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Comment: Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press
Date of Publication: 1993
Binding: paperback
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Description: Softcover, appears unread, no spine crease. Not ex. library. 288 pages, index. Offers a new picture of Hitler's conduct in World War II and a reinterpretation of the course of the war. Stolfi argues, that but for one fateful decision by Hitler, which gave the defenders of Moscow time to regroup, Germany could have won the war in the summer of 1941. Contents clean, tight and bright.
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Hitler's Panzers East: World War II Reinterpreted Paperback – 27 Sep 1993


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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press; New edition edition (27 Sept. 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0806125810
  • ISBN-13: 978-0806125817
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.8 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,236,130 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
Could the Second World War have been won by operational decisiveness, daring, and surprise, or was it preordained that the logistical enterprises of the Western Allies and the systematic battering of the Soviets would triumph? Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Tom MacFarlane on 14 Feb. 2005
Format: Paperback
Stolfi's thesis is that Hitler lost the war when he failed to
launch an attack on Moscow in August 1941.
The author argues that (a) Hitler had the capability of attacking Moscow, and that conditions favoured
such an attack: first, the weather problems which Operation Typhoon met in November and December 1941
would not have been present, and (b) Hitler gave Stalin time to reinforce Moscow's defences.
There can be no argument about the weather, but Stalin only brought Zhukov's Far Eastern troops to the defence of
Moscow in reponse to Operation Typhoon, something he could equally have done in August or September.
Finally, Stolfi pays insufficient attention to the flank problems that might well have threatened an earlier
attack, and which are cited by other authors, such as Heinz Magenheimer in his book "Hitler's War".
I found the constant repetition of his central thesis, without additional support, less than convincing.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 23 Nov. 1998
Format: Paperback
Stolfi's analysis is both innovative and excellent. Like Holmes, he notices the clue of the "barking dog in the night." Watson says, "But there was no dog barking in the night." "Precisely," says Holmes.
Stolfi's thesis is that at the end of July the Soviets were on the ropes. There was nothing between the Germans and Moscow which could have stopped them. Everyone was champing at the bit to go for the jugular, i.e. Moscow. Take Moscow and the entire Eastern Front would be turned inside-out. The Red armies in the North and South would be on exterior lines, forced to fight on reversed fronts, without direct communications with each other. Continued Russian resistance no doubt depended on continued existence of the hated Communist regime, which was by that time very doubtful. With the Germans reported at Khimki, there were open incidents of rebellion in the streets.
To criticize Stolfi for repetition is to misunderstand the nature and obligations of logical argument and marshalling of evidence. He takes the case from each of several decisive perspectives and determines that no matter how you look at it, the Germans had the Russian campaign won at the end of July -- and with it, WW II. Defeating Russia, and thus obtaining the resources necessary to for the strategic forces buildup which Germany had not completed before 1939 (and these resources would have been secure from Allied bombing), Germany would have been able to turn West again, never fighting on more than one front (which was merely a variation on the classic German strategic theme that it must never fight a war on two fronts).
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 30 Mar. 1998
Format: Paperback
This book contains excellently researched supportive material. The eastern front of WWII has been described as one of the most extrodinary wars of all. Labelled 'The Great Patriotic War' by the Russians, much of the USSR statstics have been altered by that government. Mr.Stolfi takes another look at this great and terrible conflict. Statistically and realistically the author examines both The Wehrmact and Red Army's capabilities from the beginning of 'Barbarossa' to the end of 1941. Could Army Group Center of the German Army have marched on Moscow in August, 1941? What would have been the ramifications of this strategy? What are the misconceptions of this conflict? All of these questions are elaborated on in sufficient detail.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Mr. R. J. Jepps on 22 Dec. 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
On first reading I found this book both heavy going and badly flawed. There is a lot of repetition which obscures the arguments, and the "what if" sections are written in the past tense, which I found both confusing and dangerous when using this work as a reference. For example "By 10 October, the Germans commanded most Soviet territory up to the Volga River. The seizure of Moscow, the advance beyond it, ...". Of course the Germans didn't seize Moscow - so be careful when reading the chapter "Constructing an alternative historical past".
I think the book would be better without this chapter, as it is self-defeating to argue that the Germans could have won, when the rest of the book argues convincingly that Hitler's psychology would prevent the German forces from fully exploiting their advantage in military doctrine that might otherwise have provided the means to achieve final victory.
Having said all this, the book also contains some highly original insights into Hitler's psychology, that provide convincing explanations for those of Hitler's actions that are considered inexplicable blunders in conventional historical thinking.
The repetition has to be forgiven if the book is to survive sustained academic scrutiny. I am not sure that the book's theories will necessarily prevail over the conventional. However, the book did provide a key to unlock Hitler's reasons for confronting the Allied powers and the decisions that provoked the declaration of war in 1939.
I think that for its originality, if not its readability, this book deserves its five stars.
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