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This is the biography of the most distinguished field commander of modern times, who turned to scholarship and writing at an early stage of his career and pursued both professional military life and historical study in parallel. In later life he also took to broadcasting and commentating. Half his military life was spent abroad on operations and his career spanned the period from the Second World War, in which he served as a platoon and company commander, winning the MC in Greece and being mentioned in despatches, and then the campaign in Palestine. He fought in the Korean War, during which he was at the Imjin River - where he won his first DSO - and then spent three years as a prisoner of the Chinese Emergency during which he made six escape attempts, was beaten, starved and tortured. He then served in Cyprus, at Suez and in the intervention in Jordan. He commanded 3 Para in the Radfan, where he won his second DSO. He then served in Borneo and was later the first Commander Land Forces in Northern Ireland. He ended his military career as Commander-in-Chief of NATO's Northern Region. Understanding Farrar-Hockley the soldier is impossible without also understanding Farrar-Hockley the scholar; the reverse is also true. He was never a stranger to controversy- Margaret Thatcher valued his candid advice because, as she said to him, 'you tell me things I didn't kw'; and he never walked away from a fight in his life. He was a man of redoubtable character and huge achievements, an inspirational leader and commander in peace and war, at every level.
Lieutenant-General Jonathon Riley is a General Officer with multinational operational command experience at all levels from platoon to corps in theatres from Northern Ireland to the Balkans, the Gulf, Iraq, Sierra Leone and Afghanistan; as such, he is well placed to penetrate, understand and to illuminate to the reader the challenges that an officer like Tony Farrar-Hockley faced in combat and in high command. He has been awarded the DSO and NATO Meritorious Service Medal and he is an Officer of the Legion of Merit of the United States of America. General Riley holds the degrees of MA and PhD in modern history and has seventeen published books including two biographies, one of which is that of General Sir Hugh Stockwell who held similar commands to AFH; he has also published A Matter of Honour: The Life, Campaigns and Generalship of Isaac Brock, in Canada for the bicentenary of the war of 1812. His book Napoleon as a General was nominated for the Army's Military History Book of the Year award. General Riley is currently Visiting Professor in War Studies at King's College London, a member of the British Commission for Military History, and Chairman of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers Museum Trust. He is retained as a technical expert by the International Criminal Court, has undertaken work with the International Committee of the Red Cross, and sits on two bodies advising the Welsh Government on matters related to the commemoration of the Great War.