. It is especially exciting for me because of previous books I have read on the subject, such as The Wizard War.
If you like history, you will love this book.
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Deception, not concealment, is the object of camouflage stated the official pamphlet on its principles and practice. &quote;
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