Documentary offering a chronological timeline of how and why the central alliance between Great Britain, the United States and the Soviet Union was formed in the years leading into the Second World War. It was an uneasy alliance and one fraught with power struggles, false promises and deadly suspicions. Plus, an in-depth picture of the race to ultimate victory and post-war supremacy, concluding with V day on the May 8 1945.
2020 • History
In September 1944, Allied forces undertook Operation Market Garden, a joint air and ground mission with the aim of ending the Second World War by Christmas. Though the initiative liberated much of the Netherlands from Nazi occupation and established a foothold from which the Allies could make later offensives into Germany, it was considered a costly failure with lasting consequences.
2020 • History
The Story of the Special Air Service A young Commando officer conceived the idea in Egypt in 1941. Since then the SAS has grown to become the world’s most feared and prestigious Special Forces unit. The Special Air Service was created in 1941 by a young Commando officer, David Stirling, after a disastrous parachute jump whilst on duty in the Middle East. Since then the SAS has become the world's most feared and respected Special Forces unit. Only ten percent of those who apply for entry into SAS detachment are accepted to begin training--and few survive that. An SAS soldier must live off the land, crouch concealed for days at a time, live for months in the jungle or desert--and accompish the impossible. Since their creation, SAS forces have have completed missions in Egypt, Libya, the Falkland Islands and Borneo. Anywhere that Britain's interests are threatened, the SAS can be found...but not easily. Their history and most famous achievements, such as the Iranian embassy siege in 1980, are captured in this startling documentary.
4/10 • The True Action Adventures of the Twentieth Century • 1996 • History
Up to one million gladiators are thought to have died in arenas across the Roman Empire. Seventy-five were recently found in a single cemetery in York. Two thousand years ago, York was a Roman stronghold, a staging ground for the push against the Scots. Apart from ancient Italy, Roman Britain had the highest density of gladiatorial arenas in Europe. As part of a routine building inspection in the outskirts of York, archaeologists discover an ancient Roman burial site. It soon became apparent the find was anything but routine. Of total 80, 75 of the skeletons were men, a much higher majority than would be expected in a family grave site. The height, build and signs of musculature made the men much bigger than that of the average Roman man. A closer inspection of the bones also revealed a number of cut marks and fractures, evidence the men were no strangers to violence. Most disturbing of all most of the men had been brutally decapitated. Could the men be gladiators?
2010 • History
From Roman marbles and Egyptian mummies to Renaissance masterpieces and African sculptures, in this special accompanying programme to Civilisations, Mary Beard goes in search of extraordinary works of art from all over the world that can be seen here in Britain.
The Story of Imperial Airways How the air routes were trailblazed to the east and the Pacific during the 1920s and 1930s. The fascinating story of how the East and Australia became just an air-journey from Europe. The air route to the east and the Pacific was a trailblazing effort for Imperial Airways during the 1920's and 1930's. Subsidised by the government its objective was to open air routes between Britain and her Empire. In January 1927 a service between Cairo and Basra was opened after a furrow several hundred miles long was dug in the sand to assist navigation across the desert. This programme depicts the fascinating story of how the East and Australia became just a plane journey from England.
11/20 • The True Action Adventures of the Twentieth Century • 1996 • History
By July 1943, the full extent of Hitler's failed gamble in the East had become clear. After failing to deliver knock-out blows at Stalingrad and Moscow, his army was now at the mercy of the vast Soviet war machine. With its huge resources and seemingly limitless numbers of men, the Red Army slowly pushed the Germans back out of Russia through Ukraine, Poland, the Balkans and Hungary. This was war on a monster scale, pitching armies of millions against each other. But it was also a war fought by small bands of partisans, men like Tito in Yugoslavia, leading guerrilla bands against Nazi forces.