For 30 years Joseph Stalin rules the Soviet Union with an iron fist. Anyone who stands in his way will be destroyed.
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See how Osama bin Laden's journey unfolds; from his roots as a privileged young Saudi boy to becoming the formidable leader of al-Qaeda, and his lifetime commitment to violent jihad against the West, which results in the horrific attacks in 2001.
2015 • History
Francois Duvalier trained as a medical doctor, but his healing touch was lost as he became the ruthless dictator "Papa Doc". The tools of his tyranny were violence and Voodoo. He killed 30,000 people, and kept a nation in fear of his mystical powers.
2015 • History
Drama documentary about Hernan Cortes, Spanish conquistador who overthrew the Aztec empire and won Mexico for the crown of Spain. In, 1519 the Spanish adventurer Hernan Cortes is supposed to have taken on the mighty Aztec empire with a handful of soldiers and 16 horses. The myth claims that the Aztec emperor, Montezuma, surrendered his empire beause he believed Cortes to be a God. But a more accurate account suggests that the Conquistadors started a civil war in Central America, uniting an army of tribesmen who hated Aztec rule. Montezuma is revealed to be a sophisticated ruler. This is the story of a man who, almost in one fell swoop, subdued an entire civilization: the Aztec Empire. It is one of the highlights and at the same time one of the darkest chapters in human history. In August 1519, the Spanish conquistador Hernan Cortes lands on the east coast of unexplored Central America. Driven by the greed for fabulous riches, Cortes wants to conquer the Aztec kingdom.
Dan Snow journeys through Egypt's Valley of the Kings, and uncovers the stories of European explorers going in search of treasures in this long-lost desert chasm. He discovers the work of maverick engineer Giovanni Belzoni, who levered out statues of pharaohs, the rivalries that erupted between teams of explorers across Europe in search of long-buried treasures, and tells the story of the most famous discovery in the valley - Howard Carter's unearthing of Tutankhamun's Tomb.
2022 • History
Dr Helen Castor explores the life - and death - of Joan of Arc. Joan was an extraordinary figure - a female warrior in an age that believed women couldn't fight, let alone lead an army. But Joan was driven by faith, and today more than ever we are acutely aware of the power of faith to drive actions for good or ill. Since her death, Joan has become an icon for almost everyone - the left and the right, Catholics and Protestants, traditionalists and feminists. But where in all of this is the real Joan - the experiences of a teenage peasant girl who achieved the seemingly impossible? Through an astonishing manuscript, we can hear Joan's own words at her trial, and as Helen unpicks Joan's story and places her back in the world that she inhabited, the real human Joan emerges.
2015 • History
The dramatic story of the defense of France against Hitler's invading army in order to enable the desperate evacuation of over 300K men of the British Expeditionary Force and Allied troops across the English Channel to safety in 1940.
Examines the botched raid on the German-occupied harbour of Dieppe, France in August 1942, which resulted in the loss of around 4,000 Allied men and drove home just how costly an invasion of France would be. The programme also focuses on Hitler's order in 1945 to destroy any military or industrial facilities that could be useful to the enemy - which would have condemned the German people to utter desolation.
The Story of the Parachute Parachutists are a breed apart, for few experience the freedom and the whims and the very substance of the air as they do. From its original development and use during the Great War, through the beginning of sport parachuting between the wars and its use in World War II (including airborne forces) to the skydivers of today. Includes footage of early unsuccessful attempts. A history of parachuting incorporates the pioneers, those who have leapt for their lives from stricken aircraft, the paratroopers who used the parachute to carry them to battle , the show-jumpers, the Sky Divers who jump simply for pleasure and the test jumpers who made it possible for them to do so. Like many inventions the parachute was originally developed during the heat of battle in the Great War. During the inter-war years it started to develop as a sport but came into its maturity in the Second World War with the development of airborne forces, which played a key part in Hitler's invasion plans. The skydivers of today are the latest in a long list of those who sought to descend from the skies; sometimes with unfortunate consequences. It is a story that relates the excitement, the triumph, and the tragedy that have accompanied parachuting through the years.
5/10 • The True Action Adventures of the Twentieth Century • 1996 • History