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The Real German War Plan, 1904-14 [Paperback]

Terence Zuber
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
Price: £14.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

6 Jan 2011
The real German War Plan 1904-14

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Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: The History Press (6 Jan 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752456644
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752456645
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 15.5 x 1.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 318,495 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Terence Zuber is a retired army officer who spent eight years conducting counterintelligence operations against the Stasi. He is the author of The Battle of the Frontiers, German War Planning 1891-1914, and The Months Myth.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Revealing and convincing 23 July 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
In this book, written on the basis of all surviving evidence about German war planning, Terence Zuber shows convincingly that German strategy on the Western front did not include a plan for a decisive strategic victory against France in 1914, period. This was because the German General Staff was convinced that Germany lacked the numerical superiority required for such an attempt. Zuber shows that the famous "Schlieffen Plan" was in fact a theoretical study which contained a proof of its own impossibility, because Schlieffen included more than twenty non-existing German divisions in his "plan". This was a desperate, and ultimately unsuccessful, plea for Germany to introduce a more complete system of conscription and to raise the units Schlieffen believed were necessary for achieving a rapid victory against France. The actual German war plan, put into effect by Schlieffen's successor, the younger Moltke, is shown by Zuber to have been based on the concept of the counterstroke, waiting for the French to take the offensive first and thus reveal their forces. The result of this sober approach to the realities rather than the mythology of German strategic planning in 1914 is a reappraisal that may be disappointing not only to many armchair strategists but was something most actors on both sides wanted to hide after the final German defeat in World War One: namely, that there was no "failure of the Schlieffen plan" in 1914, simply because there was no "Schlieffen plan" in the first place, and, as a consequence, there also was no "miracle on the Marne", as the German offensive had already run out of steam when the Allied counterattack happened. Read more ›
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Anti-Schlieffen Plan continues 23 April 2011
By Mr. Mice Guy TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
In Dr Zuber's previous book - Inventing the Schlieffen Plan: German War Planning 1871-1914 - he put forward his theory that the Schlieffen Plan was invented after the war by members of the German General Staff to explain away their defeat, by blaming army officers who were too dead to answer back. Most of the original plans and papers were destroyed during the Second World War, and only fragments survive in various archives. Dr Zuber collated as many as he could find to create a study of German war planning in the decades from the Franco-German War up to the opening of the Great War. It is a persuasive argument. Some new documents have come to light since his first book, and he has taken the opportunity to present an updated study of German war planning in the period 1904-1914. In his footnotes, he remarks that "While 85% of this book consists of new material, it has been necessary to reprint some of my previously published book". He has also presented translations of his evidence, unlike many of the pro-Schlieffen Plan writers. Note that Schlieffen himself here criticises suggestions for large German forces swinging around the northern flank of the front. See Dr Zuber's German War Planning, 1891-1914: Sources and Interpretations (Warfare in History).

The Chapters are:
The Real German War Plan, 1904-14
Schlieffen's Last War Plans, 1891-1904:
1904/05; 1905/06; 1906/07.
The War Planning of the Younger Moltke, 1906-14:
1907/08; 1908/09; 1909/10; 1910/11; 1911/12; 1912/13; 1913/14; 1914/15.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Schlieffen and after 5 Mar 2011
Format:Paperback
A thoughtful and provocative analysis of Imperial Germany's war plans leading up to the outbreak of the first world war. The book ruthlessly demolishes many preconceived ideas which I had believed in for many years. The author is to be congratulated for this fresh look at an always absorbing topic.
Highly recommended.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Part ? of an academic cat fight. 1 July 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I can't get enough of trying to understand what drove Europe to 'civil war' in 1914. I'm a WW1 battlefield guide. It's my job to know this stuff.

What continues to interest me is the local European political decisions that war was the best option to settle the differences between France, Germany and Russia.

This was what I hoped to find in this book. A war plan - the military side of things - must also deal with the political reasons why a war plan should exist at all. This is touched on by Zuber in his presentstion of each succeeding year's German war plan but as the engine driving the military machine, the political situation over the years 1900-1914 in Europe receives far less attention than it deserved.

This book is a detailed analysis of plans and war games drawn up by Schlieffen, both Moltkes and others of the German High Command from late in the 1890s to 1914. This comprises about 80% of the book. It makes tedious and repetitious reading for anyone not involved with the academic analysis of this subject. An irritatingly common problem in this book is the copy & paste of sentences and paragraphs that have been lifted out of the author's previous work. He does acknowledge that some material from earlier books has been used but it has been used very badly, with minimal editing.

The author does not believe "The Schlieffen Plan", as illustrated by the West Point Academy 'Schlieffen Plan map' and accepted as 'common knowledge', existed. He goes to great lengths to prove his point. Much of this is refutations of other authors' books and papers, with references to newly available German archives.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Germany's preparation for war.
Maybe it's the translation, maybe it's the writer; perhaps a bit of both, but i gave up with this book after the first chapter. It's probably
better used as a reference book.
Published 1 month ago by mike pontet
2.0 out of 5 stars The real German War Plan, 1904-14
Good reading. Seemed to be from the German pint of View which is only to be expected as the author had access to German records as well as other countries. Read more
Published 4 months ago by michael elliott
4.0 out of 5 stars A Stunning Victory
Mr Zuber reviews the available records and demonstrates convincingly that the "Schlieffen Plan", back-bone of the assertion of German aggression in the build up to WWI, is... Read more
Published 10 months ago by A. Perry
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent tour de force
This book is a mine of detail and well worth reading if the topic is of interest and if you agree with Zuber's basic premise which is that there never was a Schlieffen Plan in... Read more
Published 16 months ago by The Wargamorium
4.0 out of 5 stars for military stundents
Primarily for military students and those interested in the way armies have to be handled but also a good insight into the length plans had been under construction
Published 17 months ago by MICHAEL A GIBBS
4.0 out of 5 stars What was the point?
Surely an outfit as professionally efficient as the German General Staff knew that Schlieffen's plan was flawed, and that they were seriously under strength for the task? Read more
Published 20 months ago by Geoffrey Peters
1.0 out of 5 stars Poor quality edition
Great thesis, but sub standard 'print on demand' edition, warped and wobbly photocopy. Printed by Amazon. Heres the deal, I like a good quality book. Read more
Published 21 months ago by XIII Warrior
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