This book is packed with stories of strange, coincidental, unexplained, miraculous happenings of World War II. Here are a few.
-A Pole (Roman Turski) just leaving a hotel concealed a fleeing Jewish man under his hotel bed, playing dumb about him to the Nazis who were on his tail. The Pole went to war against Germany and was wounded; the surgeon who saved his life was that Jew.
-During the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, many lives were saved by 50 visiting civilian doctors who happened to be there that day to listen to a lecture.
-The reason Jimmy Doolittle’s 1943 air raid on Tokyo was so successful was that the Japanese had just finished a city-wide air raid drill in which they had put some of their own planes in the air as a protective shield. The Japanese citizens, gunners, and pilots mistook the US planes coming in to drop bombs for Japanese planes, so they weren’t fired on.
-A British spy (Henri A. E. Dericourt) who had just arrived in France wanted to locate a notorious German spy-catcher rumoured to be in the area. By happenstance, the Brit found he was that exact German’s new neighbor.
-After several foiled escape attempts from a German camp, captured French official (Lt. Pierre Lebrun) succeeded and made it to Switzerland. He’d left a forwarding address on his belongings in the camp, and astoundingly, the camp Kommandant shipped his things to him.
-Shortly after the Italian surrender, some angry Germans entered a small Italian city and started harassing the citizens. Timely American artillery shells chased the Nazis away and killed a drunk German soldier who was about to murder several Italian civilians.
-An American sailor (Joseph Kline, Jr.) wanted to accompany a chase after a Japanese sub, but he had guard duty that none of his friends would cover for him. His anger was transformed into gratitude, however, as the boats chasing the sub got into trouble and were blown up.
-During the London Blitz, Prime Minister Churchill, on the way back from inspecting anti-aircraft stations, sat in the left-hand side of his car instead of in his customary place on the right. A sudden bomb going off on the left side of the car almost tipped it over on its right side, but Churchill’s weight on the left side prevented that. He credited “a feeling of interference” and “some guiding Hand.”
-A sudden, unexplainable impulse to change seats saved not a few lives, including Lt. Gen. Mark Clark from friendly fire, and a visiting Ernest Hemingway from a German shell on the Siegfried Line. And during the Battle of the Bulge, General Patton’s “sudden inspiration” in the middle of one night, that the Germans were going to attack, led to his ordering a pre-emptive strike, which stopped a German attack that was actually coming right then.
-A newspaper executive (Amon Carter, Sr.) was part of a group brought to Germany to see the Nazi concentration camps; while there, he was reunited with a very special recently liberated POW, his son who had been captured by the Germans 2 years earlier.
God certainly does work in mysterious ways!