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The Gardeners of Salonika

The Gardeners of Salonika' as Clemenceau contemptuously labelled them, could well be called the forgotten army of the First World War. Yet the Macedonian Campaign was, in Lord Hankey's words, 'the most controversial of all the so-called sideshows.' extraordinary polyglot army - it included, at various times, contingents from seven countries - from the first landing at Salonika (Thessaloniki) in 1915 to the peace in 1918; at the same time it deals with the political and strategic background: the ceaseless argument in London and Paris over the future of the Salonika army, the maze of Greek politics in which the army and its commanders became involved and in particular the personalities of two remarkable French officers who commanded the the army, General Sarrail and Marshal Franchet d'Esperey. It concludes with an account of the offensive in September 1918 when, as Churchill later wrote, 'The controversies were silenced by the remarkable fact that it was upon this much abused front that the final collapse of the Central Empires first began!' this book 'the best study of the Macedonian Front in English.' It was well received on first publication, too: has taken an apparently unpromising story and made a book of high interest about it.' A. J. P. Taylor, The Observer account of this, the most controversial and neglected sideshow of them all.' The Guardian a story from which no one emerges with credit, except the troops who were its victims.' New Statesman but also an enthralling book.; Barrie Pitt, Sunday Times
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About the Author

Alan Palmer was head of History at Highgate School, London for nineteen years before retiring early to concentrate on historical writing and research. He is the author of more than three dozen works: narrative histories; biographies; historical dictionaries ir reference books. His main interests are in the Napoleonic era, nineteenth century diplomacy, the First World War and Eastern Europe, although his Northern Shores is a history of the Baltic Sea and its peoples from earliest times to 2004. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1980. Of Alan Palmer, Sir John Keegan has written, ' Alan Palmer writes the sort of history that dons did before "accessible" became an academic insult. It is cool, rational, scholarly, literate.' Faber Finds is reissuing a number of his titles: Alexander I, The Gardeners of Salonika, The Chancelleries of Europe, The East End, The Decline and Fall of the Ottoman Empire, The Lands Between, Metternich, Twilight of the Habsburgs.

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