Alanbrooke, 1st Viscount (Field Marshal Alan F. Brooke)

1944 Karsh photo of British Field Marshal Brooke, Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee, signed by Brooke AND photographer Yousuf Karsh

Price: $1495.00 Special Offer - $1250.00



Description:
(1883-1963) Chief of the Imperial General Staff in WW II, named Field Marshal 1944. As Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee, he was the foremost military advisor to Prime Minister Churchill, and as coordinator of British military efforts was a most important contributor to the Allied victory in 1945. Born to a prominent Anglo-Irish family from West Ulster with a long military tradition, he was educated in Pau, France, where he lived until 16 and became a fluent French speaker. After graduation from the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich, he was commissioned in 1902. During WW I, he served with the Royal Artillery in France where he became an outstanding planner of operations. At the Battle of the Somme in 1916 he introduced the French "creeping barrage" system, helping protect advancing infantry from enemy machine gun fire. He ended the war as a lieutenant colonel with 2 DSOs. From the mid-1930s Brooke was Inspector of Artillery, Director of Military Training and then GOC of the Mobile Division. In 1938, on promotion to lieutenant general he took command of the Anti-Aircraft Corps (renamed Anti-Aircraft Command in April 1939) and in July 1939 he moved to lead the Southern Command. At the outbreak of WW II, he was already one of the army's foremost generals and commanded II Corps in the British Expeditionary Force. When the German offensive began Brooke distinguished himself in the handling of the British forces in the retreat to Dunkirk. Shortly after Dunkirk he was again sent to France to command remaining British troops there. Brooke insisted that all British forces be withdrawn and some 200,000 British and Allied troops were successfully evacuated from NW France. He was appointed in July 1940 to command United Kingdom Home Forces to take charge of anti-invasion preparations and direct the land battle in the event of German landings. In December 1941 Brooke succeeded Field Marshal Sir John Dill as Chief of the Imperial General Staff (CIGS), professional head of the British Army, and represented the Army on the Chiefs of Staff Committee. In March 1942 he succeeded Admiral of the Fleet Sir Dudley Pound as chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee, holding both posts until retirement in 1946. For the rest of the war, Brooke was the foremost military adviser to Prime Minister Winston Churchill (who was also Minister of Defence), the War Cabinet, and to Britain's allies. In 1942, he joined the US-British Combined Chiefs of Staff. His focus was primarily on the Mediterranean Theatre of Operations, his key issues to rid North Africa of Axis forces, knock Italy out of the war, open up the Mediterranean for Allied shipping, and then mount the cross Channel invasion when the Allies were ready and the Germans sufficiently weakened. At the January 1943 Casablanca Conference it was decided that the Allies should invade Sicily under Eisenhower, which postponed the planned invasion of Western Europe until 1944. In May 1943 a fixed time was set for Operation Overlord, an agreement that Brooke continued to have doubts about for many months. He looked forward to taking command of the Allied invasion of Western Europe, which he believed had been promised by Churchill on 3 occasions. During the 1st Quebec Conference in August, it was decided that command would go to General George C. Marshall. Marshall's work as Army Chief of Staff was too important for him to leave Washington and Dwight D. Eisenhower was appointed instead. Brooke was bitterly disappointed. When Churchill’s fanciful strategic ideas collided with sound military strategy it was only Brooke on the Chiefs of Staff Committee who could stand up to the Prime Minister. Despite their disagreements Brooke and Churchill held affection for each other. His war diaries, edited by historian Sir Arthur Bryant, were first released (in abridged versions) during 1957 (“The Turn of the Tide”) and 1959 (“Triumph in the West”). Originally never meant to be published, Viscount Alanbrooke (as he had become) changed his mind because of the lack of credit to him and the Chiefs of Staff in Churchill's own war memoirs, which essentially presented their ideas and innovations as Churchill’s own. Following his retirement from the Army, Brooke was Colonel Commandant of the Honourable Artillery Company 1946-54. He was created Baron Alanbrooke, of Brookeborough in the County of Fermanagh, in 1945 and 1st Viscount Alanbrooke in 1946. He became Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath (KCB) 1940, ADC General to the King 1944-46, Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath (GCB) 1942, Constable of the Tower of London 1950-55, Lord Lieutenant of the County of London 1950–57, Knight of the Garter (KG) and member of the Order of Merit (OM) 1946, etc. At the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II he was appointed Lord High Constable of England, commanding all troops taking part in the event. In 1994, a statue of Field Marshal Lord Alanbrooke was erected in front of the Ministry of Defence in Whitehall in London. SP “A. F. Brooke F.M.”, 12 ¼ x 9 ¾ copyrighted Karsh of Ottawa photograph of Field Marshal Brooke, signed by hi8m in ink dated May 15 1944. Karsh "No. 2” copyright backstamp on verso. Pencil signed by Karsh at lower left under image with copyright "bug". YOUSUF KARSH (1908-2002) Armenian-Canadian portrait photographer. In 1928, his uncle, a photographer,arranged for Karsh to apprentice with portrait photographer John Garo in Boston. His first solo exhibition was in 1936 in the Drawing Room of the Château Laurier hotel in Ottawa. He moved his studio into the hotel in 1973, and it remained there until he retired in 1992. Karsh's work was discovered by Canadian PM Mackenzie King and attracted the attention of varied celebrities.On 30 December 1941 he photographed Winston Churchill, after Churchill’s speech to Canadian House of Commons in Ottawa. His portrait of Churchill was on the cover of Life magazine and brought Karsh international prominence; it is claimed to be the most reproduced photographic portrait in history. Karsh published 15 books of his photographs, which include brief descriptions of the sessions, during which he would ask questions and talk with his subjects to relax them as he composed the portrait.

Condition: Very good
Type:Photograph






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