If not the Master Race, the masterful one.

Their win in the World Cup and their growing political and economic power in Europe may not lead the Germans into the fatal error again of thinking themselves the Master Race, but who could blame them for thinking themselves the masterful race. I have been reading a number of books lately about the ETO and come away impressed anew with their prowess in warfare, which can be traced back to before their overthrow of the Roman Empire after corruption and luxury had sapped its strength. It took the British, the Russians (who inflicted nine of ten of the German battlefield deaths) and us in concert with a collection of lesser powers to beat them in World War II.
I was also struck by the low opinion of British military ability privately held by their leadership. Max Boot writes in Winston’s War, “Again and again Churchill pressed General Wavell, and indeed all his generals, to overcome their fears of the enemy, to display the fighting spirit which he prized above all things, and which alone, he believed, would enable Britain to survive.” Left to their own, Boot adds, the generals would have accepted battle only on their own favorable terms, which is Montgomery’s career in a nutshell. Wavell told a friend, “My trouble is I am not really interested in war.” Adds Boot: “This was a surprisingly common limitation among Britain’s senior soldiers.” At another point, he laments that “they were agreeable men who lacked the killer instinct indispensable to victory.”
After Wavell was replaced in Egypt by General Alexander Auchinleck, the dismal story continued. Despite a three-to-one advantage in tanks and a greater mechanized mobility, the British were defeated again. B.H. Liddell Hart in his History of the Second World War quotes Rommel’s scornful comment about British tank tactics: “What difference does it make if you have two tanks to my one, when you spread them out and let me smash them in detail? You presented me with three brigades in succession.” Alexander Cadogan, second in command of the Foreign Office, wrote in his diary, “Our soldiers are the most pathetic amateurs, pitted against professionals . . . The Germans are magnificent fighters and their Staff are veritable Masters of Warfare.” He added, “Our army is the mockery of the world.”
WWI’s carnage obliterated God knows how much generational talent and genius and no doubt contributed to the caution of IGS. Yet there was an understanding among many junior officers coming up that future wars would be ones of maneuver. British inter-war military exercises to develop tactics were closely studied by the German general staff and by another far-sighted warrior, Charles de Gaulle. Churchill, who had himself played an early role in experimenting with tanks, admitted in his memoirs that he forgotten all that, and the senior military leadership never learned it.
The British had a saying through the course of empire to explain how they survived all of the bungling . “We lose every battle but the last one.”

http://www.amazon.com/The-Great-Lia…=1406465816&sr=8-1&keywords=jerry jay carroll

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