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Invasion 1940: The Nazi Invasion Plan for Britain [Paperback]

Walter Schellenberg
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 Mar 2001
In compliance with the Fuhrer's directive on the imminent invasion of Britain in 1940, the Gestapo prepared a secret handbook for the occupation forces. The first part, edited by senior Nazi Walter Schellenberg who had been educated in England, is a detailed analysis of how the Germans thought the country worked. The second, equally intriguing section is a list of the men and women the Gestapo had earmarked for immediate arrest. Written in August 1940, the handbook sheds extraordinary light on the British political system, the establishment, the church, industry, the police, trade unions and even the Boy Scouts. The chapter on the British Secret Service was considered so embarrassingly accurate that the few copies captured at the end of the war were retained by the authorities, and it is only now, more than half a century later, that a translation has been made to reveal the full remarkable truth.

Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: St Ermin's; New Ed edition (1 Mar 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0953615138
  • ISBN-13: 978-0953615131
  • Product Dimensions: 19.2 x 12.4 x 2.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 578,847 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Bizarrely for a nation that in many respects was remarkably similar for us, they [the handbook] completely misunderstood the British (Norman Stone)

INVASION 1940 makes for compulsive reading, rather as if one had unearthed a confidential report on oneself. (DAILY TELEGRAPH)

Book Description

* Chilling and bizarre handbook for the occupation of Britain, written by Hitler's secret police in 1940. This is FATHERLAND for real.

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
3.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Invasion 1940 18 Jun 2011
A fascinating book on who and what organisations may have been targeted if invasion took place, written by one of the SS team involved in the invasion planning. However the book must be readwith some caution. As his other books have shown- including his autobiographer - Schellenberg was a bit of a fantastist. In addition, he had a few axes to grind, as did theorganisation he worked for. Some of the "information" on targetted organisatons is to put it mildly flawed. No doubtdue to political attitude as well as doubtful intelligence. For those reasons though the book is useful in giving an insight into German and Nazi ideas on Britain at the time and how the occupation may have been enforced.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Despite what some reviewers have written, this is a fascinating book. Why? Well, for a start, the expert analysis by Professors John Keegan & John Ericksson puts the documents into context and adds a further dimension.

The first part of the book reveals how the Nazis thought the UK was run. So there are the 'sinister' boy scouts and public schools organisations, in their opinion. The second part - the Nazi arrest list - is very thought-provoking. From the obvious Nazi targets politicians, famous anti-Nazis through to the man on the street ( of course most of the people listed are not famous - most people aren't!) - very often refugees who had fled the Nazis. I found names and addresses just streets away from where I live of suspects the Nazis were after. One interesting point is that the list is full of spelling mistakes and inaccuracies: famous Jewish psychologist Sigmund Freud is on the list, although he had died before the war. It shows that the list was hurriedly put together in summer 1940 when the Germans were considering invading Britain sooner rather than later.

The whole book really makes you think and is chilling - the documents it contains are a revealing plan of how they would have disassembled the various organisations and fabric of Britain and lists the various (mostly) everyday people they would have hunted down. What would have happened to them is anyone's guess...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting book for my dad 18 Feb 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
My dad is finding this interesting to read and is working through it, along with other 10 other Second World War books!
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very Dull 13 Feb 2003
By Tryp
I find the title of this book rather misleading as it is not about the military invasion plans for Britain, instead it is a handbook for future Nazi administrators of Britain attempting to explain how the country is run. What you get is a badly written account of the administative structure of the country, police force, county councils etc, a potted history of the Anglican church and its heirarchy, a list of major industries and companies. It reads like a series of encyclopaedia articles stitched together, indeed the Encyclopaedia Britannica with the Picture Post and evidence from two British agents captured in Holland are the sources for the supposedly revelatory section on the secret service. The only real interest is to show just how little the Nazis really knew about the inner workings of Britain in 1940. The second section of the book is a long list of people to be detained as soon as the invasion was completed, the vast majority of whom you will not have heard of. This may be invaluable reading for serious historians but I would recommend the general reader steer well clear.
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