Osprey Men-at-Arms 120 : Allied Commanders of World War II
This book provides a brief review of the careers of some of the most notable figures to achieve high command in the Allied forces, a list that includes General of the Army Omar Bradley, Field Marshal Sir Bernard Montgomery, General George Patton and General of the Army Dwight D. Eisenhower. A large proportion of luck is involved in military success - the luck to be in the right place at the right time, with the right contracts. Montgomery was only appointed to command 8th Army because the first choice, General Gott, was killed; Bradley, junior to Patton, was given US 1st Army as Eisenhower's choice. Successful generals have all had the ability to establish a rapport with both their staffs and their men; all the great Allied commanders of World War II portrayed in this book had this ability to a greater or lesser extent. Dowding, cut down in his prime by intrigue, has a loyal following to this day among those who served under him. Both Cunningham and Patton were characterised as martinets - but both were adored by their men. The Second World War, unlike the First, fostered the projection of 'characters', thanks to the power of the media. Some generals understood and used the tendency of each army's press corps to boost the image of 'their' general. Montgomery and Patton could both have made a career in show business; but this does not lessen their standing as field commanders. Anthony Kemp examines the careers and personalities of the Allied Commanders who engineered the downfall of Hitler, backed by numerous contemporary photographs and eight full page colour plates by Angus McBride.
- The Commanders
- The Plates