Target Switzerland: Swiss Armed Neutrality in World War II

Overview

Countless books have been written on the military history of World War II, however astonishingly little information has appeared about the one country that stared the Nazis down and refused to become an accomplice to the horrors of the Third Reich. This book provides an objective, year-by-year account of Switzerland's military role in World War II, including her defensive strategies, details of Nazi invasion plans, and Switzerland's moral, material and humanitarian links to the Allies. Swiss neutrality in World ...

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Overview

Countless books have been written on the military history of World War II, however astonishingly little information has appeared about the one country that stared the Nazis down and refused to become an accomplice to the horrors of the Third Reich. This book provides an objective, year-by-year account of Switzerland's military role in World War II, including her defensive strategies, details of Nazi invasion plans, and Switzerland's moral, material and humanitarian links to the Allies. Swiss neutrality in World War II has been criticized in recent years, but the country was entirely surrounded by Axis powers and managed, as revealed here, to render considerable assistance to the Allies.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The recent focus on Swiss accommodations to the Third Reich has obscured the facts surrounding Switzerland's success in deterring Nazi invasion, argues Halbrook in this narrative of Switzerland's preparations for armed resistance during WWII. Concessions on commercial or refugee issues, Halbrook contends, were not enough by themselves to fend off one of history's most ruthless dictatorships. What was decisive, he finds, was Swiss determination to defend itself by an armed force based on armed citizens. In contrast to Holland, Denmark or Norway, Switzerland during WWII successfully maintained its neutrality. It did so, argues Halbrook, by convincing Nazi Germany and its own citizens that any invader would pay in blood for every foot of ground, and in the end would find only devastation. Halbrook, a practicing attorney rather than an academic scholar, relies primarily on journalistic sources to make the points that Switzerland was prepared to abandon most of the country and fight to the last man from an Alpine redoubt. Among other questionable premises he accepts uncritically, he takes as given that militiamen armed primarily with bolt-action rifles and 50 rounds of ammunition constituted an effective fighting force in an age of mechanized war. His account, while written from a limited vantage point, nevertheless establishes a series of elements in danger of being submerged by the recent furor over bank accounts and trade figures. 16 pages of photos not seen by PW. (July)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781885119537
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press
  • Publication date: 6/21/1998
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.33 (w) x 9.34 (h) x 1.29 (d)

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2004

    Ok, but I have a more factual book

    An okay book, I'm sure, but perhaps the only reason Switzerland was able to keep their country was because they helped the Nazis. A recommended book for research: Hitler's Secret Bankers by Adam Lebor So get that also if you're researching Switzerland.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2000

    Insight into Switzerland During WWII

    I enjoyed this book very much, especially prior to my trip to Switzerland. I didn't know much about Switzerland or how it handled the situation in World War II, especially from their perspective. I felt the book provided a good balance of military, national and political history which laid the foundation for the end result - a small, neutral territory that survived a war that only 'superpowers' were able to stop. For perspective, understanding and insight into the Swiss during the war it is a very good book.

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