This well-researched study explores a virtually unknown and largely enigmatic aspect of World War IIthe nature of amphibious operations in the Aegean Sea in 1943. More than an historical account, it is designed to interpret and reassess the crucial decisions which influenced the outcome of what has become known as the Dodecanese Disaster. The British operations in the Aegean at that time present many parallels with the recent conflict in the Falklands in terms of scale and order of battle, the critical difference being that operations in the Aegean resulted in tragic failure.
The author leads the reader through a web of intrigue, incompetence, fantasy, and cover-up to find the truth. He vividly portrays the tensions between American and British perspectives in the strategy for the war against Germany.
About the Author
JEFFREY HOLLAND is a member of the family that founded Holland & Holland, the gunmakers. In World War II he served in France, Malta, the Dodecanese, and Germany and was mentioned in dispatches for gallantry on the island of Leros. He is a member of the Special Air Service Regiment and the Special Forces Club.
Table of Contents
Part I: Strategic Objectives
The Dodecanese: Geo-Political Profile
Strategy-Straws in the Wind
Plans for Accolade
The Turkish Card
Cover and Deception
Conclusions on the Aegean Venture
Press Reports 1943
Part II: Operational Perspectives
Air Forces in the Aegean
Naval Operations in the Aegean
The Army: The Battle for Kos
The Battle for Leros
Part III: Reflections
Combat Readiness: For Whom the Bell Tolls
Battle Casualties: Kos and Leros
Honors and Awards
Part IV: Appendices