Jonathan Dimbleby Discusses His New Book on the Desert Campaign
Cheltenham: Veteran British radio and television presenter Jonathan Dimbleby gave an interview at the Literary Festival to Waterstone’s Booksellers describing how he came to write a book about the British Army’s campaign in North Africa during the Second World War and the conclusions he reached about Churchill’s strategy to pursue such action. The book Destiny in the Desert is now available in paperback both in Britain and North America. To coincide with the book’s original publication last year on the 70th anniversary of the battle, Dimbleby presented a BBC 2 documentary called “The Story Behind El Alamein.” To watch video of Dimbleby discussing his book, please CLICK HERE.
Dimbleby’s lengthy account of the events leading up to the Battle of El Alamein in November, 1942 starts with Churchill’s first speech to Parliament in May, 1940. Churchill’s decision to continue to prosecute the war after the French surrender in June made all the difference. Equally, Dimbleby believes Churchill’s decision to send the heart of the British Army to Egypt after the Battle of Britain profoundly shaped the war from that point. Unlike revisionist historians who argue that Churchill’s Mediterranean strategy unnecessarily delayed the D-Day landings, Dimbleby concludes Churchill’s actions ultimately helped preclude the United States government from attempting a premature cross-channel invasion.