Naval Warfare Books

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Flag 4

The Battle of Coastal Forces in the Mediterranean 1939-1945

By Pope, Dudley
1999, Duckworth
ISBN 1861760671

Descripton: Flag 4 is the signal for "attack with torpedoes," and this book offers a thrilling account of the actions of British motor torpedo boats in the Mediterranean during World War II. The smallest fighting ships of the Royal Navy, these torpedo boats could fight in the shallowest waters, penetrate minefields, and hide in the inlets of enemy-held islands. From 1940 to 1943 they were the only surface craft continually able to seek out and attack Axis forces. Filled with action backed by telling details, the book describes night assaults on enemy convoys, clandestine operations, and Special Boat Squadron missions in North Africa and Yugoslavia. It is based on the eyewitness accounts of the officers and men who served in these perilous actions. Author Dudley Pope also looks at the question of why both the Allies and Axis forces fought so hard for what were mostly just large expanses of sand and water. Pope’s vivid writing style, reminiscent of his popular novels, will appeal to general readers as well as students of World War II naval actions.