Academic journal article Military Review

Alamein

Academic journal article Military Review

Alamein

Article excerpt

ALAMEIN, Jon Latimer, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 2002,338 pages, $17.95.

Jon Latimer's Alamein is an excellent companion to Rick Atkinson's An Armv at Dawn: The War in Africa, 1942-1943 (Henry Holt & Co., New York, 2002). Latimer does not focus on the battle per se, instead he places the battle in the overall strategic and operational context. In a fair and judicious manner, he discusses Field Marshall Bernard Law Montgomery's role and analyzes Montgomery's preparation for battle and the decisions he made during the battle.

Latimer also extensively discusses the British fight in North Africa that led up to Alamein and includes background material on doctrine, organization, training, and material. He also discusses the complementary air and naval interdiction campaigns in the Mediterranean, the role of intelligence, the contributions of Commonwealth allies, the constraints political leaders imposed, and the British Army's command problems.

The book illustrates the following important theoretical constructs, such as when-

* German Field Marshall Erwin Rommel reached a culminating point in his advance to Alamein.

* British Field Marshal Claude Auchinleck experienced an operational pause after Rommel reached Alamein. …

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