At a time when Britain stood alone there was one shining light in North Africa.
Richard O'Conner's Operation Compass was on the cusp of capturing the whole of North Africa, before his troops were diverted to Greece. His stunning victories in 1940/41 are now rarely remembered.
Mark Buehner and I discuss O'Conner's career.
Parcels delivered by the International Red Cross proved to be a lifeline for many Prisoners of War. These were guaranteed by the Geneva Convention of 1929 providing PoWs with tobacco, food and some hygiene products. For many they supplemented the meagre rations provided by their captors.
Remarkably these parcels were shipped all round the world, they crossed war zones and a complex operation that ensured they got through.
In this episode I'm joined by Mark Webster.
Mark has written two books on the subject from the perspective of New Zealand, a country who had 1 in 200 of its population held as PoWs. As a result New Zealand would pack, by hand one parcel for every 1.7 of its population and ship them halfway round the world mainly to European camps.
Parcels From Home and Parcels From Home: Trainspotter Edition by Mark Webster and Paul Luker are available from the Apple iBook Store.