A remarkable compendium of the worst military decisions and the men who made them The annals of history are littered with horribly bad military leaders. These combat incompetents found amazing ways to ensure their army's defeat. Whether it was a lack of proper planning, miscalculation, ego, bad luck, or just plain stupidity, certain wartime ...
A remarkable compendium of the worst military decisions and the men who made them The annals of history are littered with horribly bad military leaders. These combat incompetents found amazing ways to ensure their army's defeat. Whether it was a lack of proper planning, miscalculation, ego, bad luck, or just plain stupidity, certain wartime stratagems should never have left the drawing board. Written with wit, intelligence, and eminent readability, How to Lose a Battle pays dubious homage to these momentous and bloody blunders, including: Cannae, 216 B.C. the bumbling Romans lose 80,000 troops to Hannibal's forces. The Second Crusade: an entire Christian army is slaughtered when it stops for a drink of water. The Battle of Britain: Hitler's dreaded Luftwaffe blows it big-time. Pearl Harbor: more than one warning of the impending attack is there, but nobody listens. How to Lose a Battle includes more than thirty-five chapters worth of astonishing (and avoidable) disasters, both infamous and obscure -- a treasure trove of trivia, history, and jaw-dropping facts about the most costly military missteps ever taken.
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Publishers Weekly, 2006-04-17 The publisher bills this effort as a "tongue-in-cheek" and "humorous" analysis of the world's worst military disasters. But aside from wry chapter titles (e.g., "Austerlitz: They Fell for It? Austria, 1805"), these are generally straightforward accounts of some of the deadliest carnage in human history. That includes the Civil War's Battle of Antietam-the bloodiest single day in American history, during which some 6,000 Union and Confederate soldiers were killed and more than 16,000 were wounded-and the three-day Battle of Gettysburg, which resulted in 51,000 casualties on both sides. There's also the WWII Battle of Okinawa, during which more than 12,000 Americans were killed and nearly 32,000 wounded, along with 142,000 estimated Japanese casualties (military and civilian). Fawcett (You Did What? Mad Plans and Great Historical Disasters) gathers 37 concise, analytical, finger-pointing accounts of these and other battles from ancient times to the late 1960s. He and contributors Brian Thomsen, William R. Forstchen, Douglas Niles and Edward E. Kramer readably and insightfully convey a wide knowledge of military history, but more in-depth and well-annotated analyses of these battles are readily available elsewhere. (July 1) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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