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Military Monday with John D. Gresham

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The summer of 1940 was the high water mark of Adolf Hitler's conquests in Western Europe. Having taken everything between Warsaw and Paris in less than a year, only Great Britain stood alone against the might of the Nazi war machine. And then, history and legend tell us, a few hundred fighter pilots of the RAF's Fighter Command stopped the German Luftwaffe and stood as a shield between England and invasion. Prime Minister Winston Churchill declared it to be Great Britain's " Finest Hour," and so it has been in the lore of that country and the world.

The truth behind the Battle of Britain however, is somewhat more complex and less clear than most history books present it. Operation Sealion, the German plan to invade England, was very limited in scope and dependent upon a number of things going right. In particular, because of the potential strength of the Royal Navy against the German invasion forces, air supremacy over southern England was an absolute necessity for the Germans. And how all those factors mixed together is an intriguing story that is rarely told.

In commemoration of the 73rd anniversary of the Battle of Britain, and to learn more about this first great clash of air forces, join military historian, author and journalist John D. Gresham for Military Monday at 1 p.m. Eastern. His guest this week is noted aviation author and historian Barrett Tillman, who knew and interviewed many of the actual participants of the 1940 summer air campaign over England. Together they will go and spend the entire hour discussing the details of the battle, and some of the nuances that made it unique not only in the history of air power, warfare itself. Listeners are encouraged to call in to ask questions and offer opinions should they desire. And together we can all know a little bit more about "The Few...."

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