There was little to romanticise in 20th-century warfare, as detailed in Alamein: War Without Hate. The bloody stalemate of the First World War trenches and the stark confrontation between a genocidal dictatorship and the forces of democracy in the Second World War could not be given the gloss of "chivalry" and "fair play" applied to the less mechanised slaughter of battles in previous centuries. The exception was the North African campaign, the Krieg ohne Hass (War without Hate), as it was described by the German commander Rommel. The myth of a desert war that was somehow "cleaner" and more noble than the fighting on other Second World War fronts has been perpetuated both by veterans of North Africa and by some historians.
In their fine account of the struggle between Rommel's Afrika Korps and Montgomery's Eighth Army which culminated in the second Battle of Alamein, Bierman and Smith replace myth with reality. However, they do show that the desert war was different from the other theatres of war. There is some basis to the myth of the "war without hate" and a good deal of the credit for this can be given to the German commander. Not that Bierman and Smith are primarily interested in the personalities of senior commanders. Even the pen portraits of Rommel and Montgomery are slightly perfunctory. What they want most to do is to provide a clear and readable narrative of events unfolding in North Africa from 1940 to 1943 and how they affected the ordinary soldiers who fought on both sides. In this they have succeeded admirably. Their book refuses to romanticise the desert war but, by giving so striking an account of its reality, does a different kind of justice to the men who fought in it. --Nick Rennison --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"A first class account of the arduous hunt to run Rommel to ground.' -- John Crossland, Sunday Times, best military history books of 2002
'A new definitive account of the desert battle.' -- Daily Mail, September 2002
'Excellent...A remarkabled achievement...Few historians write as fluently as Bierman and Smith...one of the most successful Western Desert narratives.' -- John Keegan in Daily Telegraph, October 2002
'Peppered with... fascinating insights...and the authors manage to fill the entire canvas of the desert war.' -- Herald, September 2002
'big pacey read... panorama of the desert fighting up to the sacking of Auchinleck and the arrival of Montgomery.' -- Allan Mallison, The Times, September 2002
This was a gift so cannot comment on its content, The book arrived in perfect condition.Published 8 months ago by Dr. D. S. Gandolfo
I think this book was an excellent choice for me. I wanted to read about the events at Alamein, understand their significance and get an insight into the people involved and what... Read morePublished 17 months ago by Nico
First hand accounts of their experiences by German and Italian as well as British and Commonwealth soldiers add to the fascination of this detailed account of the first defeat of... Read morePublished on 29 Oct. 2012 by James Clayton
I was extremely pleased to read this fine book . My late father served as a wireless operator with the Long Range Desert Group in North Africa . Read morePublished on 16 April 2012 by Alan. J. Reynolds
Great book - very thorough but keeps the history story line going so well that you don't want to put it down. Read morePublished on 30 Jan. 2012 by W. Page
I like these types of history books that use personal anecdotes from soldiers from both sides to spice up the dry facts of the events ... Read morePublished on 5 Dec. 2011 by Colin Powis
Is there ever a war without hate? I doubt it.
However, in the context implied it is a valuable and rare reminder that the demagoguery, pogroms and civilian annihilation... Read more
bought for my father who now at 90yrs old was actually there. he enjoyed reading the book, thoght it was well written and it also broght back some good memories. Read morePublished on 24 Aug. 2011 by colin