How Great Generals Win by Bevin Alexander

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"An astute military historian's appraisal of what separates the sheep from the wolves in the great game of war."—Kirkus Reviews

If a key to military victory is to "get there first with the most," the true test of the great general is to decide where "there" is—the enemy's Achilles heel. Here is a narrative account of decisive engagements that succeeded by brilliant strategy more than by direct force. The reader accompanies those who fought, from Roman legionaries and Mongol horsemen to Napoleonic soldiery, American Civil War Rebels and Yankees, World War I Tommies, Lawrence of Arabia's bedouins, Chinese revolutionaries, British Desert Rats, Rommel's Afrika Korps, and Douglas MacArthur's Inchon invaders. However varied their weapons, the soldiers of all these eras followed a commander who faced the same obstacles and demonstrated the strategic and tactical genius essential for victory. "All warfare is based on deception," wrote Sun Tzu in The Art of War in 400 BCE. Bevin Alexander shows how great generals have interpreted this advice, and why it still holds true today.

About Bevin Alexander

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Bevin Alexander is the author of numerous books of military history, including the international bestseller How Hitler Could Have Won World War II. He has received many honors for his work as a historian and appears frequently on The History Channel, Discovery, and more. He lives in Bremo Bluff, VA. Author website:
Published August 17, 1993 by W. W. Norton & Company. 320 pages
Genres: History, War, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Subedai (whose Mongol hordes sacked Buda and Pest during the mid-13th century), and MacArthur (whose daring Inchon assault turned the tide of the Korean War).

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Publishers Weekly

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Alexander ( Korea: The First War We Lost ) reveals how some of the great military men of history applied common-sense principles of warfare that ``nearly always will secure victory.'' Relying on deception, these generals usually won their campaigns with a surprise attack on the enemy's rear or fl...

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London Review of Books

One of Keegan’s many original perceptions is that the Mongols bequeathed their concept of total war to the Ming (who finally ejected them from China), and to the crusader conquistadors who threw the Arabs out of Spain and went on to exterminate the highly formalised Aztec and Inca armies.

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Library of Economics and Liberty

I just finished Chapter 3, "Deterring World War III," in which he argues that nuclear weapons weren't necessary to deter World War III because World War II was such a horrible experience for all concerned that the deterrence of war from the horror of non-nuclear war was about as great as the dete...

May 19 2011 | Read Full Review of How Great Generals Win

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