Last of the Few: The Battle of Britain in the Words of the Pilots Who Won Itby Max Arthur
After the fall of France in May 1940, the British Expeditionary Force was miraculously evacuated from Dunkirk. Britain now stood alone to face Hitler’s inevitable invasion attempt. For the German army to land across the channel, Hitler needed mastery of the skiesthe Royal Air Force would have to be broken. So every day throughout the summer, German
After the fall of France in May 1940, the British Expeditionary Force was miraculously evacuated from Dunkirk. Britain now stood alone to face Hitler’s inevitable invasion attempt. For the German army to land across the channel, Hitler needed mastery of the skiesthe Royal Air Force would have to be broken. So every day throughout the summer, German bombers pounded the RAF air bases in the southern counties. Greatly outnumbered by the Luftwaffe, the pilots of RAF Fighter Command scrambled as many as five times a day, and civilians watched skies crisscrossed with the contrails from the constant dogfights between Spitfires and Me-109s. Britain’s very freedom depended on the outcome of that summer’s battle: Its air defenses were badly battered and nearly broken, but against all odds, “The Few,” as they came to be known, bought Britain’s freedommany with their lives. More than a fifth of the British and Allied pilots died during the Battle of Britain.
These are the personal accounts of the pilots who fought and survived that battle. Their stories are as riveting, as vivid, and as poignant as they were seventy years ago. We will not see their like again.
- Skyhorse Publishing
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- 6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.10(d)
Meet the Author
Max Arthur served with the RAF and is the United Kingdom’s foremost oral historian. He is the author of the bestselling Forgotten Voices of the Great War, Forgotten Voices of the Second World War, and Dambusters. He is also the military obituary writer for the Independent. He lives in England.
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One of best books I have ever read on the men who flew in early days of war. They were the finest.( I sat in the cockpit of a Spitfire fuselage that had been moved to the Museum of Science and Industry in Rockefeller Center in 1942. I was just a few years younger than the men who had flown this plane.) I was uncomfortable with testimonies from German pilots that the author seemed to equate with those of the RAF. The Germans flew to help Hitler achieve his goals. This war was not a soccer match. Had the Germans won the war in part through the efforts of the Luftwaffe, I and my family would have been gassed and cremated.