Download Britain, Mihailovic and the Chetniks, 1941-42 by Simon C. Trew PDF

By Simon C. Trew

Casting new mild on a debatable element of wartime British international coverage, this ebook lines the method during which the British specialists got here to supply their backing to Colonel Draza Mihailovic, chief of the non-Communist resistance circulate which emerged after the Axis invasion of Yugoslavia in April 1941. It additionally examines why British self assurance in Mihailovic used to be hence eroded, to the purpose the place critical attention used to be given to moving aid to his avowed enemies, the Communist-led Partisans.

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Extra info for Britain, Mihailovic and the Chetniks, 1941-42

Sample text

Other transfers of staff included George Taylor returning to London in early August to become Nelson's Chief of Staff on operational matters, and Arthur Goodwill following soon after to assume control of the Balkan and Middle East section of SO 2 in London. Despite its increased staff and resources, SO 2's work was now hampered by the increasingly nervous Yugoslav authorities. Many of SO 2's friends in official positions or the newspapers found themselves sacked or transferred, while the police clamped down on illegal activities.

The discovery of one particular intrigue in June 1942 led Ralph Murray, PWE's Balkans expert (and previously SO l's) to write with exasperation: Is it in the charter of SOE to indulge in this amateur political mystery-making independentiy? Are they absolutely incapable of ever cooperating with any department in particular? We do our best to put everything at their disposal and to take them as far as possible into our confidence, and we receive in return intrigues 28 Britain, Mihailovic and the Chetniks and obstruction and cut-throat competition in respect of the Middle East, and this political irresponsibility on our very doorstep.

This situation was the inevitable by-product of the fact that although SOE's general role had been established by its charter, its precise position in the hierarchy of wartime organisations was not. Thus it found itself reporting to and being advised by a wide range of committees, all of whom, with some justification, saw SOE's work as directly related to their own. SOE's problems were manifold. The energy and optimism of its members was admirable, but was not equalled by their actual ability to 'set Europe ablaze'.

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