Tank Battles of World War I (Hardback)
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Failure to exploit the potential of an original idea is a recurring phenomenon in our national history. Few failures, however, can have been so costly in human life as that of our military commanders early in 1916 to appreciate that the tank was a war winning weapon. The slaughter of the Somme, Passchendaele and Ypres salient had to be endured before accepted 'conventional' methods were abandoned and the tank given a chance.
Bryan Cooper describes the early tank actions in vivid detail, with many eye-witness accounts. He tells of the courage and endurance of the crews not just in battle but in the appalling conditions in which they had to drive and fight their primitive vehicles. Scalded, scorched and poisoned with exhaust fumes, constantly threatened with being burned to death, these crews eventually laid the foundation for the Allied Victory in World War I. The book is well illustrated with many original photographs which give the present day reader a glimpse of the infancy of a dominant weapon of modern war.
Arguably, failure to exploit the potential of an original idea can be viewed as a recurring theme in British history. The author argues however few failures can have been so costly in terms of human lives as that of the military commanders in early 1916 to fully appreciate that the tank was a potentially war winning weapon. The losses on the Somme, Passchendaele and Ypres had to be endured before the accepted conventional methods of warfare were abandoned and the tank was given an opportunity. He describes the early tank actions, drawing on eye witness accounts, as well as noting the courage and endurance of the crews, not just in battle, but in the difficult conditions in which they had to drive and fight their vehicles – scalded, scorched and poisoned with exhaust fumes – as they laid the foundation of the Allied victory.Stuart Asquith, Author
First published in 1974 by Ian Allan Ltd, this book was reprinted in 2014. It is illustrated with original photographs, as well as tactical maps and sketches of various types of tank and their summarised data.
Failure to exploit the potential of an original idea is a recurring phenomenon in our national history. Few failures, however, can have been so costly in human life as that of our military commanders early in 1916 to appreciate that the tank was a war winning weapon. The book is well illustrated with many original photographs which give the present day reader a glimpse of the infancy of a dominant weapon of modern warPennant, Journal of the Forces Pension Society
The first chapter is essentially an introduction and traces the genesis and development of the tank from the British perspective. Cooper touches on all of the major points and provides the reader with a sound historical treatment of the evolution of the tank. Included here is the development of the internal combustion engine and chain tracks, the rigidity of military thinking of the day, the need to break the stalemate of trench fighting, and the small group of dedicated pioneers who brought the tank 'idea' to fruition.Casemate Publishing
The following chapter titles are self-explanatory in that they deal with the battlefield employment of the tank in the British experience. In the beginning, conventional military thought echoed Lord Kitchener's view of the tank as being nothing more than a "pretty mechanical toy". Cooper weaves his story to show how the employment of the tank gradually won over the military establishment, including Haig himself.
The hidden gem in Tank Battles of World War I is how Cooper has woven informative and interesting eye-witness accounts throughout the descriptive text. These eye-witness accounts are superb in illustrating the hardships and experiences endured by those who crewed these early tanks.
The advent of the 100th anniversary of the war has seen several major manufacturers release most of the major tanks of the period in the past two years. If you've caught the World War I modelling bug with the advent of these excellent new kits, you've probably also become inquisitive about how they came to be, how they evolved, and how they were employed. You would do well to read this book as it will answer those questions while providing some good historical photographic coverage for your modelling projects. The eye-witness accounts are worth the price of admission on their own. Highly Recommended.
A well-written, well-researched, and engaging account of a significant aspect of the history of World War One.Destructive Music
The book itself is a true product of time. The writing is no nonsense and punchy... What we have is a fast paced and well researched read... I really like this book and think any students of Great War tanks should read it.War History Online
Now available for the first time in 40 years this well illustrated book has stood the test of time and remains one of the best summaries of World War I tank warfare... One of the most authoritative and readable books on the subject.Tankette
An interesting read and it is great to see this particular title readily available once more.Military Modelling
Very interesting and informative.Suppressing Fire
Gives a classic account of First World War tank warfare and charts how and why tanks became so vital.East Kent Mercury