Victoria's Cross: The Untold Story of Britain's Highest Award for Bravery

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9781843542704: Victoria's Cross: The Untold Story of Britain's Highest Award for Bravery
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This controversial book, by one of the UK's finest military historians, reveals the squalid truth about Britain's highest military honor, exposing a shameful history of racism, misogyny, and political expediency. When 25-year old Private Johnson Beharry won the Victoria Cross in 2005 for bravery under fire in Iraq, he was the first person to win Britain's highest military honor since the Falklands war in 1982 and the first living recipient since 1969, when two Australians were given the award for action in Vietnam. Born out of the squalor of the Crimean War in 1856 and the fragility of the monarchy at that time, the VC's prestige is such that it takes precedence over all other orders and medals in Britain. But while many books have been written about specific aspects of the VC and its recipients, none have asked why so many brave men who deserved the medal were denied it, and why no women have ever been awarded the VC, even though they are entitled. Military historian Gary Mead's vivid and balanced account of the VC's life and times exposes the hypocrisy behind one of the UK's last sacred cows, and explores its role as a barometer for the shifting sands of political and social change during the last 150 years.

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About the Author:

Gary Mead was a journalist for the Financial Times for 10 years and has worked extensively for the BBC and Granada TV. He is the author of The Doughboys: America and the First World War and The Good Soldier.

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Mead pulls no punches in asserting that the kind of behaviour necessary to gain a VC today is not so much courage as "madness". -- Book of the Month * Military History Monthly * This book is not simply another collection of heroic VC stories. It is, rather, a critique of the criteria by which the medal is awarded, and its conclusions about the arbitrary nature of many VC awards are quite disturbing. -- Nigel Jones * Daily Telegraph * A thorough, cogent and almost unarguable case -- Allan Mallinson * Spectator * Victoria's Cross is a highly original, judicious book, which questions our long-held assumptions about Britain's highest honour. In beautifully lucid prose, Gary Mead reminds us of the complex background to the creation of the VC. More importantly, he reveals how this decoration, originally a means of recognizing exceptional individual gallantry, has, almost imperceptibly, come to be a potent political tool, far removed from its roots. This is a "must-read" book for anyone interested in military and social history. * Peter Hart * This highly revisionist, hard-hitting book will I predict be highly controversial. Yet no-one will deny Gary Mead's scholarship, deep research and ability to express an argument with lucidity and passion, as well as his readiness to name names. The Ministry of Defence must now listen to his arguments, and profoundly reform the way we reward - or more often fail to reward - our heroes * Andrew Roberts *

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9781843542698: The Victoria Cross: The Secret History of Britain's Highest Award for Bravery

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ISBN 10:  1843542692 ISBN 13:  9781843542698
Publisher: Atlantic Books, 2015
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Book Description ATLANTIC BOOKS, United Kingdom, 2016. Paperback. Condition: New. Main. Language: English . Brand New Book. When 25-year old Private Johnson Beharry won the Victoria Cross in 2005 for bravery under fire in Iraq, he was the first person to win Britain s highest military honour since the Falklands war in 1982 and the first living recipient since 1969, when two Australians were given the award for action in Vietnam. Born out of the squalor of the Crimean War in 1856 and the fragility of the monarchy at that time, the VC s prestige is such that it takes precedence over all other orders and medals in Britain. But while many books have been written about specific aspects of the VC and its recipients, none have asked why so many brave men who deserved the medal were denied it, and why no women have ever been awarded the VC, even though they are entitled. Military historian Gary Mead s vivid and balanced account of the VC s life and times exposes the hypocrisy behind one of the UK s last sacred cows, and explores its role as a barometer for the shifting sands of political and social change during the last 150 years. Seller Inventory # AA99781843542704

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Book Description ATLANTIC BOOKS, United Kingdom, 2016. Paperback. Condition: New. Main. Language: English . Brand New Book. When 25-year old Private Johnson Beharry won the Victoria Cross in 2005 for bravery under fire in Iraq, he was the first person to win Britain s highest military honour since the Falklands war in 1982 and the first living recipient since 1969, when two Australians were given the award for action in Vietnam. Born out of the squalor of the Crimean War in 1856 and the fragility of the monarchy at that time, the VC s prestige is such that it takes precedence over all other orders and medals in Britain. But while many books have been written about specific aspects of the VC and its recipients, none have asked why so many brave men who deserved the medal were denied it, and why no women have ever been awarded the VC, even though they are entitled. Military historian Gary Mead s vivid and balanced account of the VC s life and times exposes the hypocrisy behind one of the UK s last sacred cows, and explores its role as a barometer for the shifting sands of political and social change during the last 150 years. Seller Inventory # AA99781843542704

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Book Description Atlantic Books, 2016. Condition: New. This controversial book, by one of our finest military historians, reveals the squalid truth about Britain's highest military honour, exposing a shameful history of racism, misogyny and political expediency. Num Pages: 352 pages, 1 x 8 page plate section. BIC Classification: HBW; JWTY. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 199 x 129 x 27. Weight in Grams: 336. . 2016. Main. Paperback. . . . . . Seller Inventory # V9781843542704

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Book Description Atlantic Books. Condition: New. This controversial book, by one of our finest military historians, reveals the squalid truth about Britain's highest military honour, exposing a shameful history of racism, misogyny and political expediency. Num Pages: 352 pages, 1 x 8 page plate section. BIC Classification: HBW; JWTY. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 199 x 129 x 27. Weight in Grams: 336. . 2016. Main. Paperback. . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Seller Inventory # V9781843542704

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