Churchill’s Last Wartime Secret, The 1943 German Raid Airbrushed From History

The assumption that modern history is meticulously recorded and all 
records are open is false. This new book reviews a German special 
forces raid on the British Isles that was concealed for 70 years 
and even today depends primarily on German archived materials. A 
provoking review that exposes one of WWII's long held secrets. 
Great Reading.

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NAME: Churchill's Last Wartime Secret, The 1943 German Raid 
Airbrushed From History
FILE: R2423
AUTHOR:  Adrian Searle
PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword
BINDING: hard back 
PAGES:  180
PRICE: £19.99
GENRE: Non Fiction
SUBJECT: WWII, World War 2, World War II, Second World War, German 
Army, Special Forces, British Commandos, raiding, radar, technology
ISBN: 1-47382-381-1
IMAGE: B2423.jpg
BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.com/zs9uve5
LINKS: Current Discount Offers http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/sale 
DESCRIPTION: The assumption that modern history is meticulously 
recorded and all records are open is false. This new book reviews 
a German special forces raid on the British Isles that was concealed 
for 70 years and even today depends primarily on German archived 
materials. A provoking review that exposes one of WWII's long held 
secrets. Great Reading.

 During WWII in Europe, the over whelming bulk of special forces 
raids was by the Allies on Occupied Europe. Most of these raids were 
spectacularly successful, great for British morale and significant 
militarily and/or technically. In particular, the raids to capture 
German radar technology were not just morale boosters, but produced 
vital intelligence on which the massive Allied strategic bombing were 
based. The system of dropping commandos into Europe by parachute and 
glider, with extraction usually by submarine or Coastal Forces fast 
patrol boats, could as easily have been carried out in reverse by the 
Germans. They had similar resources and initially a much larger 
special forces establishment, mainly in the form of paratroopers.

The Germans did manage a daring and completely successful raid in 
Italy, when they rescued Mussolini from captivity, landing special 
forces by glider, having helicopters available and flying Mussolini 
out in a Storch light STOL aircraft. Logically, they could have 
carried out raids on the British Isles and it is something of a 
mystery why they did not. Had they carried out successful raids, the 
world would have known all about it because it would have been great 
propaganda. The author has covered one raid, but there are rumours 
that more were attempted, but proved unsuccessful and therefore of no 
propaganda value to the Germans.

This book covers one raid on the Isle of Wight in as much detail as 
is available. British records were sealed for 70 years and appear to 
have been less than a complete record. The German records also appear 
to have a number of gaps, but provide sufficient detail to make a 
credible review practical. The reality is that the Germans did destroy 
some records deliberately and others were lost as a result of bomb 
damage to archives. The British deliberately destroyed some records of 
covert operations in 1945 and one reason was that although the Labour 
politicians saw a bright future as allies to Stalin and happily shipped 
highly classified technology to the Soviet Union, the intelligence 
services were rather brighter and correctly saw Russia as the major 
threat to Britain for decades ahead. As a result, they destroyed records 
and concealed technology to prevent the Labour Party betraying it to 
the Soviets. That included a number of highly advanced electronic 
computers used at Bletchley Park which were smuggled to the new site at 
Cheltenham where they were used operationally up to the 1960s, breaking 
Soviet code and then continued in experimental use for a number of 
years more.

The real motives for the German raid on the Isle of Wight are open to 
debate. The radar installations there were unlikely to offer the same 
benefits that Britain gained from raiding German radar sites, not least 
that the Luftwaffe was unable to direct the same numbers of bombers 
against British targets and the real intelligence coup would have come 
from other British locations. The Isle of Wight was probably considered 
the most vulnerable location and the main reason for the raid was 
probably a tit for tat in response to regular British raids and capture 
of German technology.

British experience in raiding Europe had already produced a number of 
advisory papers on which Churchill had acted. This included moving 
research sites away from coastal areas and establishment of defensive 
forces to protect them specifically against attack by commandos, 
paratroopers and glider troops.

The author tells the dramatic story smoothly and there is good 
illustration, including a photo-plate section with some interesting 
images.