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Raising Churchill's Army: The British Army and the War against Germany 1919-1945 (Hardback)
  • Raising Churchill's Army: The British Army and the War against Germany 1919-1945 (Hardback)
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Raising Churchill's Army: The British Army and the War against Germany 1919-1945 (Hardback)

(author)
£100.00
Hardback 332 Pages / Published: 08/06/2000
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This is the first serious analysis of the combat capability of the British army in the Second World War. It sweeps away the myth that the army suffered from poor morale, and that it only won its battles thorugh the use of 'brute force' and by reverting to the techniques of the First World War. David French analyses the place of the army in British strategy in the interwar period and during the Second World War. He shows that after 1918 the General Staff tried hard to learn the lessons of the First World War, enthusiastically embracing technology as the best way of minimizing future casualties. In the first half of the Second World War the army did suffer from manifold weaknesses, not just in the form of shortages of equipment, but also in the way in which it applied its doctrine. Few soldiers were actively eager to close with the enemy, but the morale of the army never collapsed and its combat capability steadily improved from 1942 onwards. Professor French assesses Montgomery's contributions to the war effort and concludes that most important were his willingness to impose a uniform understanding of doctrine on his subordinates, and to use mechanized firepower in ways quite different from Haig in the First World War.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780198206415
Number of pages: 332
Weight: 622 g
Dimensions: 242 x 162 x 23 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
With considerable verve French takes up the thankless task of defending the army's performance ... French's analysis of the doctrinal debates of the interwar period is a refreshing and at times startling revision of the standard account. * Canandian Military History *
A work which is both rich in its documentation and provocative in its conclusions ... an important book as well as a rewarding one. * English Historical Review *
Raising Churchill's Army is wide-ranging, thorough, lucid, and compelling. It will deservedly become a central text on the British Army in the Second World War ... deserves to be read by anyone seriously interested in the emerging debates surrounding the nature and performance of the British Army in World War II. * Twentieth Century British History *
It will become required reading for any study of the British experience in the Second World War. * The Journal of Military History *
David French cuts through both the cant of the memoirs and the claims of the revisionists in a study that is scholarly, cogent and profoundly important. * Hew Strachan, Army Historical Research *
Masterful and fascinating book ... not just a military history but a carefully woven account of the political, economic, social, and personal elements that illustrate the way that an army is equipped and led, and how and why it fights. * CHOICE *
A formidable study of the British Army before and during the Second World War. * Dr. Matthews Hughes, University College Northampton, RUSI. *
This book makes a key contribution to the debate about how the British fought the Second World War, and why the Allies took so long to win it ... David French's book makes compelling reading for any serious student of the Second World War. * Max Hastings, Yorkshire Post *
Arresting new study ... a bold book - the boldness of its conception too easily taken for granted - as stimulating and discriminating as anything in the field since the iconoclastic Firepower: British Army Weapons and Theories of War 1904-1945 (1982) by Shelford Bidwell and Dominick Graham ... His work is a comprehensive exercise in ground-clearing, and a searching assessment of each element of fighting power ... It is a noble calling, and it makes a convincing book. * Alex Danchev, Times Literary Supplement *

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