Customer Reviews for

The Father of Us All: War and History, Ancient and Modern

Average Rating 3
( 8 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(1)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(2)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 1
  • Posted May 15, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    The Classics and Modern Military History

    In this book of short, readable essays (though a few show signs of hasty writing), classical scholar and military historian Victor Davis Hanson uses ancient and early modern military campaigns, such as the Peloponnesian Wars and the battle of Lepanto (1571), to give us new perspectives on current wars. He laments today's lack of academic interest in military history, an ignorance that he thinks leaves us ill-prepared to understand what is going on now.

    Hanson thinks that wars, ancient and modern, arise from motives that are part of human nature: leaders think that they can get what they want by going to war because they don't perceive any credible deterrence. He rejects the prevalent academic idea that wars arise from fears and misunderstandings between people that could be overcome by wise negotiation.

    Many of his essays develop what he sees as enduring features of military history by drawing on ancient and modern examples. For example, in democracies, public support for wars changes quickly with perceived success or failure: Lincoln, newly popular after Vicksburg and Gettysburg, probably would have lost the 1864 election, and the war, had Sherman not taken Atlanta. Naturally Hanson applies this lesson, and others, to present-day wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In the same vein he reminds us that serious political, strategic, tactical, technological, and intelligence gathering lapses also occurred in our prior wars: at the Bulge, at Okinawa, in Korea. Thus today's blunders are not unique, nor fatal to achieving our aims. An epilogue chapter examines what is new in 21st-century war: on the one hand robot drones save our troops from enemy fire, and on the other hand readily-available automatic weapons and improvised bombs make terorists hard to fight: the advantage may be shifting to the defense. Meanwhile we worry that we mustn't cause enemy casualties disproportionate to the injuries they cause us because world public opinion wouldn't like it, an idea he finds unfathomable.

    Hanson's informed and insightful discussions of military campaigns are worth reading for their own sake, apart from their applications. He supplements these accounts with historiographic essays and book reviews. Thucydides seems to be his special hero, but he also discusses an action movie portraying the Spartan defense of Thermopylae, which he liked. Someone who wants to explore these topics further will find this section helpful.

    10 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 1