In the tradition of In Patagonia and Great Plains, Michael Meyer´s In Manchuria is a scintillating combination of memoir, contemporary reporting, and historical research, presenting a unique profile of China´s legendary northeast territory. For three years Meyer rented a home in the rice-farming community of Wasteland, hometown of his wife´s family, and their personal saga mirrors the tremendous change most of rural China is undergoing in the form of a privately held rice company that has built new roads, introduced organic farming, and constructed high-rise apartments into which farmers can move in exchange for their land rights. Once a commune, Wasteland is now a company town, a phenomenon happening across China that Meyer documents for the first time; indeed, not since Pearl Buck wrote The Good Earth has anyone brought rural China to life as Meyer has here. Amplifying the story of family and Wasteland, Meyer takes us on a journey across Manchuria´s past, a history that explains much about contemporary China, from the fall of the last emperor to Japanese occupation and Communist victory. Through vivid local characters, Meyer illuminates the remnants of the imperial Willow Palisade, Russian and Japanese colonial cities and railways, and the POW camp into which a young American sergeant parachuted to free survivors of the Bataan Death March. In Manchuria is a rich and original chronicle of contemporary China and its people. 1. Language: English. Narrator: George Backman. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/adbl/021255/bk_adbl_021255_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
In the warm predawn darkness of June 22, 1941, three million men waited along a front hundreds of miles long, stretching from the Baltic coast of Poland to the Balkans. Ahead of them in the darkness lay the Soviet Union, its border guarded by millions of Red Army troops echeloned deep throughout the huge spaces of Russia. This massive gathering of Wehrmacht soldiers from Adolf Hitler´s Third Reich and his allied states - notably Hungary and Romania - stood poised to carry out Operation Barbarossa, Hitler´s surprise attack against the country of his putative ally, Soviet dictator Josef Stalin. The Soviets were so caught by surprise at the start of the attack that the Germans were able to push several hundred miles into Russia across a front that stretched dozens of miles long, reaching the major cities of Leningrad and Sevastopol in just three months. The first major Russian city in their path was Minsk, which fell in only six days. In order to make clear his determination to win at all costs, Stalin had the three men in charge of the troops defending Minsk executed for their failure to hold their position. This move, along with unspeakable atrocities by the German soldiers against the people of Minsk, solidified the Soviet will. In the future, Russian soldiers would fight to the death rather than surrender, and in July, Stalin exhorted the nation, ´´It is time to finish retreating. Not one step back! Such should now be our main slogan. ... Henceforth the solid law of discipline for each commander, Red Army soldier, and commissar should be the requirement - not a single step back without order from higher command.´´ Backed by extremely shrewd and professionally executed logistics arrangements based on rapidly-advanced railways, Army Group Center plunged forward through Minsk, then Smolensk, like an arrow aimed at Moscow, a crucial Soviet rail hub and manufacturing center. The Wehrmacht´s leadership initially tasked Army Groups North and South with g 1. Language: English. Narrator: Mark Norman. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/074452/bk_acx0_074452_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.