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A Thousand Shall Fall by Murray Peden - perhaps the best Bomber Command book ever.

Discussion in 'Air War in Western Europe 1939 - 1945' started by Fred Wilson, Nov 23, 2010.

  1. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    A Thousand Shall Fall by Murray Peden
    By far and away, still the best book on any topic area I have read.
    The only book I have ever read back to back three times in a row without stopping.
    There are two subsequent editions released after the 1979 edition (and its 1981 reprint) that I own, I have ordered both. (The latest with "Official Secrecy Act" release updates.)

    Update November 26th:
    I have just received the first of the two later revisions that I've ordered (the book is that good.)

    Much to my delight, the book which arrived was the intervening one published in 1988.
    The book contains a handful of minor corrections when re-published in the soft cover version.
    Secondly, two USAAF heavyweights stepped in and requested permission to submit forwards to the new edition.
    a) General Robert Dixon, commanding general for five years of Tactical Air Command; and
    b) Lt. General Ira C. Eaker, Commander of the U.S. Eighth Air Force from October 1942 to January 1944.

    Setting aside that so many US aircrew trained in Canada, the book so well describes the universal experience of crew training and operational duties everywhere that they wanted to take the opportunity to express their appreciation of the book.

    It carries the highest recommendation of all:
    "I consider it not only the best and most true to life 'war' book I've read about this war, but the best about all the wars of my lifetime."
    - Marshall of the Royal Air Force, Sir Arthur Harris

    High accolades indeed.

    More here on the forum. http://www.ww2f.com/information-requests/15190-bomber-command.html

    I opened it up to look into the revisions and had completed well over a chapter before I could put it down again. Damn, what a magnificent book.

    I can not begin to tell you how much I am looking forward to reading the latest revision.
    I intend to have both books out side by side watching the wording of every single sentence.

    I have donated the original (which is full of notes by my dad and uncle who knew many, many of the people mentioned personally) to a new library I have donated at the Vernon BC Legion. Drop in sometime when you are here in Canada and enjoy!

    After months and months of no luck, the book is finally out in sufficient numbers again to be sold on Amazon. New and used are up for sale right now. Grab them quick. Trust me, its worth it, and please like me, donate it to your favorite local library when done.

    The 1988 version has been almost entirely released on Google Books. Enjoy!
    You will find about 75% of it there... but trust me, this is one you want to own and read in its entirety. It is worth every last penny and then some.
     
    Otto likes this.
  2. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    Absolutely agreed - Murray Peden's book is one of the literary classics of WWII. I say 'literary' because it's just so well written ; the author is qualified in the Arts and his book 'reads' so well.

    Unusual, too, in that Peden served in some of Bomber Command's less glamourous areas ; firstly on Stirlings and then, with the very 'hush-hush' 100 Group, on RAF B-17s. Truly a 'must-read'.....
     
  3. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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  4. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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  5. Ardent Escaper

    Ardent Escaper Member

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    Agreed; without question, this is a GREAT book.

    And I've had the great pleasure to speak and correspond with Mr. Peden over the past 6 months. He is a true gentleman, and one of my personal heroes.

    Marc
     
  6. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Thanks for letting me know this could be another present on my future Christmas list.
     
  7. TacticalTank

    TacticalTank Member

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    Good work it seems..... I'll check it out
     
  8. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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  9. John(txic)

    John(txic) recruit

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    I have had a copy of this book since it was first published here in England.

    Can you give me an idea of what is contained within the expanded versions you mention? I might just have to buy one if there's enough new material in it....


    John
     
  10. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    If you want to compare, I suggest inter-library loan. Wonderful book, but not worth purchasing a newer edition.

    The second version just corrected a dozen or so typo's or minor facts.

    The last edition just had a couple of items / pages appended at the end - this after the latest official secrecy act release.

    The memorable one was a statement released by Sir Arthur Harris regarding friendly fire bombing of Allied Troops after D-Day.
    The ground troops had been specifically ordered NOT to throw smoke for any reason on that day.
    Unfortunately one group not only threw smoke but inadvertently threw the identical smoke colors selected by the Pathfinders that day, drawing the main force of the allied bombing directly on themselves.

    NB:
    Most likely the incident attributed to Bradly / Patton's forces on July 24 / 25th during Operation Cobra.

