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Arabs at War: Military Effectiveness, 1948-1991 (Studies in War, Society, and the Military) Paperback – September 1, 2004
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Top Customer Reviews
The conclusions have also been summarized by the other reviewers. As I see it, Pollack proposes that Arab military ineffectiveness stems mainly from an inability of smaller units, either on land or in the air, to engage in the free-flowing maneuver and combined-arms co-ordination required for tactical success on the modern battlefield.Read more ›
Pollack's argument is twofold. He claims that because of Arab society Arab militaries lack basic skills that modern European armies take for granted. For instance because Arab culture looks down upon those who preform physical labor nations like Saudi Arabia wouldn't teach maitenance skills for rifles and aircraft. As a result Saudi Arabia still rely on foriegn advisors. Pollack notes that "Saudis also were limited in the fact that very few of their people were willing to take on a job that they considered menial labor-hence the support services suffered." (pg. 431)
The second portion of his thesis is that the junior officer corps of most Arab armies is incredibly poor. Considered having one of the finest armies in the Middle East, Jordan showed that on a tactical level it simply could not preform. While most Western militaries have based their soldiers tactics off of the old WW2 German saying "every corporal should carry a field marshalls baton." Arab countries such as the Hashemite Kingdom have good generals but poor lower level leadership. This was evident when Pollack states (talking about the battle of al Karamah), "The artillery was accurate but almost exclusively preplanned, preregistered fire missions and, therefore, did not demonstrate any real improvement over 1967. Whenever Jordanian armor encountered Israeli armor-and these were mostly even fights in both numbers and types of tanks engaged-the Jordanians either lost or, at best gained a draw which still favored the Israelis."(pg.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very good on the who, what, when, and where side of history. The why is touched on briefly, but is such a broad topic that the author says in the conclusion that it would take... Read morePublished 6 days ago by Bradley Ingram
Tremendously insightful and thorough. Makes for a good companion to Stephen Biddle's "Military Power: Explaining Victory and Defeat in Modern Battle."Published 12 months ago by D. Rozenson
The book basically talks about why the Arabs did so poorly in battle/war. It discusses each Arab country individually, but the conclusion is about the same for each one of them. Read morePublished on April 7, 2014 by A.W.
I found this study very useful as a reference for a research paper I was writing. It is a detailed, thoughtful, and exhaustive analysis, which balances out the numerous analyses of... Read morePublished on February 15, 2014 by Howard G. Anders Jr
After reading this book, the reading will come away feeling better about any possible future conventional military action against Arab countries.Published on January 6, 2014 by Ron Morrison
There was a chapter in Richard Marcinko’s Rogue Warrior, where he goes to Egypt to train Mubarak’s special forces. The results are a failure, because the troops are a joke. Read morePublished on November 30, 2013 by B. Wolinsky
As a reader of the history of modern Middle East, this book was a treasure. "Arabs at war is nothing less than an encyclopedia of the military performance of all major Arabic... Read morePublished on October 20, 2013 by Mohammed Zakaria