RAF Combat Units: SEAC 1941-1945 (Osprey Airwar 23) by Bryan Philpott

By Bryan Philpott

This publication strains the heritage of RAF strive against devices flying in Singapore and Burma. the foremost plane kinds operated via the RAF in this interval are all lined, and their missions distinctive. plane markings and aircrew uniforms are proven in complete color illustrations.

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Additional info for RAF Combat Units: SEAC 1941-1945 (Osprey Airwar 23)

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It was June 5, 1940. On the previous day, the last waterlogged Allied soldier had been snatched off the fire-swept beaches. The prime minister was stunned. Although a nearmiracle had brought 338,226 men to England, the refugees arrived with only twenty-five tanks, twelve artillery pieces, and a few machine guns. Left behind along the French coast were 63,879 vehicles, 2,472 artillery pieces and mortars, 8,000 Bren guns, 90,000 rifles, and 76,097 tons of shells and ammunition. Great Britain had suffered a shocking military debacle, perhaps the worst in her history.

Far from being a benign “observer,” as Colonel Lahousen had described him, Walter von Hausberger was an ardent boom-and-bang operative. Since arriving in the United States a year earlier, he had planted saboteurs at the Packard, Ford, Chrysler, and Hudson automobile factories in Detroit, at the Harrison Gas Works in New Jersey, in the New York Liquidometer factory, and at the four Brewster aviation plants. Julius Bergman, the other spy the nervous Hans Thomsen had been forced to harbor in the German Embassy, was a hardened old pro in the sabotage and espionage fields.

After reaching the United States in mid-1939, Bergman purchased a modest home in a New York City suburb (with Abwehr funds) and began collecting a large cache of explosives, caps, and fuses. His main targets would be ships in New York harbor. Taking along a pair of genuine American stevedores he had recruited, Bergman conducted several reconnaissances of the waterfront. He was shocked by an almost total absence of security. Looking for places to hide bombs later, 24 A Rocky Road to War the three men boarded two large cargo ships and wandered around for more than thirty minutes without being challenged.

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