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Customer Review

on 11 February 2013
There is much of interest in this book. The author has obviously spent much time in researching prime sources and has a done a good job in presenting his subject in a readable and informative fashion. It is a pity that to arrive at an absorbing narrative he has felt it necessary to look at his object through a liberal-left tinted lens of fifty years of hindsight. One cannot really apply modern views on civil and human rights to actions taking place in earlier days when hanging, flogging and detention were approved legal measures. He bewails the Government decision not to open the archives after 1965 - the obvious good reason is that a lot of which they contain is still live, and could prejudice current policy or operations, although one has sympathy for the view that historians as well as official "weeders" should be involved in the decision whether or not to grant access. It is also a pity that his style is jarred by his too frequent habit of referring to organisations and units as "outfits" - hardly an elegant term. The author's sterling research efforts would have benefited from a more concise, independent and less censorious treatment but the facts it contains, and its breadth of coverage commend this book to the serious historian and casual reader alike.
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