One of the most outstanding innovations of World War II was the inception of Combined Operation, a unit separate from the traditional branches of the British armed services, but requiring the detachment and leadership of Admirals, Generals, and Air Commanders. The original purpose of C. O. H. Q. was to ""initiate and execute raids, to interfere with German preparations for invasions and to symbolize defiance"". How this objective expanded and developed into a gigantic major organ encompassing Inter-Allied leadership, equipment and manpower also tells the story of the North African, Sicily and Normandy campaigns. Each step in the growth of Combined Operations is presented- from the unsuccessful raids of Dakar and the lessons learned at Madagascar and Deppe, to the adoptions of the Casablanca Conference and the coordinated intricacies that resulted in crucial Allied victories. Famous war heroes people the story, men like Mountbatten, Churchill, Marshall, Keyes, but interest is focused principally on the achievements of the Operation. An appendix of abbreviations and a complete Index conclude a most studious offering of the military of the second World War.