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Panzer Leader [Anglais] [Broché]

Heinz Guderian
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Descriptions du produit

Présentation de l'éditeur

Heinz Guderian - master of the Blitzkrieg and father of modern tank warfare - commanded the German XIX Army Corps as it rampaged across Poland in 1939. Personally leading the devastating attack which traversed the Ardennes Forest and broke through French lines, he was at the forefront of the race to the Channel coast. Only Hitler's personal command to halt prevented Guderian's tanks and troops turning Dunkirk into an Allied bloodbath.Later commanding Panzergruppe 2 in Operation Barbarossa, Guderian's armoured spearhead took Smolensk after fierce fighting and was poised to launch the final assault on Moscow when he was ordered south to Kiev. In the battle that followed, he helped encircle and capture over 600,000 Soviet troops after days of combat in the most terrible conditions.Panzer Leader is a searing firsthand account of the most effective fighting force in modern history by the man who commanded it. --Ce texte fait référence à une édition épuisée ou non disponible de ce titre.

Biographie de l'auteur

General Heinz Guderian commanded the German panzer forces in Operation Barbarossa, but was dismissed for taking a timely step backward instead of pandering to Hitler's illusions. Guderian was adjudged free of any connection to war crimes, and did not stand trial at Nuremberg. --Ce texte fait référence à une édition épuisée ou non disponible de ce titre.

Détails sur le produit

  • Broché: 552 pages
  • Editeur : Da Capo Press Inc; Édition : Reissue (6 décembre 2001)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0306811014
  • ISBN-13: 978-0306811012
  • Dimensions du produit: 20,9 x 13,9 x 3,7 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 75.775 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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I first saw the light of day at Kulm on the Vistula, one Sunday morning, the 17th of June, 1888. Lire la première page
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 Guderian 11 décembre 2013
Par béneytou
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Livre impeccable livré à temps. Enfin une réédition de ce livre extraordinaire écrit par le plus grand tacticien et stratège des blindés de la Seconde Guerre Mondiale. Évidemment, ce sont les Anglo-saxons qui le rééditent.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.4 étoiles sur 5  74 commentaires
73 internautes sur 76 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Military Historians Dream 6 avril 2000
Par W. B. Smith - Publié sur
Achat vérifié
This book will be of great interest to any military historian. Guderian takes us through the development of the Panzer force both in its formation and tactics and its implementation in the battlefield in the Polish, French and Russian campaigns. There are detailed accounts of his involvement in those campaigns and at times I got a little lost in the geographic references and the poor sketch maps did little to compensate. However,the book is more than that. The book contains an incredible insight into the German High command, Hitler and his cronies and their disasterous blunders such as at Dunkirk and the gross under estimation of Soviet Russia in terms of fighting ability and technology. What I found of special interest was of the recollections of meetings and arguments with Hitler and Guderian's refusal to bow to the Furher's will power. Guderian was dismissed after the failure of the German army at the gates of Moscow in 1941 but his talents could not even be overlooked by Hitler and after further set backs were encountered was recalled to service in 1943. The Allies were fortunate that Guderian's talents were hindered by Hitler's "YES" men, overwise the war could have taken a different course. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in World War Two from a German stand point.
47 internautes sur 50 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 A good memior...but you'll need a grain of salt to go with it. 3 novembre 2009
Par M. G Watson - Publié sur
If you were to make a list of the truly outstanding commanders of the Second World War, Heinz Guderian's name would have to be on it. He was a bold and energetic leader of armor who won many of Germany's most brilliant victories in Poland, France and Russia. More than that, however, he was a pioneer of tank warfare, almost single-handedly responsible for the creation of Hitler's legendary panzer arm, and a tireless proponent of its proper use. If he had never been born, it is entirely possible that WWII would have unfolded in a completely different manner than it did. How many other generals can make that claim?

PANZER LEADER is Guderian's account of his long career as a soldier - first for the German Empire during WWI, second during the Weimar period, and last under the Third Reich. Since the story of Guderian and the story of the panzers are interwoven, he traces the evolution of the tank arm from its humble beginnings after 1918 (outdated armored cars used as flour trucks) to the height of its success during the conquest of France in 1940, and the "cauldron" victories in Russia in 1941, with his own fortunes rising at the same time. Likewise, the failure to defeat the USSR marks the end of Guderian's combat career; sacked by Hitler, he languishes for a year before being recalled as "Inspector General of Armored Troops." This in turn paves the way for his appointment as Chief of the General Staff (No. 2 in the Army hierarchy under Hitler) in 1944, a post he held until the near-end of the war, which gave him a "God's-eye view" of the Eastern Front.

