Alongside Waterloo and Gettysburg, the Battle of Verdun during the First World War stands as one of history’s greatest clashes. Perfect for military history buffs, this compelling account of one of World War I’s most important battles explains why it is also the most complex and misunderstood.
Although British historians have always seen Verdun as a one-year battle designed by the German chief of staff to bleed France white, historian John Mosier’s careful analysis of the German plans reveals a much more abstract and theoretical approach. From the very beginning of the war until the armistice in 1918, no fewer than eight distinct battles were waged there. These conflicts are largely unknown, even in France, owing to the obsessive secrecy of the French high command.
Our understanding of Verdun has long been mired in myths, false assumptions, propaganda, and distortions. Now, using numerous accounts of military analysts, serving officers, and eyewitnesses, including French sources that have never been translated, Mosier offers a compelling reassessment of the Great War’s most important battle.
Verdun by John Mosier
Awesome Book! Really gets into the nitty gritty of the whole Verdun sector and explains a LOT about why WWI history does not really match with what was really going on, and how and why French disaster after disaster had no appreciable effect. Also explains how the Germans were able to do this to the French for so long, though according to the allies, scraping the bottom of the barrel for all 4 years. Well written, though it gets a little conversational at the end. Better in explaining the myth of the great war than his other book "Myth of the Great War." Well worth the money!
Mosier on Verdun
I was hoping for a good narrative history, with something new to say but I'm sad to say that I got stuck after the umpteenth assertion that generals lie. I teach this simple fact to my students regarding any source and so found nothing new. There were numerous repetitions re: artillery comparisons. This is something I (and others) already knew. Why is this groundbreaking? I obviously missed the whole point somewhere and I beg the pardon of the reader who enjoyed the book. Please do not let my disappointment stop you from reading Mosier's work or (I am sure) all the other books that will be churned out over the next year.