Miles Dempsey, Commander of the British Second Army in the invasion of Europe 1944-45, is almost unknown to the general public. Yet his part in Britain's contribution to that campaign was second only to Montgomery's in importance. Dempsey survived two and a half years of bitter fighting as an infantry officer on the Western Front before accompanying his beloved Royal Berkshire Regiment in the little-known North West Persia campaign of 1920-21. In six years he rose from Major to command over half a million men in the largest combined operation in history, and led them to victory a year later.
Based on sources which include some of Dempsey's previously unpublished work and the views of those who knew him, the book traces his career as a soldier of rare distinction, a talented sportsman and a man of huge charm and shrewd intellect, dedicated to his beloved regiment and ever mindful of the lives of his soldiers.
Peter Rostron examines his methods of command and his relationships with Montgomery, his Corps commanders, the Americans and the RAF. It highlights his crucial role in the Dunkirk evacuation, the training of the Canadian Army, and the invasion of Sicily, Italy, and North West Europe, and analyses why his army performed so brilliantly on D Day. Lasly, Rostron examines his contribution to the campaign in Europe, focussing on the controversial operations of EPSOM, GOODWOOD, Arnhem and the Rhine Crossing.