    Published History had attributed the incident to a combination of:
    a) Allied Daylight Bomber Command's order to keep friendly troops at least 3,000 yards from the bomb line; Bradley compromised on a minimal distance of 1,200 yards; and
    b) the Allied Bombers were directed to fly parallel to the front line, but some flew perpendicular, thus the two front lines were separated by only 15 seconds on the bombing run.

    The articles I have come across attribute this incident to USAAF Bombers, so keeping the facts secret must have been meant to avoid further traumatizing the victims families. / Reopening old wounds.
     
  11. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u1TyFCRLqEM
     
  12. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rqIwErpB2zY
     
  13. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Ron Minchin talks about his days in WW11 piloting this heavy bomber.
    The Stirling was designed to ferry bombs into the Ruhr but as the war progressed it was used to tow gliders in the Arnhem offensive and on D-Day.
    Ron is a survivor and tells a remarkable tale of difficult times.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYYVGUXQ31I

    The Stirling On Parade

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZi7XIF2SbY
     
  14. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Good Stirling Bomber Footage

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRKnLO-HJu8

    Newsreel Introducing the Short Stirling Bomber

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m6QV7nQMm3w
     
  15. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Stirling Gills Animation Close up

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z2HD_tB2ys8


    Animation of the Stirling Bomber rear undercarriage screw drive operation

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iu9b5jYWvWI
     
  16. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Short Stirling - Start Up, Taxi, and Take Off Drill Manual.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9z8W-dtlL00

    Stirling Undercarriage Retraction Animation.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6pIn1OOILTE
     
  17. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Bump re: http://www.ww2f.com/topic/12938-interview/

    I've started my long promised A Thousand Shall Fall Screenplay.
    Book written by Captain Murray Peden of Winnipeg Manitoba.
    The only production crew I would pass this to is that of Foyle's War. Hope our member drops in and reads this.

    I thought it might be fun for us to do this as a team project here.
    We all hate and despise movies and TV Series that are not historically accurate. Right?
    So why not pool our talent and energy into one that is done perfecto?

    Are you in? Then read A Thousand Shall Fall, 90% is up in Google Books Preview. <== Link here.
    - So you have no excuses. K?

    Pick a chapter and write a segment for the movie or TV Episodes. Two TV Episodes on one chapter if necessary. K? Sounds like a fun project. Eh?

    If more than one person here makes a go at the same chapter, well then, it becomes a competition between you all. !!!!! Enjoy!

    The stated objective is to aim to win an "Oskar" or TV Award for EVERY SINGLE category.
    - Does that get your juices flowing?

    I am looking for veteran's quotes. RAF, RCAF, RAAF and RAFNZ only. K?
    Post them here please.

    There is one on WW2talk.com, a sig to a father his son never met.

    Peter Clare, on 11 Jan 2015 - 3:42 PM, said:
    For searchers of Foyles War

    Opening scene.
     
  18. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Opening Screen:
    Read A Thousand Shall Fall on your Kindle.​
    Screenplay: By Fred T. L. Wilson Vernon BC Canada - Line ID: FriedEd​
    Screen opens to an elderly man and woman walking down a forest path into the evening fog.​
    Music: “Inside Me” by Fred T. L. Wilson, Secretarial Duties in the Screenplay.​
    Fade to black.
    Fade to light, bombers flying into the evening Fog.​
    Fade to Black in evening fog, bombers still flying​
    Way off in the distant mist, one Bomber comes down in flames. Screen goes black.
    Light Blue words fall off screen: A Thousand Shall Fall –​
    Written by Captain Murrey Peden of No. 214 and [SIZE=12pt]No. 161 Squadron[/SIZE]s​
    [​IMG]
    Opening Credits - [SIZE=12.960000038146973px]including[/SIZE] a partial Wish List of Main Actors.
    - http://www.tvguide.com/shows/elementary-375404/episode-13-season-3/hemlock/
    Wing Commander: Brian George
    [SIZE=10pt]Squadron Commander: Michael Kitchen
    Squadron Adjucant: [/SIZE]Jacinto Taras Riddick
    Group Captain: Ben Livingston
    Squadron Leader and Pilot: Julian Ovenden
    Pilot, Murray Peden: Aidan Quinn
    Episode 6 and on Nurse: Honeysuckle Weeks
    Pilot: Jonny Lee Miller
    Pilot: Anthony Howell
    Flight Engineer: Jon Michael Hill
    Navigator: Raza Jaffrey

    - Focusing on youthful character actors that portray aircrew with very, very High IQ's.
    Book reviews. Bomber Harrrison.​
    "I consider it not only the best and most true to life 'war' book I've
    ever read about this war, but the best about all the wars of my lifetime"
    -Marshal of the Royal Air Force, Sir Arthur Harris.

