Free history Kindle books for 19 Dec 13

The Cuban Missile Crisis: 13 Days that Brought the Cold War to the Brink

by Charles River Editors

*Includes pictures.

*Includes descriptions of the crisis written by important officials.

*Includes a bibliography for further reading.

*Includes a table of contents.

“For, in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal.” – President John F. Kennedy, June 1963

When young president John F. Kennedy came to power in 1961, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev was eager to test his mettle from the start, and Khrushchev’s belief that he could push the inexperienced American leader around grew in the wake of the Bay of Pigs fiasco and the inconclusive Vienna summit in June 1961 that left Kennedy complaining to his brother Bobby that Khrushchev was “like dealing with Dad. All give and no take.”

Given the events of the previous year, 1962 saw Khrushchev made his most decisive decision. Still questioning Kennedy’s resolve, and attempting to placate the concerns of Cuban leader Fidel Castro following the failed Bay of Pigs invasion, Khrushchev attempted to place medium range nuclear missiles in Cuba, just 90 miles off the coast of the United States. Though Castro warned him that the act would seem like an act of aggression to the Americans, Khrushchev insisted on moving the missiles in quietly, under the cover of darkness. These missiles could serve not only as a deterrent against any invasion of Cuba but also as the ultimate first-strike capability in the event of a nuclear war.

However, in October 1962, American spy planes discovered the Soviets were building nuclear missile sites in Cuba, and intelligence officials informed Kennedy of this on October 16th. It went without saying that nuclear missile sites located just miles off the coast of the American mainland posed a grave threat to the country, especially because missiles launched from Cuba would reach their targets in mere minutes. That would throw off important military balances in nuclear arms and locations that had previously ensured the Cold War stayed cold. Almost all senior American political figures agreed that the sites were offensive and needed to be removed, but how?

Ultimately, some of the biggest arguments during the crisis took place among members of the Kennedy administration and the military. Members of the U.S. Air Force wanted to take out the sites with bombing missions and launch a full-scale invasion of Cuba, but Kennedy and his brother feared that military action could ignite a full-scale escalation leading to nuclear war. Though he had previously taken aggressive stances on Cuba, Bobby was one of the voices who opposed outright war and helped craft the eventual plan: a blockade of Cuba. That was the decision President Kennedy ultimately reached as well, but it remained to be seen whether Khrushchev would test Kennedy’s resolve yet again.

The Cuban Missile Crisis: 13 Days That Brought the Cold War to the Brink comprehensively covers the fateful days that brought the two superpowers closer to nuclear war than they had ever been before or would ever get again. The origins of the conflict, and the confidential manner in which the crisis was defused are also discussed. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about the Cuban Missile Crisis like never before, in no time at all.



The Greatest Battles in History: The Battle of the Bulge

by Charles River Editors

*Includes historic pictures of the fighting.

*Includes accounts of the fighting written by common soldiers and important generals.

*Includes pictures of important people, places, and events.

*Includes a bibliography for further reading.

*Includes a table of contents.

“We were across the Saar River in Dellingen, where the Battle of the Bulge started. That was where Axis Sally told us about the Bulge. The Germans had a loud speaker back in the woods and she was talking on that. They played a few American records first. I don’t remember everything she said. She said, â??Your wives and girlfriends are probably home in a nice warm building, dancing with some other men. You’re over here in the cold.'” – Dent Wheeler

After the successful amphibious invasion on D-Day in June 1944, the Allies began racing east toward Germany and liberating France along the way. The Allies had landed along a 50 mile stretch of French coast, and despite suffering 8,000 casualties on D-Day, over 100,000 still began the march across the western portion of the continent. By the end of August 1944, the German Army in France was shattered, with 200,000 killed or wounded and a further 200,000 captured. However, Adolf Hitler reacted to the news of invasion with glee, figuring it would give the Germans a chance to destroy the Allied armies that had water to their backs. As he put it, “The news couldn’t be better. We have them where we can destroy them.”

While that sounds delusional in retrospect, it was Hitler’s belief that by splitting the Allied march across Europe in their drive toward Germany, he could cause the collapse of the enemy armies and cut off their supply lines. Part of Hitler’s confidence came as a result of underestimating American resolve, but with the Soviets racing toward Berlin from the east, this final offensive would truly be the last gasp of the German war machine, and the month long campaign was fought over a large area of the Ardenne Forest, through France, Belgium and parts of Luxembourg. From an Allied point of view, the operations were commonly referred to as the Ardennes Offensive, while the German code phrase for the operation was Unternehmen Wacht am Rhein (“Operation Watch on the Rhine”), with the initial breakout going under the name of “Operation Mist.” Today, Americans know it best as the Battle of the Bulge.

