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Tony Allwright (Co Dublin Ireland)

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Commando Extraordinary: Otto Skorzeny (Cassell Military Classics)
Commando Extraordinary: Otto Skorzeny (Cassell Military Classics)
by John Foley
Edition: Paperback

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The original James Bond, and he's real and he's German, 18 Mar. 2008
A fascinating account of an honourable man who introduced the concept of Special Forces to the German military during World War 2.

In that role, as Hitler's trusted operative, he recounts much derring-do, such as rescuing Mussolini from mountain top captivity, bluffing the then Hungarian strongman into surrendering, wreaking covert havoc on the Allied invasion of France.

Particularly moving is his account, from the German viewpoint, of the invasion of the Soviet Union and the stoic, stolid, suicidal resistance of the Russians.

This page-turner of a book concludes with a forecast of the role of special Forces in future conflicts, which has turned out to be surprisingly prescient.

It was published way back in 1954.


A Doctor's War
A Doctor's War
by Aidan MacCarthy
Edition: Paperback

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brave, dogged Irish doctor survives Japanese brutality, shipwreck and imprisonment, 10 July 2007
This review is from: A Doctor's War (Paperback)
A stirring, compelling wartime memoir of an RAF volunteer doctor from Cork (in Ireland), who sees action in France, Dunkirk, Malaysia and Japan.

As a prisoner of war for several years, he bravely and doggedly faces a Japanese diet of scorn, deprivation and brutality, whilst seeking opportunities to practice his profession for the benefit of his fellow-captives.

He is torpedoed, his ship sunk, is rescued by the Japanese, leaps overboard again to escape a beating, is rescued again and is very nearly thrown back into the sea for a third time.

He ends up in Nagasaki where he survives the atomic bomb and lives to welcome and be rescued by the Americans in 1945.

Along the road, he witnesses incredible acts of courage and patriotic self-sacrifice, as well as understandable savagery, on the part of his fellow prisoners.

Yet his reflections contain little of rancour for his Japanese captors who treated him and his colleagues so abominably.

A lasting impression is the meticulous planning that went into post-invasion Japan - in stark contrast to post-invasion Iraq.


The Prize: Epic Quest for Oil, Money and Power
The Prize: Epic Quest for Oil, Money and Power
by Daniel Yergin
Edition: Paperback

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Prize, 19 May 2003
Marvellous book; reads like a novel; instructs painlessly; unputdownable. And there's a great photo of George W Bush as a child!


The Feather Men
The Feather Men
by Sir Ranulph Fiennes
Edition: Hardcover

31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thrilling & True, 13 Mar. 2000
This review is from: The Feather Men (Hardcover)
This is a marvellous account of derring-do, very skilfully related. I was living in Oman, the setting of most of the story, whilst reading the book. Discrete checks of many of the facts and visits to Christian cemetries in Muscat where some of the victims lie convinced me that the story is in fact true despite its incredible tortuosity. Unputdownable, and also disturbing, with a startling twist at the end.
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