    Fade in to:
    [​IMG]

    Ron Goldstein commented elsewhere, one of the most heartrending comments I have seen on this or any other forum below.
    Fade in:
    Alarge family reunion dinner, utensils clattering, random chats all around.
    [SIZE=12pt]This, from my, Ron Goldstein’s memoirs:
    http://www.ww2f.com/topic/51211-why-wwii/?hl=%2Bnorth+%2Bafrica#entry563649
    [/SIZE]

    From: The BBC WW2 People's War Archives, by [SIZE=12pt]Ron Goldstein[/SIZE]
    http://www.ww2f.com/topic/48913-the-bbc-ww2-peoples-war-archives-as-seen-by-ron/?hl=brother
    In abiding memory of a much loved brother
    Sgt.Air Gunner Jacob (Jack) Goldstein
    166 Squadron, Bomber Command, Kirmington
    Who died in the skies over Nuremberg on the night of the 16th March 1945.​
    Loss Record: http://lostaircraft.com/database.php?mode=viewentry&e=9050
    His Grave is at Durnbach, displaying, as it does, a British Legion poppy.
    My parents and Jack's family were inconsolable.​
    If I am not for myself, then who will be for me?
    And if I am only for myself, what am I?
    And if not now, when?
    Rabbi Hillel circa 30 BCE
    This, from his son's tribute to his father.
    BBC - WW2 People's War - The night my father was killed in action
    Jack’s son Michael, who, like many others of his generation, was to lose his father at the tender age of five, was later to become Vice Chancellor of Coventry University and was awarded the CBE for his services to Higher Education.

    Willie Tait, DSO and three bars; Murray Peden DFC; Bill Reid VC.

    [​IMG]

    - Stay tuned for more..
     
  19. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Start of Film

    The First of the 10,000 to fall.
    [SIZE=12pt]Sgt. (pilot) Albert Stanley Prince was the first Canadian combat casualty of the Second World War and the first of almost ten thousand[/SIZE] Canadians to be killed while serving with Bomber Command….

    [​IMG]

    Sgt. Prince of was the first Canadian combat casualty of the Second World War and the first of almost ten thousand Canadians to be killed while serving with Bomber Command was also the first Canadian to die in combat in any of the services.

    Sgt. Prince was based at Wattisham, Suffolk with RAF 107 Squadron equiiped with Bristol Blenheim IV N6240 OM-K..
    September 4, 1939 five crews took off at 16:00 hours with 500 pounders with 11.5 second delay fuses to attack at low level to minimize risk to civilians. Together with the other four crews from No. 107 Squadron, Sgt. Prince took off from RAF Wattisham to attack German "pocket" battleship Admiral Scheer, cruiser Emden, and other warships anchored at the German naval base at the entrance to Wilhelmshaven on Germany's north coast.

    http://www.bombercommandmuseum.ca/prince.html
    http://www.bombercommandmuseum.ca/photos/p_prince1.jpg
    http://www.ww2f.com/topic/52801-the-first-of-the-ten-thousand-to-fall/
    http://www.lostaircraft.com/database.php?lang=en&mode=viewentry&e=5579

    Film fades to back, in fog

    Film fades back in at Murray Peden's family l home, Murray receiving his notice of acceptance into Canadian Armed Forces.
    <SNIP>
     
  20. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Reminder:

    1. This is only the opening titles and scene for the film. (Many edits since I first posted it.)

    2. I am looking for other veteran's quotes of this quality. RAF, RCAF, RAAF and RAFNZ only. K?
    Post them here please.

    This for my long promised A Thousand Shall Fall Movie / TV Series Screenplay.
    Book written by Captain Murray Peden of Winnipeg Manitoba.
    The only production crew I would pass this to is that of Foyle's War. Hope our member drops in and reads this.

    More to come. Stay tuned.
     

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