Regardless of the term for it, and despite how desperate the Germans were, the Battle of the Bulge was a massive attack against primarily American forces that inflicted an estimated 100,000 American casualties, the worst American losses in any battle of the war, However, while the German forces did succeed in bending, and at some points even breaking through Allied lines (thus causing the “bulge” reflected in the moniker), the Germans ultimately failed. As Winston Churchill himself said of the battle, “This is undoubtedly the greatest American battle of the war, and will, I believe be regarded as an ever famous American victory.”

After resisting the German attack, the Allied armies began advancing, and with that, the race to Berlin was truly on, with the Allied armies in Western Europe desperate to reach the German capital before Stalin’s Soviets could arrive from the east. Less than 2 months after the Battle of the Bulge ended, Allied armies entered Germany, and by early May, Hitler would be dead in his bunker and the war in Europe would be over.

The Greatest Battles in History: The Battle of the Bulge comprehensively covers the entire military situation that led up to the battle, analyzes the decisions made by the battle’s most important leaders, and explains the aftermath of the Allied victory. Along with a bibliography and pictures of important people and places, you will learn about the Bulge like you never have before, in no time at all.



Attrition: The Great War on the Western Front – 1916

by Robin Neillands

1916. The year that a new word entered the military lexicon.

The war of Attrition.

At the start of 1916, the outlook was the Franco-British Armies on the Western Front.

They were getting the men and guns they needed. New technology in the shape of tanks and aircraft was about to appear and, after more than a year of fighting what amounted to private wars, the Entente Powers (Britain, France, Italy and their allies) were about to mount a number of co-ordinated offensives against the German and Austrian Armies, culminating in the Big Push – a joint Anglo-French offensive astride the Somme.

But then, unfortunately for the Allies, the Germans struck first, at Verdun.

By New Years Day, 1916, the fighting on the Western Front had cost some two million lives – by the end of the year it had risen to four million men and the territorial gains had been negligible.

Focusing on this crucial year, Neillands examines the actions of the principal commanders as they sought a way to win the war and opted for the deadly doctrine of attrition: the notion that it was only possible to win by killing a vast number of soldiers.

The soldiers, German, French, British, Canadian, Australian, died in their hundreds of thousands at Verdun, along the Ancre and on the Pozieres ridge in the muddy fields above the Somme.

A controversial and compelling text, ‘Attrition’ points at the failure of the high command to realise that until new offensive technology was invented to overcome the bias of defensive technology, the death toll could only rise, and asks why no system of Supreme Command was set up to handle the strategic direction of the war.

Although 1916 did see some Allied success – the French held Verdun against the German assault, the British introduced the tank – when that fatal year ended, victory and peace were as far away as ever â?¦ and another two million lives had been lost.

Praise for Robin Neillands:

â??One of Britain’s most readable historians’ – Birmingham Post

â??Immensely readable â?¦ a blast of fresh air’ – The Spectator

â??Informed and explicit, this is military history at its best’ – Western Daily Press

â??Neilland’s willingness to call a spade a spade will catch the popular imagination. His central argument is hard to fault’ – Literary Review

Robin Neillands is the author of several acclaimed works on the First World War including â??The Old Contempibles: The British Expeditionary Force, 1914′, â??The Great War Generals on the Western Front’ and â??The Death of Glory’.

Endeavour Press is the UK’s leading independent publisher of digital books.



Betty McIntosh: OSS Spy Girl [Article]

by Linda McCarthy

In this 23-page article, meet OSS veteran, Elizabeth “Betty” McIntosh, recently selected a 2012 Virginia Women in History honoree. Sponsored annually by the Library of Virginia, the Virginia Women in History program highlights eight exceptional Old Dominion females, whose achievements span generational, societal, and occupational boundaries.

McIntosh was chosen for the distinction because of her work as an intelligence agent with the World War II-era Office of Strategic Services.

Throughout its three-year existence, a vibrancy and sense of purpose permeated the OSS, considered America’s first centralized intelligence agency. This “can-do” attitude, along with the achievements and innovations fostered by OSS personnel, stands as a model and inspiration for 21st-century homeland security organizations.

