Alone on Guadalcanal: A Coastwatcher's Story by Martin Clemens

By Martin Clemens

This striking memoir by means of the near-mythic British district officer and coastwatcher who assisted in shaping the 1st nice Allied counteroffensive within the Pacific struggle is a compelling actual event tale in keeping with a magazine Martin Clemens stored throughout the struggle. while, it could actually good be the final serious resource of research of the Solomons crusade. good-looking, articulate, and brave, the Scottish-born, Cambridge-educated Clemens controlled to outlive years in the back of jap traces in a single of the main unfriendly climates and terrains on this planet. After many partisan and secret agent missions, in 1942 he emerged from the jungle and built-in his Melanesian commando strength into the center of the first Marine Division's operations, incomes and the unfettered admiration of now-legendary Marine officials like Vandegrift, Thomas, Twining, Edson, and Pate. His specified viewpoint, fleshed out from unique diary entries, offers a revealing - now not constantly flattering - portrait of the Solomons crusade and the Marines who directed it.

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That same logic, once the Soviet Union had seized the military advantage, meant that foreign policy could only be pro- or anti-Soviet. Neutrality was not on the agenda. Moreover, the Soviet Union was to repeat at Yalta, with American and British agreement, that the future governments of central and eastern Europe would have to be governments ‘friendly’ to the Soviet Union so as to create what it saw as a ‘cordon sanitaire’ to protect it from any further attack from Germany. The Soviet Union’s definition of ‘friendly’ did not extend to cabinet ministers who had come to any form of accommodation with fascism, whether they had a popular mandate or not.

The future is open to differing interpretations. On the one hand, the process of dissolution may continue. As the Marxist historian E. J. Hobsbawm has caustically observed, ‘The eggs of Brest-Litovsk are still hatching’. Kosovo is the most immediately plausible candidate for independence, but it is not difficult to imagine others. This may or may not matter. If the EU or the CIS provides an environment within which small independent nations can thrive, then all may be well. The pressures for autonomy and independence are, after all, equally marked in western Europe, with the diminutive Faroe Islands being just the latest applicant for independence.

It was as disastrous for the state to harbour elements unwilling to play their allotted role as it was for the body to harbour malignant organisms. It was a concept which contrasted markedly with the individualism, pluralism and compromise inherent in liberal democracy, and even more with the Communist perception that loyalty was owed to social class rather than nation. It was not in itself an unworthy concept. It valued family loyalty, patriotism, responsibility and self-sacrifice. The practice, though not the theory, differed little from the dominance of the aristocracy and the gentry virtually everywhere in rural Europe in earlier centuries.

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