"Ultra in the West: The Normandy Campaign of 1944-44" (used book)
Ultra in the West: The Normandy Campaign of 1944-44
by Ralph Bennett
About the Book
Used Book. Hardcover. Dust jacket included. Good Condition. Some discolouration from age.
-- From the dust jacket
The contribution of Ultra to victory is the last great untold story of World War II. What effect did the decoding of German wireless traffic at Bletchley Park have on the fighting? In this book, Ralph Bennett reconstructs for the first time the campaign for the liberation of Europe from the 25,000 or more signals, which were based on Bletchley decodes.
At every point from the Normandy landings to the German surrender eleven months later, Ultra in the West offers a unique analysis. It shows, for instance, how Montgomery was able to note the astonishing success of the deception plan, which kept men and tanks away from his front in the dangerous early days of the build-up and held them idle round Calais, waiting for an assault the Allied Command never intended to make. It shows how, later on, Montgomery could watch every stage of the gradual concentration of German armour round Caen and received enough warning of the arrival of two crack SS Panzer divisions from the Russian front to bring them to a dead stop the moment they attacked. On the other flank Bradley knew, before he gave the order to break through the German lines at Avranches and begin the great envelopment, that the enemy commanders themselves realized how much American fire-power had eroded their capacity to resist and how little opposition Patton’s drive up the Loire valley would meet.
And all along the front and day by day throughout the campaign, the movements, strength and intentions of the Luftwaffe were relentlessly logged for the benefit of the Allied air commanders.
Later chapters are more controversial. Ralph Bennett shows how Ultra gave warning that substantial elements of two Panzer divisions were quartered round Arnhem ten days before the air-landings of Operation Market Garden. He explains why the very considerable evidence of German concentrations opposite the lightly-held Ardennes front in November and December 1944 should have been read as preparation for attack instead of being dismissed as merely defensive. The revelation that the uncomfortable surprises the Allies received on these two occasions could have been avoided will certainly make necessary a reappraisal of the conduct of the war.