Always the mastermind and innovator, OSS director Major General William J. Donovan guided his upstart spy network with the same charisma and daring that earned him the Medal of Honor in World War I. Men and women from diverse social backgrounds, cultural identities, and political persuasions eagerly enlisted in the OSS. Many were handpicked for the special service by the General himself. All, like Donovan, were “thinking outside the box” long before the phrase became popular to the point of trivial.

At its peak in late 1944, OSS employed almost 13,000 men and women, from both military and civilian backgrounds. Of this number, some 4,500 were women, with only 900 total serving in overseas postings.

Betty McIntosh was one of those select 900. After enduring intense physical training and psychological testing, she was assigned to the stranger than strange OSS Morale Operations Branch. A precursor to modern-day Psy Ops, MO devised head games targeting the enemy’s individual and collective esprit and élan. Using their wits and wiles, MO employees concocted some of the oddestâ??and most productiveâ??missions of the war.

McIntosh spent her OSS career in the China-Burma-India Theater. While in China, she was responsible for creating a variety of propaganda and counterintelligence documents, a process that was helped along by her knowledge of Japanese.

After the war, McIntosh wrote a memoir of her OSS experiences, published in 1947 as Undercover Girl. She also authored two children’s books, Inki (1957) and Palace under the Sea (1959). Her seminal work, Sisterhood of Spies: Women of the OSS (1998), describes the adventures of the brave women who served “in the shadows” during World War II.

Linda McCarthy, 24-year veteran of the CIA, is recognized internationally as an expert on espionage and espionage history. During her tenure as founding curator of the CIA Museum, Linda received an “Emmy” for “outstanding research” from NBC News for her work on a two-part story about the professional baseball player turned OSS spy, Morris “Moe” Berg.

As president and co-founder of History is a Hoot, Inc., Linda speaks before an array of audiences nationwide. She artfully combines scholarly and inspirational accounts about many of the more overlooked elements of Americana. These fascinating events and dedicated men and women who lived them helped forge our nation into the international power it is today. (Article 4,800 words).



The Death of Nature – The Radical Ecological Attack Upon Science, Capitalism and the Civilization of the West

by Matt Buttsworth

The idea that before the birth of modern science and the growth of European capitalism in the 16th century people lived in harmony with nature in self-sufficient agricultural communities is a powerful myth in the modern ecological movement and is used to attack modern science, capitalism and the international transport of food.
However it is a myth. In this damning critique Dr Matt Buttsworth attacks this strongly held, widespread idealisation of the past.
Before the 17th century, people did not live in harmony with nature; international trade in valuable products was widespread as were poverty, starvation, exploitation and ecological destruction and living standards and improving longevity only appeared with the scientific/technological and economic revolutions that created the modern world.
This extended article is essential reading for those who wish to understand the reality of how people lived before the birth of the modern world, and how fallacious is the Green ecological mythologizing of the past.

The Death of Nature is part of Eden and the Fall which is also available at Amazon.com



Across the China Sky (Daughter of China Series)

by C. Hope Flinchbaugh

In this sequel to Daughter of China, author C. Hope Flinchbaugh again opens a window on the shocking struggles and inspiring faith of Christians in the Chinese church. What would you do if one of your church’s new and trusted converts befriended you, then lied and kidnapped you into an evil cult? Across the China Sky will take you to the edge of the cliff where Christian Chinese leaders actually made their decisionâ??and today, live with the consequences.



Hippie: Pictures and Information about Hippies

by Liz Fern

Borrow for FREE with Amazon Prime!

If you are interested in United States history you will be interested in knowing about the 1960s. During the 60s a subset of US culture called the hippie emerged. If you would like to learn more about the hippie download this book today. You will find great information and fun pictures to give you the full picture.



#Tokyo45: The Final Days of World War II (Hashtag Histories)

by Philip Gibson

What if��..there had been Social Media during World War II?

The compelling story of the final days of World War II told in the form of Twitter feeds and actual statements by the main participants.

The story begins with the capture of the strategic Japanese island of Okinawa and follows the thoughts and actions of the main participants through planning the invasion of mainland Japan, the Japanese defense, the Manhattan Project, the first atomic test, the Kamikaze defense, the Potsdam Conference, Churchill’s election defeat, the decision to drop the atomic bombs, the attempted palace revolt and the eventual Japanese surrender.



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