By John B. Romeiser
Not anyone bore witness greater than Don Whitehead . . . this quantity, deftly combining his diary and a formerly unpublished memoir, brings Whitehead and his reporting again to lifestyles, and 21st-century readers are the richer for it.-from the Foreword, through Rick AtkinsonWinner of 2 Pulitzer Prizes, Don Whitehead is among the mythical journalists of global battle II. For the linked Press he lined virtually each very important Allied invasion and crusade in Europe-from North Africa to landings in Sicily, Salerno, Anzio, and Normandy, and to the force into Germany. His dispatches, released within the contemporary Beachhead Don, are treasures of wartime journalism.From the autumn of September 1942, as a freshly minted A.P. journalist in long island, to the spring of 1943 as Allied tanks closed in at the Germans in Tunisia, Whitehead stored a diary of his stories as a rookie wrestle reporter. The diary stops in 1943, and it has remained unpublished formerly. again domestic later, Whitehead begun, yet by no means complete, a memoir of his striking lifestyles in combat.John Romeiser has woven either the North African diary and Whitehead's memoir of the following landings in Sicily right into a bright, unvarnished, and entirely riveting tale of 8 months in the course of probably the most brutal wrestle of the conflict. right here, Whitehead captures the fierce battling within the African wilderness and Sicilian mountains, in addition to infrequent insights into the day-by-day grind of reporting from a conflict quarter, the place tedium alternated with terror. within the culture of cartoonist invoice Mauldin's memoir Up entrance, Don Whitehead's robust self-portrait is destined to develop into an American vintage.
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Bob knew that if we lose this war he won’t get fried chicken like he used to get. ‘‘You know,’’ he said, ‘‘some of the northerners don’t like fried chicken,’’ Bob shook his head. ’’ Well, here’s hoping you get back to Tuscumbia, Bob, and that you have great heaping platters of fried chicken every day. We hadn’t been out of Lagos long before we hit rough weather. The ship bucked and bounced as we skirted the edge of several storms. All of us buckled on our safety belts to keep the ship from dropping from under us.
Their gait is a peculiar swinging motion that makes their hips appear to be ball bearings. There’s many a gawky queen in Hollywood who would give a fortune for such a beautiful carriage as these natives develop by carrying things around on their head! ’’ After one year they tell me the inertia and boredom combine to undermine the white man’s health. Fevers and dysentery are the dangers plus the innervating [sic] climate. You think you can take it when bang—you’re a good prospect for hospitalization.
We got movies,’’ the soldier said, ‘‘and sometimes we go to the villages nearby or to San Juan. ‘‘There’s plenty of rum and women but none of it worth a damn. ‘‘The women are spoiled now. When the soldiers first came down, they could lay the girls for nothing—just take them to the bushes. Then some of the boys began paying the women 25 cents or 50 cents to spend the night. ‘‘And, buddy, it didn’t take the girls long to catch on. They’re smart about money. ’’ After Puerto Rico, we headed for British Guiana.
Combat Reporter: Don Whitehead's World War II Diary And Memoirs by John B. Romeiser