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During the First World War, the Belgian coastal area was occupied by the German Marinekorps Flandern. The harbours of Zeebrugge, Ostend and Bruges became important U-boat nests, sinking no less than 2,554 ships with supplies for Great Britain. Due to the strategic importance of these harbours, the Germans constructed an enormous amount of coastal batteries and other fortifications along the Belgian coast. They also possessed a very large air force protecting these installations. The German Marine Corps in Flanders 1914-1918 gives a completely new view on the 1918 Zeebrugge raid. Of significant importance is that for the first time the location of Commander Harrison who fell in battle is exposed; Harrison was to be awarded the posthumous Victoria Cross for bravery. After twenty-eight years of research, this fascinating book leads to the identification of two unknown officers at Zeebrugge Churchyard Cemetery. Timed to be published for the First World War anniversary of 2014, this is an absorbing and astonishing account of the giant naval and air battle. Written by a world-class expert who has contributed towards the BBC and The History Channel, the book also includes hundreds of unpublished photographs and eyewitness accounts.
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Johan R. Ryheul was born in Bruges, Flanders, and has written various articles for local and international magazines on archaeological and First World War subjects. Ryheul has participated in First World War documentaries for the BBC and The History Channel. He has written nine books in Dutch about First World War aerial and naval warfare.
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