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I mean to record these events as I saw them...'I can promise to be upright but not to be unprejudiced'."" Thus Marshal of the Royal Air Force Lord Tedder, whose recall the publishers present as ""the last of the really great 1939-45 Memoirs."" After a distinguished peacetime career at the Air Armament School and in the Far East, he was brought back to head Research and Development in the pre-war period, then in 1940 sent to the Middle East as Deputy A.O.C. in C.; served as Air Commander-in-Chief of the Mediterranean. Following the invasion of Sicily and Italy, he became Allied Deputy Supreme Commander, directly responsible to Eisenhower and retained this position to the war's close. Tedder was an exponent of the complementary role of all three services, in particular the coordination and cooperation of air and ground forces. He is modest about his own role, assesses other leaders with candor, precision (of DeGaulle, ""I am bound to confess that I was not impressed by him:"" of Smits, ""incomparably the greatest man I ever met, possessing Churchill's versatility and vision without his vices""). Despite the close-in, high-up recall, and despite the ""prejudice,"" there is an uncolored control here that operates at a remove (of twenty-two years?) from current American concerns. A work of worth, certainly, but unlikely to command popular attention.

Pub Date: Aug. 23rd, 1967
Publisher: Little, Brown