Allure of Battle

A History of How Wars Have Been Won and Lost
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ISBN-13:
9780199910991
Einband:
EPUB
Seiten:
0
Autor:
Cathal Nolan
eBook Typ:
Adobe Digital Editions
eBook Format:
EPUB
Kopierschutz:
Adobe DRM [Hard-DRM]
Sprache:
Englisch
Beschreibung:

History has tended to measure war's winners and losers in terms of its major engagements, battles in which the result was so clear-cut that they could be considered "e;decisive."e; Cannae, Konigsberg, Austerlitz, Midway, Agincourt-all resonate in the literature of war and in our imaginations as tide-turning. But these legendary battles may or may not have determined the final outcome of the wars in which they were fought. Nor has the "e;genius"e; of the so-called Great Captains - from Alexander the Great to Frederick the Great and Napoleon - play a major role. Wars are decided in other ways. Cathal J. Nolan's The Allure of Battle systematically and engrossingly examines the great battles, tracing what he calls "e;short-war thinking,"e; the hope that victory might be swift and wars brief. As he proves persuasively, however, such has almost never been the case. Even the major engagements have mainly contributed to victory or defeat by accelerating the erosion of the other side's defences. Massive conflicts, the so-called "e;people's wars,"e; beginning with Napoleon and continuing until 1945, have consisted of and been determined by prolonged stalemate and attrition, industrial wars in which the determining factor has been not military but matriel. Nolan's masterful book places battles squarely and mercilessly within the context of the wider conflict in which they took place. In the process it help corrects a distorted view of battle's role in war, replacing popular images of the "e;battles of annihilation"e; with somber appreciation of the commitments and human sacrifices made throughout centuries of war particularly among the Great Powers. Accessible, provocative, exhaustive, and illuminating, The Allure of Battle will spark fresh debate about the history and conduct of warfare.
History has tended to measure war's winners and losers in terms of its major engagements, battles in which the result was so clear-cut that they could be considered "e;decisive."e; Cannae, Konigsberg, Austerlitz, Midway, Agincourt-all resonate in the literature of war and in our imaginations as tide-turning. But these legendary battles may or may not have determined the final outcome of the wars in which they were fought. Nor has the "e;genius"e; of the so-called Great Captains - from Alexander the Great to Frederick the Great and Napoleon - play a major role. Wars are decided in other ways. Cathal J. Nolan's The Allure of Battle systematically and engrossingly examines the great battles, tracing what he calls "e;short-war thinking,"e; the hope that victory might be swift and wars brief. As he proves persuasively, however, such has almost never been the case. Even the major engagements have mainly contributed to victory or defeat by accelerating the erosion of the other side's defences. Massive conflicts, the so-called "e;people's wars,"e; beginning with Napoleon and continuing until 1945, have consisted of and been determined by prolonged stalemate and attrition, industrial wars in which the determining factor has been not military but matriel. Nolan's masterful book places battles squarely and mercilessly within the context of the wider conflict in which they took place. In the process it help corrects a distorted view of battle's role in war, replacing popular images of the "e;battles of annihilation"e; with somber appreciation of the commitments and human sacrifices made throughout centuries of war particularly among the Great Powers. Accessible, provocative, exhaustive, and illuminating, The Allure of Battle will spark fresh debate about the history and conduct of warfare.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgments
List of Maps and Illustrations
Introduction
Chapter I: Battle in History
Chapter II: Battle Retarded
Chapter III: Battle Remembered
Chapter IV: Battle Reformed
Chapter V: Battle with Reason
Chapter VI: Battle Restored
Chapter VII: Battle Decisive
Chapter VIII: Battle Defeated
Chapter IX: Battle Exalted
Chapter X: Battle of Annihilation
Chapter XI: Annihilation of Battle
Chapter XII: Annihilation of Strategy
Chapter XIII: Annihilation of Nations
Chapter XIV: Annihilation of Mercy
Chapter XV: Annihilation at Sea
Chapter XVI: Annihilation of Illusions
Conclusions
Glossary
History has tended to measure war's winners and losers in terms of its major engagements, battles in which the result was so clear-cut that they could be considered "decisive." Cannae, Konigsberg, Austerlitz, Midway, Agincourt-all resonate in the literature of war and in our imaginations as tide-turning. But these legendary battles may or may not have determined the final outcome of the wars in which they were fought. Nor has the "genius" of the so-called Great Captains - from Alexander the Great to Frederick the Great and Napoleon - play a major role. Wars are decided in other ways.
Cathal J. Nolan's The Allure of Battle systematically and engrossingly examines the great battles, tracing what he calls "short-war thinking," the hope that victory might be swift and wars brief. As he proves persuasively, however, such has almost never been the case. Even the major engagements have mainly contributed to victory or defeat by accelerating the erosion of the other side's defences. Massive conflicts, the so-called "people's wars," beginning with Napoleon and continuing until 1945, have consisted of and been determined by prolonged stalemate and attrition, industrial wars in which the determining factor has been not military but matériel.

Nolan's masterful book places battles squarely and mercilessly within the context of the wider conflict in which they took place. In the process it help corrects a distorted view of battle's role in war, replacing popular images of the "battles of annihilation" with somber appreciation of the commitments and human sacrifices made throughout centuries of war particularly among the Great Powers. Accessible, provocative, exhaustive, and illuminating, The Allure of Battle will spark fresh debate about the history and conduct of warfare.

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