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War Made New: Weapons, Warriors, and the Making of the Modern World Paperback – August 16, 2007
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Brilliantly crafted history.
"The Wall Street Journal"
"The New York Times Book Review"
This is a book for both the general reader and reading generals.
"New York Post"
aBrilliantly crafted history.a
a"The Wall Street Journal"
a"The New York Times Book Review"
aThis is a book for both the general reader and reading generals.a
a"New York Post"
?Brilliantly crafted history.?
?"The Wall Street Journal"
?"The New York Times Book Review"
?This is a book for both the general reader and reading generals.?
?"New York Post"
About the Author
Max Boot is the author of the award-winning The Savage Wars of Peace: Small Wars and the Rise of American Power, which was selected as a 2002 Best Book of the Year by The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and The Christian Science Monitor. A senior fellow in national security studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and a weekly foreign-affairs columnist for the Los Angeles Times, he lectures regularly at numerous military schools and advises the Department of Defense on transformation issues.
Top customer reviews
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This is my only criticism. Otherwise the book is outstanding and very good.
Perhaps the two best features of this book are the caution with which Mr. Boot approaches the subject and the accessibility he gives it to readers not steeped in military history. War is a very complex and adaptive thing, a chameleon in Karl von Clausewitz's description. No two are alike, and the comparative impact of technology in each is unique, variable, and dependent on other factors which change with each new conflict in unpredictable ways. Mr. Boot thus prefaces his book with two fitting quotes to showcase the range of professional opinion on this fungible factor, one from the eccentric British Armor pioneer J.F.C. Fuller to the extent that technology is the exclusive determinant of battlefield success, the contrasting from Napoleon stating that it's impact is essentially non-existent.
The second very attractive feature of this book is that Mr. Boot is actually quite a good writer who truly makes history an interesting and quick read. His individual histories go into significant background matter to set up the battle, he delves into the bios of the major commanders on both sides, the political issues at stake, and the geography and terrain of the sites of the clashes. His accounts of the engagements themselves are raw, often exciting, and he performs a thorough after analysis action for each of his selected battles drawing out harsh lessons from the bloodshed and detritus.
Many have criticized what may at first glance seem like his eclectic selection of conflicts. This is perhaps understandable given the lack of representation of some major and politically important conflicts, Korea and Vietnam in particular being mentioned. However the author's purpose is to explore the slim slice of battles in which generally technology played a dominant role, and more particularly in which one side was pioneering or had mastered one of his identified revolutions in military technology while the other side was about to pay the price for its failure to adapt. Vietnam, although politically more important to America than many of the battles he showcases, was one in which the enemy fought successfully in a manner that nullified the impact of technology on the overall outcome of the war.
Mr. Boot summarizes his book with a preview of possible military revolutions to come and a recap of the lessons which have appeared repeatedly in his individual battle histories. Namely the constant changing of the technology of war, but a pace of change that is anything but, coming in fits and starts here and in giant and rapid bursts of innovation there. The unpredictability of when military revolutions will occur. The importance of mastering not just the technology behind them but the necessity of developing supporting tactics, training, doctrine, personnel policies, etc. to make the whole apparatus of war work in concert to deliver battlefield results. And perhaps most importantly the way military revolutions have restructured the geopolitical order in the past, leaving nations which did not adapt, often regardless of their previous size and power, on the decline, and smaller powers which did adapt the new masters of their domain.
All in all a recommended, but popular and not academic, book on technology in war which draws what appear to be very reasonable and illuminating conclusions.
The sole gripe is that Mr. Pressfield can be unduly verbose. There are times where he hits an angle several times before moving on. Overall, though, this is a minor issue, and does not detract from the book's value.
This book has hundreds of great things writen.To exemple,on page 88,we can read:"This was not because most non-Westerners were "noble-savages" who lived in a pacifist's paradise, as some Europeans once imagined.There was nothing edenic about the temples where Aztec priests ripped the still beating hearts out of thousands of victims."
Failures of this book are three:
1-Modernization by weapons,began in XIV Century.And this book really begans talking about XV Century.
2-The protestantism couldn't happened, without the turkish advance.And protestantism couldn't survive without advances of islamic turks.And this book has nothing about this fact.I knowthat american society is mainly protestant, but this book seems to be looking for, not to hurt american main faith.
3-This book has a pro-american bias.To exemple on page 211 we can read:"But while Mussolini was not a formidable adversary, Hitler and Tojo most definitely were".Well, emperor Hirohito,was a god on Earth.Tojo's powers were limited and latter reduced to nothing, on summer of 1944.With the Cold War, american realpolitik needed a friend in Japan.Hirohito's horrible crimes were forgotten,in exchange of Japan becoming an Uncle Sam's friend.