Lisbon by Neill Lochery
War in the Shadows of the City of Light, 1939-45

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Mr. Lochery skillfully documents the experiences of the rich and glamorous as well as the less fortunate and even sinister of the city's wartime arrivals...Distilling an enormous quantity of research, he has rendered a fascinating and readable account of this small country's role in World War II, protected, as it was, by its wily champion.
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Synopsis

Lisbon had a pivotal role in the history of World War II, though not a gun was fired there. The only European city in which both the Allies and the Axis power operated openly, it was temporary home to much of Europe’s exiled royalty, over one million refugees seeking passage to the U.S., and a host of spies, secret police, captains of industry, bankers, prominent Jews, writers and artists, escaped POWs, and black marketeers. An operations officer writing in 1944 described the daily scene at Lisbon’s airport as being like the movie “Casablanca,” times twenty.

In this riveting narrative, renowned historian Neill Lochery draws on his relationships with high-level Portuguese contacts, access to records recently uncovered from Portuguese secret police and banking archives, and other unpublished documents to offer a revelatory portrait of the War’s back stage. And he tells the story of how Portugal, a relatively poor European country trying frantically to remain neutral amidst extraordinary pressures, survived the war not only physically intact but significantly wealthier. The country’s emergence as a prosperous European Union nation would be financed in part, it turns out, by a cache of Nazi gold.

 

About Neill Lochery

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Neill Lochery, PhD, is a world-renowned source on Israel, the Middle East, and Mediterranean history. He is the author of five books and countless newspaper and magazine articles. He regularly appears on television in the UK, the USA, and the Middle East. He is currently based at University College London and regularly gives talks in the UK, Europe, the Middle East, and North America.
 
Published November 1, 2011 by PublicAffairs. 345 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Travel, War, Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction
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Reviewed by Robert Wilson on Dec 03 2011

Mr. Lochery skillfully documents the experiences of the rich and glamorous as well as the less fortunate and even sinister of the city's wartime arrivals...Distilling an enormous quantity of research, he has rendered a fascinating and readable account of this small country's role in World War II, protected, as it was, by its wily champion.

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