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Bomber Harris: The Authorized Biography [Paperback]

Dudley Saward
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere; New edition edition (1 Jan 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0722176589
  • ISBN-13: 978-0722176580
  • Product Dimensions: 17.2 x 11 x 3.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,017,927 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

The authorised biography of the man who lead Bomber Command during World War 2.

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
3.7 out of 5 stars
This item has not been released yet and is not eligible to be reviewed. Reviews shown are from other formats of this item.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A hero worshipper's perspective 22 Mar 2010
Dudley Saward has written a blatant but necessary hagiography of his wartime C.O. Saward was a Group captain under Harris and a trusted staff officer with particular responsibility for the increasingly sophisticated electronic warfare measures carried by Bomber Command as the war progressed. So this was never going to be a wholly objective biography. In fairness there are many diatribes against Harris so anyone wanting to discover whether Harris was indeed the "butcher" is well advised to read this.
Britain needed men like Harris. When it looked as though our days were numbered he was the only man able to carry the fight back against Germany and this he did with the kind of ruthless and single minded determination required in desperate times. The effect and impact of relentless night bombing on the German psyche should not be underestimated, let alone its impact on war production (Speer's views are quoted throughout the book). Harris defended the objectives of his command with a rigour and confidence that earned him the admiration and respect (though perhaps not friendship) even of great men such as Eisenhower,and Saward defends Harris with equal passion.
It is easy to see the character of Harris through Saward's inclusion of lengthy correspondence between Harris and various other war leaders particularly Churchill. Harris comes across not as a team player but as a blunt and arrogant bombast with a penchant for what he would no doubt regard as wit but which on the written page is snide sarcasm. For page after hundreds of pages Harris seemingly puts no foot wrong in either his judgement or prediction of the course of the war.
So was he the "butcher" of Dresden? No of course not. Strategy is just that, and V2s still rained down on London while Dresden was being attacked.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Better than most. 23 Aug 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I am always somewhat suspicious of "authorized" biographies as the are often biased. In this case, having read several other books on th subject I was quite impressed. The subject is a very controversial figure and in many ways I feel he has had a bad, and unjustified, press. In reality many of the accusations made against him simply don't stand up to close scrutiny. A very good read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Top Man 18 Dec 2013
By nasty52
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Excellent book, in excellent condition for second hand,we should have him in charge today.We need someone like him now cheers
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars THAT'S WHY THERE ARE WARS 7 Dec 1999
By M. Fonseca - Published on
That's why there are wars: the men at command, who gives the bloody orders, always find someone to carry on these orders with maximum effort. Arthur Harris was this guy, ruthlessly obeying the directives to Bomber Command during WW II, and enjoying every piece of his tasks (which was destroy German cities). A good book.
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Debunks the "Carpetbombing Cruel and Ineffective" Myth 30 Nov 1999
By Jan Peczkis - Published on
Saward presents eye-opening evidence for the efficacy of Allied bombing in WWII. He proves that the lost productivity of a carpet-bombed city was much more significant than the lost productivity of a destroyed munitions factory (which was very difficult to hit anyway). Albert Speer makes this clear. Had Arthur Harris been listened to, perhaps Nazi Germany would have collapsed at least a year sooner than it did.
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