Eastern Approaches

London: Jonathan Cape, 1956. Fifteenth Impression. Hardcover. 542, [2] pages. Previous owner's mailing and ink markouts on the fep. Publisher's book related ephemera laid in. Brigadier Sir Fitzroy Hew Royle Maclean, 1st Baronet, KT, CBE (11 March 1911 – 15 June 1996) was a British Army officer, writer and politician. He was a Unionist Member of Parliament (MP) from 1941 to 1974 and was one of only two men who during the Second World War enlisted in the British Army as a private and rose to the rank of brigadier, the other being future fellow Conservative MP Enoch Powell. Maclean wrote several books, including Eastern Approaches, in which he recounted three extraordinary series of adventures: traveling, often incognito, in Soviet Central Asia; fighting in the Western Desert campaign, where he specialized in commando raids behind enemy lines; and living rough with Josip Broz Tito and his Yugoslav Partisans while commanding the Maclean Mission there. It has been widely speculated that Ian Fleming used Maclean as one of his inspirations for James Bond. In 1934 Fitzroy Maclean was posted to the British Embassy in Paris. Bored with the pleasant but undemanding routine, he requested a posting to Moscow in 1937. The two and a half years he spent in the Soviet Union formed the first third of his best known book, the autobiographical Eastern Approaches. In North Africa in 1942, he distinguished himself in the early actions of the newly formed Special Air Service (SAS), where, with Ralph A. Bagnold, he developed ways of driving vehicles over the Libyan sand "seas". Churchill chose him to lead a liaison mission (Macmis) to central Yugoslavia in 1943. Eastern Approaches (1949) is a memoir of the early career of Fitzroy Maclean. Posted to Moscow as a young diplomat before the Second World War, Fitzroy Maclean traveled widely, with or without permission, in some of the wildest and remotest parts of the Soviet Union, then virtually closed to foreigners. In 1942 he fought as a founder member of the SAS in North Africa. There Maclean specialized in hair-raising commando raids behind enemy lines, including the daring and outrageous kidnapping of the German Consul in Axis-controlled Iraq. In 1943 he parachuted into German-occupied Yugoslavia as Winston Churchill's personal representative to Josip Broz Tito and remained there until 1945, all enemy attempts to capture him proving unsuccessful. Eastern Approaches is Maclean's classic, gripping account of the sybaritic delights of diplomatic life, the thrill of remote travel in the then-forbidden zones of Central Asia, and the violence and adventure of world-changing tours in North Africa and Yugoslavia. Maclean is the original British action hero and this is blistering reading. It is divided into three parts: his life as a junior diplomat in Moscow and his travels in the Soviet Union, especially the forbidden zones of Central Asia; his exploits in the British Army and SAS in the North Africa theater of war; and his time with Josip Broz Tito and the Partisans in Yugoslavia. This book contains many of the elements: remote travel, the delights of diplomatic life, violence and adventure. The American edition was titled Escape To Adventure, and was published a year later. The final and longest section of the book covers Maclean's time in and around Yugoslavia, from the late summer of 1943 to the formation of the united government in March 1945. The Yugoslav front, also known as the Yugoslav People's Liberation War, had become important to the Allies by 1943, although the Partisans had been fighting for two years without any help. He lived closely with Tito and his troops and had the ear of Churchill, and as such his recommendations shaped the Allies' policy towards Yugoslavia. Condition: Good / Fair.

Keywords: Commando, Special Air Service, SAS, Yugoslavia, Tito, Josip Broz, Diplomat, Central Asia, Commando, Partisans, WWII, Travel, Military Operations, Balkans, Soviet Union

[Book #87503]

Price: $45.00

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