Called "sure and graceful" by the Washington Star, renowned biographer and historian Sir Martin Gilbert’s study of Britain’s interwar appeasement strategy digs into the political and social context of British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s much-discussed and dissected foreign policy with nuance and intelligence.
World War II and its attendant horrors arguably began in the British policy of appeasement of the Nazi rise to power between the First and Second World Wars.In this compelling telling, Martin Gilbert walks the reader through several decades of behavior that, in retrospect, is hard to accept. Gilbert’s incisive focus on primary sources uncovers the real reasons for the appeasement policy, from the search for a just peace to attempts to avoid another war at all costs—illuminating the historical underpinnings of a fatally flawed policy, and its tragic consequences for the Jewish people.The book also contains a chronology of appeasement policy as well as five specially drawn maps and five appendices—including a transcript of British statesman and politician David Lloyd George's conversation with Hitler at Berchtesgaden in 1936.
Sir Martin Gilbert (1936-2015) was a leading British historian and the author of more than eighty books. Specializing in 20th century history, he was the official biographer of Winston Churchill and wrote a best-selling eight-volume biography of the war leader’s life.Born in London in 1936, Martin Gilbert was evacuated to Canada with his family at the beginning of World War II as part of the British government’s efforts to protect children from the brutal bombings of the Luftwaffe. He was made a Fellow of Merton College, Oxford, in 1962. He is the author of several definitive historical works examining the Holocaust, the First and Second World Wars, and the history of the 20th century.In 1990, Gilbert was designated a Commander of the Order of the British Empire, and was awarded a Knighthood in 1995. Oxford University awarded him a Doctorate in 1999. Gilbert was a sought-after speaker on Churchill, Jewish history, and the history of the 20th century, and traveled frequently to lecture at colleges, universities, and organizations around the world.