- Taschenbuch: 352 Seiten
- Verlag: Vintage (5. November 2013)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 0307743632
- ISBN-13: 978-0307743633
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 13,2 x 2,3 x 20,3 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: Schreiben Sie die erste Bewertung
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Blackett's War: The Men Who Defeated the Nazi U-Boats and Brought Science to the Art of Warfare Warfare (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 5. November 2013
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Praise for Stephen Budiansky's Blackett's War
Recommended Reading, Scientific American
“A fascinating portrayal of how science contributed to winning the war in Europe.”
—The Wall Street Journal
“A terrific story, exciting, illuminating, well told.”
—Dallas Morning News
“Lively and enlightening. . . . Budiansky knowingly and entertainingly re-creates the almost constant struggle between hidebound military traditionalists and the clever civilians who saved them.”
—The Washington Post
“Engaging. . . . A finely wrought and well-sourced social history of elite science’s wartime mobilization. . . . A wonderful revisionist history of how intelligence derived from Bletchley Park’s breakthroughs combined with Blackett’s operational research to bypass and destroy the Nazi Wolfpacks.”
“Budiansky has mastered the difficulties of the story, making it very readable and compelling . . . an important work.”
—New York Journal of Books
“A fascinating and skilful blend of naval warfare, science, and British social history with a richly diverse cast of characters.”
—World War II Magazine
“Little-known story of the Allied scientists whose unconventional thinking helped thwart the Nazi U-boats in World War II . . . An excellent, well-researched account . . . an engrossing work rich in insights and anecdotes.”
—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
“The little known history of a linchpin in the Allies’ victory over the Nazis: Patrick Blackett. . . . For military history and science fans alike.”
Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende
Stephen Budiansky is the author of seventeen books about military history, intelligence and espionage, science, the natural world, and other subjects. His most recent books are Code Warriors: NSA’s Codebreakers and the Secret Intelligence War Against the Soviet Union and Mad Music: Charles Ives, the Nostalgic Rebel.
Budiansky's writing has appeared in The Atlantic, the New York Times magazine and op-ed pages, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, The Economist, and many other publications. He is a member of the editorial board of Cryptologia, the scholarly journal of cryptology and intelligence history, and is on the American Heritage Dictionary’s Usage Panel. He lives on a small farm in Loudoun County, Virginia.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com
Mr. Budiansky tells the story in an engaging and even lively fashion, with a decent level of detail. This remarkable history is complemented with a summary of other aspects of Blackett’s extraordinary career and supporting descriptions of the ridiculous political prejudices and military machinations that, occasionally, threatened his effort, even in the face of its success. Indeed, one senior RAF officer actually dismissed some of the work as “strategy by slide rule.” (He eventually came to his senses.)
I can recommend this book without qualification to anyone interested in history, science or just a good read.
I liked the book. It is well written and I learned a lot, but it was not quite as focused a Budiansky’s previous book on WWII, “Battle of Wits”. However, I enjoyed the breadth of material that was covered. The book serves as a nice adjunct to “Battle of Wits”, complementing it and giving a somewhat different slant on the material. I recommend the book to those interested in WWII history, the application of OR to WWII, and the life of Patrick Blackett.
Blackett and a band of other elite scientists joined in the British war effort and served as a hands on think tank in the fight against Hitler's Germany. Through the new "science" of operational research, this talented group impacted the war effort in many positive ways. The featured contribution was in the battle against the German u-boats which were devastating Britain's merchant fleet and hence her supply lines. Blackett applied statistical analysis and the laws of probability to change conventional wisdom about the size and configurations of convoys--often against the will of the old line naval establishment. Among other achievements, he and his fellow scientists contributed greatly to the use and development of both radar and sonar . They also theorized that bombing civilians was counterproductive. Some of their research was readily accepted. Other parts were ignored or resisted by the military, although most of their suggestions were ultimately implemented with considerable success.
The book has several takeaways including an appreciation for how "new eyes" can often find solutions to problems. In many cases it was not necessarily that the scientists were military geniuses--it was simply that they approached the problems from a different point of view. The internal politics of the war machine was also showcased. I was particularly struck by how deeply entrenched the pacifist and communist movements were in between the wars Britain. And it was interesting to note how both the scientific community as well as citizens in general rallied from their pacifism when they finally realized the enormity of the German menace.
Excellent book. Highly recommend.
Two examples stand out.
One is the demonstration that larger convoys were easier to protect with fewer escorts than were smaller ones and that fewer ships would be lost to U-boats.
Another was the conclusion that hunting the U-boats in the Bay of Biscay was more effective than hunting them in mid-ocean or bombing their concrete pens in coastal France.
Taking nothing away from Turing and the others at Bletchley, this book gives overdue credit to the many scientists whose efforts saved thousands of lives and shortened the war. The terrible shame is that the scientists could not convince the strategic bombing advocates, Sir Arthur Harris on the British side and H. H. "Hap" Arnold on the American, of the ineffectiveness of their efforts which cost so many deaths of allied aircrews and German civilians. But that topic is addressed in detail in another of Budiansky's books, Air Power.