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The First Soldier: Hitler as Military Leader

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After Germany’s humiliating World War II defeat, numerous German generals published memoirs claiming that their country’s brilliant military leadership had been undermined by the Führer’s erratic decision making. The author of three highly acclaimed books on the era, Stephen Fritz upends this characterization of Hitler as an ill-informed fantasist and demonstrates the ways After Germany’s humiliating World War II defeat, numerous German generals published memoirs claiming that their country’s brilliant military leadership had been undermined by the Führer’s erratic decision making. The author of three highly acclaimed books on the era, Stephen Fritz upends this characterization of Hitler as an ill-informed fantasist and demonstrates the ways in which his strategy was coherent and even competent. That Hitler saw World War II as the only way to retrieve Germany’s fortunes and build an expansionist Thousand-Year Reich is uncontroversial. But while his generals did sometimes object to Hitler’s tactics and operational direction, they often made the same errors in judgment and were in agreement regarding larger strategic and political goals. A necessary volume for understanding the influence of World War I on Hitler’s thinking, this work is also an eye-opening reappraisal of major events like the invasion of Russia and the battle for Normandy.


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After Germany’s humiliating World War II defeat, numerous German generals published memoirs claiming that their country’s brilliant military leadership had been undermined by the Führer’s erratic decision making. The author of three highly acclaimed books on the era, Stephen Fritz upends this characterization of Hitler as an ill-informed fantasist and demonstrates the ways After Germany’s humiliating World War II defeat, numerous German generals published memoirs claiming that their country’s brilliant military leadership had been undermined by the Führer’s erratic decision making. The author of three highly acclaimed books on the era, Stephen Fritz upends this characterization of Hitler as an ill-informed fantasist and demonstrates the ways in which his strategy was coherent and even competent. That Hitler saw World War II as the only way to retrieve Germany’s fortunes and build an expansionist Thousand-Year Reich is uncontroversial. But while his generals did sometimes object to Hitler’s tactics and operational direction, they often made the same errors in judgment and were in agreement regarding larger strategic and political goals. A necessary volume for understanding the influence of World War I on Hitler’s thinking, this work is also an eye-opening reappraisal of major events like the invasion of Russia and the battle for Normandy.

32 review for The First Soldier: Hitler as Military Leader

  1. 4 out of 5

    Mathieu Gaudreault

    Its a awesome book. Hitler is analysed as a military leader. yes the author aknoledge that he commited genocide and to reach is goal of vital space in the east, specialy the Soviet Union he had to mass murder slavic peoples and jews. Hitler wasn,t irrational in the way that he knew that time was going against his project. He was cleaver to use diplomacy till it suited him or could work. He wanted a series of short wars before the final showdown with thew Soviet Union. His generals just had a dif Its a awesome book. Hitler is analysed as a military leader. yes the author aknoledge that he commited genocide and to reach is goal of vital space in the east, specialy the Soviet Union he had to mass murder slavic peoples and jews. Hitler wasn,t irrational in the way that he knew that time was going against his project. He was cleaver to use diplomacy till it suited him or could work. He wanted a series of short wars before the final showdown with thew Soviet Union. His generals just had a different opinion about the timing of the war. He actualy till 1942 was arguing with his generals wich is not an attitude of an all powerfull warlord. In the Barbarossa campagin he let Halder manage the troups till the disastrous winter of 1941. His order to stand and hold were better than withdrawing and being routed on the way. Actually , Hitler ideas of focusing in the southern Soviet Union like Ukraine and the Caucassus were better than aiming for Moscow that even taken Stalin would just withdraw to another place like Kubyashev. Hitler did make a war losing mistake in July 1942 in splitting his force for Fall Blau where the germans aimed at the same tame to take the Caucassus Oil and Stalingrad. Actually Stalingrad was just to be bombed and ignored. In 1943 Hitler didn't answer to Stalin peace feelers because he wanted to keep what he earned. He wanted to avoid a political issue for the war till he was in a stronger position to didacte the terms. He still had a global view of the war and knew that things war goings against him. He still had the mindset of winning it till at least January 1945 after the failure of the Ardennes offensive. His goal was to defeat the Anglo-American landing and after crush the soviets in the east. I wasn't disapointed of this book.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Ha

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jerome

  4. 4 out of 5

    Galvis1792

  5. 4 out of 5

    Nissa

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jon Rupinski

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lucy Meeker

  8. 5 out of 5

    Terri

  9. 5 out of 5

    Columbus

  10. 4 out of 5

    Diana

  11. 4 out of 5

    Warrick

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ziggfred

  13. 5 out of 5

    Friedrich von Uxküll

  14. 5 out of 5

    Privada

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jordi

  16. 5 out of 5

    D

  17. 5 out of 5

    Tomo

  18. 5 out of 5

    Adam Gravano

  19. 5 out of 5

    John Morgan

  20. 5 out of 5

    Steven Chang

  21. 4 out of 5

    Steve Spencer

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kathy Cowick

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kandace

  24. 4 out of 5

    Linda

  25. 5 out of 5

    Parker Jenks

  26. 5 out of 5

    'Aussie Rick'

  27. 5 out of 5

    Theresa

  28. 4 out of 5

    Layla Ashby

  29. 4 out of 5

    Bou

  30. 5 out of 5

    Avis Black

  31. 5 out of 5

    Nefeli

  32. 5 out of 5

    Samantha Wilson

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