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History Happy Hour

Episode 91: Patton's War: An American General's Combat Leadership

War As I knew It, George S. Patton Patton’s memoirs, which were published after his death. While it is always wise to tread lightly when reading the memoirs of any historical figure, it is always helpful to read about events in the participants own words. Read in conjunction with one of the better biographies listed below.

Fighting Patton: George S. Patton Jr., Through the Eyes of His Enemies, Harry Yeide An interesting take on the thousands of pages written about Patton. The writing is a bit turgid at times, and you get a sense that the author is pushing a bit of his own agenda, but it is hard to fault his research.

Patton: A Genius for War, Carlo D’Este My favorite book on Patton. Great biographical detail, well-written and written by a soldier about a soldier. I like the emphasis on Patton and the art of war-I don’t really care that he swore a lot, wore ivory handled pistols, etc. More or less my go to bio of Patton.

Patton: The Man Behind the Legend 1885-1945, Martin Blumenson Equally as valuable as D’Este’s book. Blumenson was a US Army historian during WW2 and Korea and wrote two volumes of the renowned “Green Book” series of official histories. In addition to his own bio, he also edited The Patton Papers, which are on the shelf of every Patton nut. I only choose D’Este over Blumenson because I think D’Este’s writing style is a bit more contemporary. You can’t go wrong with either bio.

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