Advocating Overlord: The D-Day Strategy and the Atomic Bomb offers a fresh look at the story of how in 1943 Great Britain and the United States struggled to craft and agree on strategy to liberate Europe from the west. Their choice was Operation Overlord, a violent thrust across northwestern Europe into the Nazi citadel that would begin with the Normandy landings, D-Day, on June 6, 1944. If, like many people, you think you understand arrival at that historical decision, Advocating Overlord is likely to inform and surprise you.
New, and based on eight years of research, is the book’s narrative enfolding an entirely separate, equally difficult, but concurrent negotiation: whether to allow British scientists back into the project to develop an atomic bomb from which they had been excluded by the Americans in 1942. Month by month in 1943, the two negotiations moved into ever closer proximity, something evident to only a very few at the top who had the “need to know.” Advocating Overlord is the first book-length examination of the likelihood that, from this convergence, a quid pro quo emerged: Churchill’s reluctant acceptance of the Overlord strategy and Roosevelt’s response to him within hours to reopen the Manhattan Project to the British.
Absent from past histories of how the Allies agreed to Operation Overlord, the view that negotiation of Allied military strategy and Anglo-American atomic cooperation became linked is controversial. Click on ABOUT THE BOOK, to read more about this tense, many-faceted story and why the atomic aspect might not have been considered decades sooner by most historians .
From this home page, you can click to watch a book talk that I was privileged to give at the World War II Roundtable in Minneapolis-Saint Paul (use the YouTube link that comes up). For a sample of the text, you can click in to READ THE PROLOGUE. Questions frequently asked of me at book talks are answered in FAQS. Reactions from historians who read the manuscript are to be found at PRAISE FOR. Advanced notice for book talks and festivals where I will be is in EVENTS. I describe some of these, as well as thought on current developments that touch on this history, in my BLOG, which I invite you to join. Of course, there are links to booksellers to BUY THE BOOK which I hope you will do. Feedback is much appreciated and I love the interaction that arises during talks about Advocating Overlord. If you have a question or comment or would like to arrange a talk for a group, please feel free to reach me by using the CONTACT button.
Thanks for your interest in Advocating Overlord. I do have a sequel in preparation, despite formidable, pandemic-imposed barriers to research. Once Overlord's advocates had won approval for their strategy, they had to sit down and ask each other, on a deadline, "Okay, how are we really going to do this?"
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