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War As I Knew It Paperback – May 8, 1995
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From the Back Cover
About the Author
Rick Atkinson is the bestselling author of "An Army at Dawn" (winner of the Pulitzer Prize for history), "The Day of Battle", "The Long Gray Line", "In the Company of Soldiers", and "Crusade". His many other awards include two Pulitzer Prizes for journalism, the George Polk Award, and the Pritzker Military Library Literature Award. A former staff writer and senior editor at "The Washington Post", he lives in Washington, D.C.
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Top Customer Reviews
The book begins with a collection of open letters written by Patton during the time of his campaigns in North Africa and Sicily. For cesnorship reasons, these letters do not contain much battle information, but they provide a unique insight into the man Patton was, and how he dealt with problems that were not military in nature. He discusses his meeting with French and Arab leaders in attempts to protect his rear while he defeated the Germans to his front. The letters from Sicily are similar, discussing not so much tactics but outcomes, reactions, and the like. These early letters show how much Patton was moved around, and the interesting places that he visited.
The main part of the book covers Patton's proudest moments--commanding the U.S. Third Army. This section is wholly unique. Written shortly after they campaign ended with Germany's surrender, Patton describes the actions of Third Army from Normandy to Czechoslovakia. While he does not go into great detail about tactics and such, he provides a window into his own mind. The reader knows what he was thinking when he made his decisions, and the reasons that he made those decisions. In so doing, the reader gets a firm understanding of how an army worked in WW II. Also, he mentions his personal relationships with many different generals...ones you don't read about in history books. In short, this is a first hand account from the man who was a pure warrior.
The concluding section is Patton's gift to future leaders.Read more ›
Unfortunately with Patton's premature and unusual death in December 1945, (calm yourselves, conspiracy theorists) the post-war world lost its opportunity for the war's greatest memoir and its most unpredictable political leader. War As I Knew It is the next best thing, a full account of the leadership and strategic thinking of our greatest warrior.
Readers will travel with Patton from his arrival in North Africa in 1943, through the campaigns in Sicily, Western France, Belgium, the Bulge, and ending in May 1945 in Austria. Lesser known events are related such as the initial fighting with the French in Africa. In many cases, Patton revisits towns and territory that he had first seen as a young officer in the First World War.
Surprisingly, the book is also full of humorous stories such as unusual encounters with African tribal leaders, British generals, and French politicians. Cameo appearances include Marlene Dietrich, General T. Roosevelt (son of the President, who participated in the Normandy Invasion), and historical figures like William the Conquerer who influenced Patton's tactics.
Patton greatly plays down the events that led to his downfall, only briefly mentioning the slapping incidents, although he does make a very forceful argument that malingerers are a great threat to morale and need to be punished with extreme measures.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
If you have a working functional brain " which is rare now a days going by what I see on TV and other references, you'll like this reading. Read morePublished 7 days ago by Steve
I'm totally loving the book. It is an amazing account written by one of the greatest generals ever.Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
general Patron was the general the Nazi’s feared most. We him now! We need a leader now!Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
This is an interesting compendium of Patton's diary entries during WW2. The writings have been edited by Patton's widow and his former deputy chief of staff. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Douglas Criner
Patton's war diary, edited by his wife Beatrice and trusted friends, still reflects his audacity, confidence and aggressive leadership style.Published 4 months ago by Tonet