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General George S. Patton. His tongue was as sharp as the cavalry saber he once wielded, and his fury as explosive as the shells he d ordered launched from his tank divisions. Despite his profane, posturing manner, and the sheer enthusiasm for conflict that made both his peers and the public uncomfortable, Patton s very presence commanded respect. Had his superiors given him free rein, the U.S. Army could have claimed victory in Berlin as early as November of 1944. General Erwin Rommel. His battlefield manner was authoritative, his courage proven in the trenches of World War I when he was awarded the Blue Max. He was a front line soldier who led by example from the turrets of his Panzers. Appointed to command Adolf Hitler s personal security detail, Rommel had nothing for contempt for the atrocities perpetrated by the Reich. His role in the Fuhrer s assassination attempt led to his downfall.

Except for a brief confrontation in North Africa, these two legendary titans never met in combat. Patton and Rommel is the first single-volume study to deal with the parallel lives of two generals who earned not only the loyalty and admiration of their own men, but the respect of their enemies, and the enmity of the leaders they swore to obey. From the origins of their military prowess, forged on the battlefields of World War I, to their rise through the ranks, to their inevitable clashes with political authority, military historian Dennis Showalter presents a riveting portrait of two men whose battle strategies changed the face of warfare and continue to be studied in military academies around the globe.

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About the Author

Dennis Showalter is a writer and retired professor of history at Colorado College, the past President of the Society for Military history, and joint editor of the publication, War in History specializing in comparative military history. His works include Instrument of War: The German Army 1914-1918, Patton and Rommel: Men of War in the Twentieth Century, If the Allies Had Fallen: Sixty Alternate Scenarios of World War II, and many other titles related to modern warfare.

Reviews

One of the most distinguished American historians of WWII returns with an outstanding parallel biography of George Patton and Erwin Rommel. The research is thorough, the quality of the writing superb. The two men came from substantially different backgroundsAPatton from an upper-class family with a distinguished record in the Confederate Army, Rommel from staunchly middle-class Wurttemburgers barely eligible to send their son into the Kaiser's army. Both saw combat in WWI (Rommel far more than Patton), spent a frustrating interwar period (in which Rommel fared better than Patton) and rose to high distinction as experts in mobile warfare in WWII. Today, each is more admired in the other's country, and the author argues persuasively that they had different ambitions in their pursuit of mobility: Patton lived a cavalryman's image of antique heroism a century out-of-date, while Rommel was the consummate technical expert (except in logistics). They certainly rank together as two of the most written-about, and two of the most accomplished, military commanders of the century, and Showalter, the former head of the Society for Military History, ranks as a scholar who has done them justice, making two complex men and a vast panorama of military history remarkably accessible for experts and lay readers alike. (Apr.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

-One of the most distinguished American historians of WWII returns with an outstanding parallel biography of George Patton and Erwin Rommel. The research is thorough, the quality of the writing superb...Showalter ranks as a scholar who has done them justice, making two complex men and a vast panorama of military history remarkably accessible for experts and lay readers alike.- --Publishers Weekly -A smooth, very accessible narrative that is jam-packed with enough interesting insights to keep anyone's inner scholar happy...Both Rommel and Patton come across as surprisingly thoughtful soldiers who were also lead-from-the-front hard-chargers...It is a good story, and the quality of the writing makes it even better. It is vivid, vigorous, laced with unforgettable metaphor, alternately funny and moving.- --World War II Magazine-A distinguished American scholar of World War II gives us an outstanding parallel biography.- --Booklist "One of the most distinguished American historians of WWII returns with an outstanding parallel biography of George Patton and Erwin Rommel. The research is thorough, the quality of the writing superb...Showalter ranks as a scholar who has done them justice, making two complex men and a vast panorama of military history remarkably accessible for experts and lay readers alike." --Publishers Weekly "A smooth, very accessible narrative that is jam-packed with enough interesting insights to keep anyone's inner scholar happy...Both Rommel and Patton come across as surprisingly thoughtful soldiers who were also lead-from-the-front hard-chargers...It is a good story, and the quality of the writing makes it even better. It is vivid, vigorous, laced with unforgettable metaphor, alternately funny and moving." --World War II Magazine"A distinguished American scholar of World War II gives us an outstanding parallel biography." --Booklist

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