From the critically acclaimed author whom The Wall Street Journal called “a first-class historian,” here is a riveting account of one of the most spectacular rescue operations in history. On January 30, 1945, American troops staged a successful raid on Cabanatuan, a notorious Japanese POW camp where thousands of prisoners had been tortured and died. Based on interviews with the heroes who survived the raid, this book brings to life in electrifying detail the dramatic events that took place on that historic day.
Praise for William B. Breuer and his books
“A first-class historian.” --The Wall Street Journal
“Fast-paced, detailed, and satisfyingly dramatic.” --World War II Magazine on Devil Boats
“Another smasher by Breuer, who specializes in thrilling reports of WWII spycraft and warfare.” --Kirkus Reviews on Race to the Moon
“Vivid . . . skillfully written.” --Los Angeles Times on Retaking the Philippines
“Brings to life how airborne soldiers survived, how the human will prevails . . . against overwhelming enemies, tactical failures, and even death.”--The New York Times on Geronimo: American Paratroopers in World War II
Early on the morning of January 28, 1945, a small detachment of volunteers under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Henry A. Mucci, leader of the 6th Ranger Battalion, embarked from their base in the Philippines on the most audacious rescue operation ever undertaken. Their objective: Penetrate thirty miles behind enemy lines and liberate 511 POWs from Cabanatuan, the notorious Japanese POW camp where thousands of American prisoners had been brutally tortured and killed. Little did Mucci's Rangers know when they got under way that morning that over the next few days and nights they would be making history.
Written by acclaimed military historian William B. Breuer, The Great Raid on Cabanatuan is a riveting account of that rescue mission and the gallant soldiers who carried it out against overwhelming odds. Based largely on interviews with the heroes who survived the operation, and featuring twenty-eight previously unpublished photographs--many of them taken while the raid was in progress--it brings to life in electrifying detail the dramatic events that took place on the night of the raid, January 30, and during the harrowing days that followed.
In sketching out the many roads that led to Cabanatuan, Breuer brilliantly combines oral history with dramatic narrative to bring to life some of the most spectacular events of the war in the Pacific. We relive the hellish battles for Bataan and Corregidor, where in 1942 American and Filipino soldiers fought bravely to hold back the Japanese invasion force. We experience firsthand the horrors of the Bataan Death March on which tens of thousands of prisoners lost their lives en route to Cabanatuan. And we learn of the American underground and guerilla operations in the Philippines during the Japanese occupation from the men and women behind them, including Margaret Utinsky, leader of “Miss U's underground,” and Claire Phillips, the glamorous lounge singer turned spy- master.
A gripping chronicle of one of the most harrowing rescue missions ever undertaken as told in all its gritty detail by the heroes who made it happen, The Great Raid on Cabanatuan is both a first-class piece of military scholarship and a thrilling adventure story.