Hard Lying

Lewen Weldon


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Eland Publishing Ltd
18 May 2023
ISBN: 9781780601991
256 pages

From the publisher

Lewen Weldon was mapping the eastern desert of Egypt when World War I broke out. A fluent Arabic speaker, he was recruited to run a network of spies and confidential agents who were landed from a steam yacht onto the Syrian coast behind Turkish lines. He took his men to the shore in small boats at night, which also allowed him to land and conduct personal interviews before returning back through the surf. This vivid tale of adventure becomes eyewitness history as we encounter Armenians escaping the massacres, passionate Arab nationalists, resolute Turkish soldiers and a heroic network of Jewish volunteers. Weldon s modesty and self-deprecating Irish wit, complete with a few prejudices, take us to the vivid heart of his experience, in which each man depended for his life on his colleagues. This is a story that simply had to be told. 'We were extraordinarily lucky with our agents. I don t think more than seven were actually captured. Six of these were hanged and one had his head cut off.'