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Major Farran's Hat: Murder, Scandal and Britain's War Against Jewish Terrorism, 1945-1948 Hardcover – 5 Mar 2009

4.0 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Heinemann; 1st Edition edition (5 Mar. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0434018449
  • ISBN-13: 978-0434018444
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 2.5 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 701,143 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

David Cesarani ... has now combined the excitement of a thriller with the use of hitherto unexamined sources ... Cesarani's meticulous investigation of 'counter-gang' and 'pseudo-gang' techniques leads to this great conclusion: Wherever the form was employed it resulted in illegality, extra-judicial execution (that is to say murder) and scandal. The toxic legacy of the special squads contaminated British colonial policy for decades. --Jonathan Mirsky, Spectator

In 200 or so tightly written and commendably referenced pages Professor David Cesarani tells the tragic story of Rubowitz and the equally tragic story of Farran, against the dreadful backcloth of the last, bloody years of the Palestine Mandate. --Jewish Chronicle

... an expose of the last days of the British mandate in Palestine and the tension between the civil and military authorities in the struggle against various strands of the Zionist movement ... the great triumph of this book is in exposing what happens when those in the world of intelligence work outside the law ... MAJOR FARRAN'S HAT is a piece of contemporary history with bite and verve. --Tony Kushner, Times High Education

Review

`In 200 or so tightly written and commendably referenced pages Professor David Cesarani tells the tragic story of Rubowitz and the equally tragic story of Farran, against the dreadful backcloth of the last, bloody years of the Palestine Mandate.'

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I was disappointed in this book. It is very good at painting the general background to this very controversial episode but there appear to a lot of assumptions made in the book where no reference is made to the evidence from which these assumptions must spring. Ultimately, I am no more knowledgable about whether Roy Farren actually committed the alleged murder. The actual evidence that is quoted is extremely sketchy and could not support a conviction in any court but the author talks of Farren as being a murderer and refers to documents he has not seen (because they have been destroyed) in support of this conclusion. I would have hoped an academic would have based any conclusion on clearly established evidence, rather than hearsay, speculation and propaganda from the protagonists.
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Format: Hardcover
Was looking forward to reading this book but was very disappointed. The writer obviously has an axe to grind and used emotive language when it was unnecessary. The narrative of the story would have sufficed to have condemned Farran but the writer puts the boot in time and again. I honestly thought the writer was related to the murdered boy.

Some interesting background to the crisis. The writer mentions without any moral judgement that Stern approached the Nazis against Britain! He says Bevin exaggerated the US Israeli lobby but later says that Truman promoted for domestic votes Jewish immigration to Palestine.

Has a dig at Farran's "deep and primitive" Catholic faith and also how he shot Germans in Crete during a savage battle. Farran is pitiless to his enemies. At least he didn't hang them or booby trap them I suppose. Also Farran has a blatant disregard for the law. Hello David, Palestine was pretty lawless at the time.

To ensure the reader is unsure if Farran is a bad egg the fact that he has £100 when he escaped was a "hint that he was not quite as innocent as he pretended to be". It's just relentless. He also has a low dig against Farran saying he didn't fight the Nazis to stop the Holocaust and couldn't have cared less for the Jews. Farran's legal team is described as "pushy". He has "powerful friends in London". On verdict Farran's mother shows "cloyingly sentimental expressions of relief". Newspapers who agree with verdict are "jingoistic". He got it dead right about Browning, one of the most slippery and incompetent senior officers in the Army at that time.

The sergeants killings and King David hotel bombing are passed over quite quickly, the riots are dragged out like Kristallnacht.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As one who served in Palestine at the time of the events recorded in this book I found it well researched and on the whole fair, although rather biased towards the Jewish viewwpoint. I felt that Roy Farran's wartime career was not given its due credit. (Read Operation Tombola for instance)
What I found particularly intesting was the ramifications, political and terrorist, in Europe and in England,as those serving in Palestine had little acces to media reports from England. Infomative and interesting. CLEVELAND
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