Britain, Turkey and the Soviet Union, 1940-45: Strategy, by N. Tamkin

By N. Tamkin

This booklet attracts at the most up-to-date archival releases together with these from the key global of British intelligence to provide the 1st accomplished research of Anglo-Turkish family in the course of the moment international battle, with a selected emphasis on Turkeys position within the altering dating among Britain and the Soviet Union.

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Extra info for Britain, Turkey and the Soviet Union, 1940-45: Strategy, Diplomacy and Intelligence in the Eastern Mediterranean (Studies in Military and Strategic History)

Sample text

13 During the winter of 1940–41, however, British misapprehensions of the German military build-up in the Balkans led to attempts to secure active Turkish resistance to the immediate threat in the region, despite the potential implications for Turkey’s ability to act as Britain’s bulwark in the Middle East. The Italian invasion of Greece began on 28 October, but the COS were already more concerned with German intentions in the Balkans: specifically the possibility that a German campaign there would be a precursor to an assault on the Middle East.

Britain equivocated between encouraging a Soviet–Turkish rapprochement; concern that such a rapprochement may no longer be possible, and that the attempt might drive Turkey to align with Germany; and lingering anxiety that Turkey might collaborate with Russia against British interests. Attempts to establish a coherent position on Straits revision were further handicapped by institutional schizophrenia regarding Soviet– German collaboration at the Straits. ’39 Yet Sargent believed that a quid pro quo between the dictators was possible, ‘since each needs the Straits for a different purpose.

Their pragmatic response to the outbreak of war between Germany and the Soviet Union marginalised the anti-Soviet prejudice of Sargent and his colleagues in the FO, at least for the duration of the war against Hitler. Yet it also marginalised – to the point of total exclusion – genuine insights into Soviet ambitions in Turkey (in the Caucasus, if not at the Straits), as revealed by diplomatic SIGINT during the summer of 1940. com - licensed to Feng Chia University - PalgraveConnect - 2011-03-06 Anglo-Russian Antagonism, June 1940 to June 1941 2 By the summer of 1941, one of Britain’s three main ‘images’ of pre-war Turkey had been comprehensively dismantled.

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