PANZER LEADER is more entertainingly written than many German memoirs, superior in readability to the works of Manstein or Kesselring, and certainly easier to digest than the War Diaries of Bock or Halder. Guderian is blunt, occasionally sarcastic and often humorous in his tale-telling. Although proud to be a Prussian officer, his is also a maverick who never let rank or tradition intimidate him or frustrate his plans: one of his contemporaries, General Hermann Balck, once said that "Guderian only had to see a superior officer and he'd have him gored and writhing on the horn of his ideas." His combative personality led to great tensions with some of his superiors (Kluge, for example) but it also endeared him to his men: he was one of those rare leaders who pushed himself as hard as the "lowliest" private in his command, and he lacked the vindictive streak that somewhat tainted Rommel. In addition to his courage and soldierly qualities, however, he was also true visionary in that he not only translated radical theory into practice, he also worked hard to make grandiose schemes into reality.

It is a huge mistake, however, to take Guderian's memoirs at face-value, for he was a key figure what the Germans refer to today as "the period of self-justification", i.e. the years immediately following the defeat, when surviving Wehrmacht officers tried to place blame for Germany's downfall solely on Hitler, while simultaneously claiming credit for the victories of '39 - '41 (and claiming ignorance of the "security measures" of Himmler & Co.) PANZER LEADER is thus riddled with strategic omissions, questionable claims, and circumlocution that would do a modern-day politician proud. I'll give a few examples here:

A. Guderian places the blame for the notorious "stop order", which probably saved the British Army in France from being captured entire by the Germans, on Hitler, and to some extent on Goering. Fair enough, but he downplays the fact that it was his idol, Rundstedt, who convinced Hitler the panzers were at the end of their mechanical rope and needed to be overhauled and repaired.
B. Guderian's chapter "July 20 and its sequel" is a disgrace. He completely omits his key role in crushing the Stauffenberg plot, as well as his place on the Court of Honor, which stripped military plotters of their rank and protection so they could be handed over to the People's Court of Roland Freisler and hanged with piano wire. He also makes no mention of his oft-quoted comment, upon taking over the General Staff in 1944, that under his command, "there would be no room for anyone who wasn't a National Socialist in outlook." (Likewise, no mention of his comment, "I'm all for racial purity." at a staff conference.)
C. Read his account of the argument he had with Hitler in January or February of 1945 over the issue of evacuating Courland in the Baltic; Guderian claims that Hitler became so enraged by this discussion that he, Guderian, was "very nearly the victim of a physical assault." Then read Albert Speer's (INSIDE THE THIRD REICH) version of this same incident...if Speer is to be believed, it was Hitler who nearly got the black eye.
D. Guderian rails against Hitler for appointing SS chief Himmler as an Army Group Commander in late 1944. But in Gerhard Engel's war diary (published as AT THE HEART OF THE REICH), Engel, Hitler's Army adjudant, records that in 1938, Guderian actually agitated to have either Goering or Himmler named Commander-in-Chief of the Army, "so as to unite the Army with National Socialism." One doesn't hear too much about Guderian's enthusiasm for National Socialism in PANZER LEADER.

The book has other flaws as well. Guderian's tendency, in the later stages of the work, to simply recount events in the manner of a news-ticker, rather than trying to inject any real feeling or overview into them, is tedious, and he occasionally omits interesting little facts, such as the bitter rivalry he had with General v. Schell, or the fact that his beautiful wife played a role in his peacetime success by providing a sweet side to his sourness. Overall, however, he does well, and it is very difficult to put the book down without feelings of intense admiration for his remarkable soldier.

It was tough to say whether this book deserved three or four stars, but since I didn't call Manstein or Mellenthin on their omissions in my reviews of their books, I have to give it four, and I'll close by saying that regardless of its flaws, it's an absolutely indispensable addition to your WW2 collection.
18 internautes sur 18 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Untainted Shield of Wehrmacht? 12 septembre 1997
Par Un client - Publié sur
"Panzer Leader," written by a former Colonel-General of the Wehrmacht, Heinz Guderian, is a fascinating book. It is fascinating in its own right in that it describes Guderian's efforts to create and operate effective all-arms formations including armor, armored infantry and towed (later self-propelled) artillery in spite of the opposition from the more traditional elements of the Wehrmacht. With Hitler's keen interest and help, Guderian succeeded in creating such formations in "Panzerdivisionen" - armored divisions. The subsquent successes which Guderian had as a commander of such formations in Poland, France and Russia make an exciting and informed reading.

