Operation Tabarin: Britain's Secret Wartime Expedition to Antarctica 1944-46Hardback
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- Publisher: The History Press Ltd
- Format: Hardback | 256 pages
- Dimensions: 158mm x 236mm x 30mm | 560g
- Publication date: 1 July 2014
- Publication City/Country: Stroud
- ISBN 10: 0752493566
- ISBN 13: 9780752493565
- Edition statement: New.
- Illustrations note: 22 black & white illustrations, 16 black & white plates
- Sales rank: 108,765
In 1943, with the German Sixth Army annihilated at Stalingrad and Rommel's Afrika Korps in full retreat after defeat at El Alamein, Winston Churchill's War Cabinet met to discuss the opening of a new front. Its battles would be fought not on the beaches of Normandy or in the jungles of Burma but amid the blizzards and glaciers of the Antarctic. Originally conceived as a means by which to safeguard the Falkland Islands from Japanese invasion and to deny harbours in the sub-Antarctic territories to German surface raiders and U-boats, the expedition also sought to re-assert British sovereignty in the face of incursions by neutral Argentina. As well as setting in train a sequence of events that would eventually culminate in the Falklands War, the British bases secretly established in 1944 would go on to play a vital part in the Cold War and lay the foundations for one of the most important and enduring government-sponsored programmes of scientific research in the polar regions: the British Antarctic Survey. Based upon contemporary sources, including official reports and the diaries and letters of the participants, Operation Tabarintells for the first time the story of this, the only Antarctic expedition to be launched by any of the combatant nations during the Second World War and one of the most curious episodes in what Ernest Shackleton called 'the white warfare of the south'.
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STEPHEN HADDELSEY is the author of three previous books on the history of polar exploration: Born Adventurer: The Life of Frank Bickerton, Ice Captain: The Life of J.R. Stenhouse and Shackleton's Dream: Fuchs, Hillary and the Crossing of Antarctica (nominated for the William Mills Prize for Polar Literature). He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and is currently working with the British Antarctic Survey on plans to excavate 'South Ice', the forward base of the Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition, which was abandoned in January 1958. ALAN CARROLL was base leader at Port Lockroy, Antarctica, from 1954 to 1957 and was heavily involved in Cold War-related operations there. Alan is the Historic Adviser to the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust and was awarded the Polar Medal in 2008.