Black Hill Pictures Black Hill Pictures Kriegsmaschinen des 2. Weltkriegs - Die Luftwaffe (4 DVDs) Vom Krieg über dem Atlantik bis hin zur Operation Barbarossa
Vom Krieg über dem Atlantik bis hin zur Operation Barbarossa
The much-anticipated sequel to The German Aces Speak gives voice to four more of WWII´s most noteworthy German pilots. When The German Aces Speak was published in 2011, Air & Space/Smithsonian magazine welcomed Colin Heaton´s and Anne-Marie Lewis´ masterful command of interview-based narrative, writing, ´´[W]hat might have been numbing recitations of dogfights are instead vivid descriptions of life as a warrior during World War II.” Indeed, it is this unexpected perspective, brought to life by the authors´ neutrality and thoughtful research, that illuminates a side of war largely hidden from the American public: the experience of the German Luftwaffe pilot. In The German Aces Speak II, Heaton and Lewis paint a picture of the war through the eyes of four more of Germany´s most significant pilots - Johannes Steinhoff, Erich Alfred Hartmann, Guther Rall, and Dieter Hrabak - put together from numerous interviews personally conducted by Heaton from the 1980s through the 2000s. The four ex-Luftwaffe fighter aces bring the past to life as they tell their stories about the war, their battles, their off-duty lives, their lives after the war, and perhaps most importantly, how they felt about serving under the Nazi leadership of Hermann Göring and Adolf Hitler. Together, the memories of the events captured in The German Aces Speak II continue one of today´s most unique World War II series, unearthing a facet of the war that has gone widely overlooked for the American public. 1. Language: English. Narrator: P.J. Ochlan. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/tant/012369/bk_tant_012369_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
´´The passive resistance to war, in which we have acquitted ourselves so well, must come to an end.” (Prime Minister Winston Churchill) Europe’s attempts to appease Adolf Hitler, most notably at Munich in 1938, failed, as Nazi Germany swallowed up Austria and Czechoslovakia by 1939. Italy was on the march as well, invading Albania in April of 1939. The straw that broke the camel´s back, however, was Germany´s invasion of Poland on September 1 of that year. Two days later, France and Great Britain declared war on Germany, and World War II had begun in earnest. Of course, as most people now know, the invasion of Poland was merely the preface to the Nazi blitzkrieg of most of Western Europe, which would include Denmark, Belgium, and France by the summer of 1940. The resistance put up by these countries is often portrayed as weak, and the narrative is that the British stood alone in 1940 against the Nazi onslaught, defending the British Isles during the Battle of Britain and preventing a potential German invasion. At the beginning of 1941, it was unclear whether the Allies would be able to remain in the war for much longer. British Prime Minister Winston Churchill had already immortalized the men of the Royal Air Force with one of the West’s most famous war-time quotes, but the potential of a German invasion of Britain still loomed. With the comfort of hindsight, historians now suggest that the picture was actually more complex than that, but the Battle of Britain, fought throughout the summer and early autumn of 1940, was unquestionably epic in scope. The largest air campaign in history at the time, the vaunted Nazi Luftwaffe sought to smash the Royal Air Force, but thankfully, the RAF stood toe to toe with the Luftwaffe and ensured Hitler’s planned invasion was permanently put on hold. The Allied victory in the Battle of Britain inflicted a psychological and physical defeat on the Luftwaffe and Nazi regime at large, and as the l 1. Language: English. Narrator: Mark Norman. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/110686/bk_acx0_110686_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
The Painter is one woman’s remembrance of the days of her youth, spent in Bielefeld under the bombs of the Allied Air Forces in the final months of the war in Europe. After writing Until the Night, I had been looking for a way to start telling the other stories of the Bombing War in Europe. Until the Night was about the men in the bombers over Germany in the winter of 1943 to ´44; The Painter is about the experience of ordinary Germans under the bombs in the last winter of the war. The Painter is the first of a series of companion audiobooks to Until the Night in the Bomber War series. Future audiobooks will include prequels or sequels to Until the Night, but The Painter stands alone, unconnected other than in time and theme by the tragedy of that, thankfully, past age. History is history, but for it to ´´live´´, it needs to be experienced through the eyes and ears of ´´people´´, and it was not until I heard ´´The Painter´´, a beautifully elegiac song penned by Hannah Martin and performed in a concert by the duo Phillip Henry and Hannah Martin, that I discovered a way to speak to the nightmare of the closing months of the war in Europe. In her song, Hannah Martin encapsulates the stories told to her by her grandmother about her life as a young woman growing up in Bielefeld. In the terrible ´´big picture´´ of the bombing war, Bielefeld suffered less than many places in Germany. In the UK, we recall the trial by fire of Coventry in 1940; that city has become a leitmotif of the British experience of the blitz even though other towns and cities were as badly hit by the Luftwaffe. Bielefeld, a much smaller city than Coventry, its population swollen by slave labourers, suffered at least as many civilian casualties between September 1944 and VE-Day in April 1945. Although it was never subjected to a major ´´area bombing´´ raid by the RAF, the US Army Air Force repeatedly attack 1. Language: English. Narrator: Lesley Parkin. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/117156/bk_acx0_117156_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
My Luftwaffe is invincible.... And so now we turn to England. How long will this one last - two, three weeks? (Hermann Goering, June 1940) One of the most famous people in the world came to tour the city of Paris for the first time on June 28, 1940. Over the next three hours, he rode through the city´s streets, stopping to tour L´Opéra Paris. He rode down the Champs-Elysées toward the Trocadero and the Eiffel Tower, where he had his picture taken. After passing through the Arc de Triomphe, he toured the Pantheon and old medieval churches, though he did not manage to see the Louvre or the Palace of Justice. Heading back to the airport, he told his staff, ´´It was the dream of my life to be permitted to see Paris. I cannot say how happy I am to have that dream fulfilled today.´´ Four years after his tour, Adolf Hitler would order the city´s garrison commander, General Dietrich von Choltitz, to destroy Paris, warning his subordinate that the city ´´must not fall into the enemy´s hand except lying in complete debris.´´ Of course Paris was not destroyed before the Allies liberated it, but it would take more than four years for them to wrest control of France from Nazi Germany after they took the country by storm in about a month in 1940. That said, it´s widely overlooked today given how history played out that as the power of Nazi Germany grew alarmingly during the 1930s, the French sought means to defend their territory against the rising menace of the Thousand-Year Reich. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Christian Carvajal. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/039607/bk_acx0_039607_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.