However, the book is also fascinating because of the falsehood contained in it. Principally, there are two major "untruths" which often escape notice from the casual reader. The first falsehood is the credit which Guderian attributes to the late Sir Basil H. Liddell Hart as the "founder" of Blitzkrieg "doctrine." Guderian was jailed after the Second World War by the Allied authorities in the West, and it was Sir Liddell Hart who championed his (and other jailed German generals') cause. He brought them gifts and attempted to convince the authorities to free them, and eventually became the editor of their memoirs in the West. Sir Lidell Hart had been indeed an innovator of military doctrine in the 1920's, but he had, by 1930's, rejected the concept of armored warfare as viable. In any case, his reputation had fallen during the war, and this he attempted to salvage rather successfully with the help of the grateful ex-German generals after the war. Hence, Guderian inserted the line crediting Sir Liddell Hart as the founder of Blitzkrieg idea in the English edition of the book (it does not appear in the German edition) which was then edited by Sir Liddell Hart himself. Guderian really deserves the credit for integrating armor, motorized infantry and motorized artillery into an all-arms fighting formation known as Panzer Divisions.

Second major "irregularity" of the book concerns the infamous "Commissar Order." Prior to launching Case Barbarossa, the invasion of Soviet Union, Hitler directed that German forces to eliminate Soviet political officers (and eventually other "undesirables" including Jews) among the captured Soviet POWs. Guderian claims in the book that he did not distribute this order to units under his command, the Second Panzer Group (later the Second Panzer Army) and that hence the order was not carried out in his command. This is an outright lie as was later effectively rebutted by the books written by Professor Omer Bartov. In fact, the Commissar Order was carried out in the Second Panzer Group.

There are other smaller problems. While the account of the war in the book is largely accurate, Guderian often fails to mention that his mistakes were at times reponsible for the failure of military operations under his command. Instead he blames Hitler who, though he shares a large part of the blame, did not make the mistakes alone.

This book was instrumental during the earlier years of the Cold War in implanting the idea that the "Shield of the Wehrmacht" was "untainted" - that it was Hitler and the SS who were responsible for the military failures and the atrocities and that the German army's honor and operational brilliance remained untainted. The book was welcomed in the West because it helped to buttress the argument for the rearming of the Federal Republic of Germany, and because it pointed a way to defeat the Russian "Slavic-Asiatic" hordes with West European operational and tactical brilliance.

We now have a more accurate portrayal of the war available. Nonetheless, the book is useful in that it provides an insight into why the Panzer Division was such an effective instrument of war. The books shows that it was the operational and tactical brilliance of integrating all arms and allowing the unit to deal flexibly with all forms of enemies while maintaining the momentum of operation which made the German armored units so formidable, not the superior number of German tanks during the early years as Sir Churchill inaccurately pointed out in his writings.

At the same time, the reader must understand the context of the book and what it does not contain and what it falsifies. For the shield of the Wehrmacht was tainted with the blood of its victims and occassional military blunders by its commanders. So long as that understanding is present, the book makes an interesting and fascinating military history reading.

James J. Na
26 internautes sur 28 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 A Soldier's Story from the Axis High Command 23 décembre 2001
Par Mannie Liscum - Publié sur
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
General Guderian's book is certainly not for the WWII reader who wants a style like that of Ambrose or Ryan, but it does deliver on sheer content and insight from one of the greatest military minds of the second world war. Guderian is quite humble in his writing considering he was the primary driving force behind development of Germany's Blitzkreig warfare. Had this been written by a personality such as Montgomery I'm sure the feel would have been much different. His descriptions of campaigns in the west and east are often quite moving, but equally as often dry and matter of fact. His writings are not as "moving" or personal as those of Rommel (see The Rommel Papers), but they are full of important information and insights. In particular his closing chapter touches nicely on his feelings of the German High Command, it's members, and leaders of the Nazi party. If you want history as told by a leading member of the German High Command this book will not disappoint. If you want edge of your seat story telling this might not be your cup of tea.
19 internautes sur 21 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Achtung Tank Lovers!!! 27 décembre 2001
Par William Knapp - Publié sur
For anyone who is intersted in armored warfare this is a must read, because Guderian is without a doubt a pioneer of 20th century armor tactics and the father of Germany's Panzer Forces. It was him and military thinkers like him that brought about the concept of mass armored formation as a separate military arm in oppose the spreading out tanks all over as infantry support. The book describes the development of the German Panzer Forces from infancy to full develoment as well its implementation during the WWII. The book is treasure of technical information from the most well knowned to the most obsecure tanks developed in Germany, analyzing both weakness' and strengths of different models. Guderian also gives a very detailed story of the German offensive in Russia of 1941 (until he was dismissed) and he picks up the story in 1943 after his reinstatement to active military duty and describes the events up to very end of the war. Even though the General was man integrity his view of the of the war (recorded at the end) is described from the German point of view and can't help to be a bit biased. Guderain's absolute defence of the honor of the German army leaves the reader a bit skeptical in view of what we know about German atrocities on the eastern front. However none of these faults (that's why i gave it 4 stars) takes away from the richness of information this text provides on development and implementation of massed armor forces for first time in history of warfare. If you are interested in the history of the German-Soviet conflict I would look for a more balanced source eleswhere and leave this book for the armor enthusiest or a reader of military biographies.
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