Churchill's Secret War: The British Empire and the Forgotten Indian Famine of World War II

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9780465002016: Churchill's Secret War: The British Empire and the Forgotten Indian Famine of World War II
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John Horgan, Director, Center for Science Writings, Stevens Institute of Technology "Churchill's Secret War is a major work of historical scholarship, which reveals that one of the 20th century's greatest heroes was also one of its greatest villains. Mukerjee's elegant, precise prose and meticulous research make her tale of colonial brutality all the more gripping and horrific." Kirkus "An important though uncomfortable lesson for readers who think they know the heroes and villains of World War II." Publishers Weekly ""[W]ell-researched...This gripping account of historical tragedy is a useful corrective to fashionable theories of benign imperial rule, arguing that a brutal rapaciousness was the very soul of the Raj." Providence Journal"A clearly written and well-researched study...Mukerjee writes with a careful hand, avoiding an easily dismissible rant and smartly allowing Churchill's closet advisors to color in the dark details." Roll Call"Mukerjee's work is an important tool in repudiating the dominant legacy of Churchill." Indian Express (India)

Reseña del editor:

A dogged enemy of Hitler, resolute ally of the Americans, and inspiring leader through World War II, Winston Churchill is venerated as one of the truly great statesmen of the last century. But while he has been widely extolled for numerous successes, parts of Churchill's record have gone woefully unexamined. As journalist Madhusree Mukerjee reveals, at the same time that Churchill brilliantly opposed the barbarism of the Nazis, he governed India with total contempt for native lives. A series of his decisions between 1940 and 1944 directly and inevitably - resulted in the deaths of some three million Indians. The streets of Indian cities were lined with corpses, yet instead of sending emergency food shipments Churchill used the wheat and ships at his disposal to build stockpiles for feeding postwar Britain and Europe. Combining close research with a vivid narrative and riveting accounts of personality and policy clashes within and without the British War Cabinet, Churchill's Secret War places this oft-overlooked tragedy into the larger context of the Second World War, India's fight for freedom and Churchill's enduring legacy. Winston Churchill may have found victory in Europe, but as this groundbreaking historical investigation reveals, his mismanagement - facilitated by dubious advice from scientist and eugenicist Lord Cherwell - devastated India, and ultimately set the stage for the massive bloodletting that accompanied independence

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