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History Happy Hour

Episode 87: Disaster at Dieppe

Acclaimed British historian Patrick Bishop will join us this week to discuss his new book: Operation Jubilee: Dieppe 1942, The Folly and the Sacrifice. To learn more about this tragic and controversial day, please be sure to check out the following books.

One Day in August: Ian Fleming, Enigma , and the Deadly Raid on Dieppe, David O’Keefe HHH alumnus David O’Keefe has done groundbreaking work on the role that the intelligence war and the race to crack the enigma code played in Operation Jubilee. One Day in August provides some tantalizing possibilities for what was at stake during the Dieppe Raid and gives a possible explanation of why the raid happened in the first place. Our Finest Hour, David Bercuson Bercuson is one of Canada’s leading military historians. Finest Hour is a good popular history of Canada’s role in WWII. Lots of terrific oral history accounts and a solid chapter on the Dieppe raid and it’s impact on Canada. Mountbatten: Apprentice at War, Adrian Smith The most recent attempt to get a handle on the character of Mountbatten. While Smith is a bit to forgiving of Mountbatten in places, I believe he honestly looks at this important figures’ weaknesses as well as his strengths. The book is certainly the most honest assessment of Mountbatten I’ve looked at. The Commandos at Dieppe: Rehearsal for D-Day, William Fowler Despite the problems I have with the title-Dieppe was never a rehearsal for D-Day-the book gives a good account of 4 Commando and their role in knocking out the Hess battery which, in a day of disasters, was one of the few bright spots of the raid. Interestingly, many of the American Rangers who were assigned to the raid were with 4 Commando so there is an American connection here. Dieppe: Tragedy to Triumph, Denis Whitaker Again, I think there is too much of an effort to sugarcoat the results with the title, but the book is an otherwise solid military history of the raid. Lots of good eyewitness and official documents used. If you want more of the nuts and bolts after reading Bishop this is a good place to go.

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