Military history

Notes and references

All quotations in the text based upon the author’s interviews with individuals are given specific references on the subject’s first mention, but not thereafter unless there are grounds for confusion between personal interview quotations and those not listed in the bibliography.


1 Lessons of Normandy, Liddell Hart; essay in LH papers, King’s College, London


1 This narrative is based entirely upon an interview with Lt-Col. John Warner,

1. ‘Much the greatest thing we have ever attempted’

1 Fraser, Alanbrooke, p. 397

2 Bryant, Triumph in the West, p. 205

3 Howard, Grand Strategy, vol. iv, p. 252

4 Harrison, Cross Channel Attack, p. 10

5 Ehrman, Grand Strategy, vol. v, p. 108

6 Ibid., p. 109

7 Ibid., pp. 109 et seq.

8 US CoS papers, ABC 384, Europe: 5.viii.43

9 Ehrman, Grand Strategy, p. 43

10 Portal Papers, Christchurch College, Oxford, File 2, 2g

11 Howard (op. cit.), p. 249

12 For instance, see Grigg, 1943: The Victory that Never Was; Walter Scott Dunn, Second Front Now – 1943

13 See Nigel Nicolson, Alexander, p. 211

14 Bryant (op. cit.), p. 160

15 Public Record Office WO205/33

16 PRO WO205/2

17 Ibid.

18 Ibid.

19 PRO WO205/33

20 Ibid.

21 Fraser (op. cit.), p. 421

22 Eisenhower, diary

23 For an extreme example, see Irving, The War Between the Generals (London, 1981), which highlights the squabbles within the Allied high command and the personal vices of its commanders to a degree which obscures the extraordinary co-operation on the military issues that mattered.

24 Eisenhower, diary

2. Preparations


1 Omar Bradley, A Soldier’s Story, p. 171

2 Ibid., p. 176

3 Interview with the author, vi.83

4 Ronald Lewin, Wavell: The Chief (London, 1980)

5 Russell Weigley, Eisenhower’s Lieutenants, p. 37

6 Quoted in Hamilton, Montgomery: Master of the Battlefield, p. 513

7 Palmer, Wiley & Keast, Procurement and Training of Ground Combat Troops, p. 258

8 Ehrman, Grand Strategy, p. 50

9 PRO WO205/118

10 Williams, interview with the author,

11 PRO WO205/118

12 Ibid.

13 Interview with the author

14 PRO WO232/1

15 Some special forces, above all the US Rangers and the French SAS parachuted into Brittany, made a notable contribution on D-Day and in the weeks that followed. But their story has been repeated so often in earlier narratives of OVERLORD that it seems redundant to retrace the story in detail here.

16 Quoted in Hamilton (op. cit.), pp. 562 et seq.

17 Ibid.

18 See Aron, De Gaulle Before Paris; François Kersaudy, Churchill and De Gaulle (London, 1981). None of the parties concerned emerge with great credit from the pre-D-Day struggle concerning the future administration of liberated France, the Americans showing extraordinary insensitivity by their determination to treat her as if she were bankrupt stock purchased in blood from some global liquidator, rather than one of the great nations of the world.


1 Harris quoted in Hastings, Bomber Command, p. 257

2 Craven & Cate, The US Army Air Forces in World War II, vol. ii, p. 735

3 Hastings (op. cit.), p. 275

4 Carl F. Spaatz, diary, 21.i.44, in Spaatz papers, Box 15, Library of Congress

5 Spaatz papers, Box 14 (loc. cit.)

6 Quesada, interview with the author, 5.vii.83

7 Ibid.

8 Gavin, interview with the author, 8.vii.83

9 Vandenberg, diary, 24.iii.83, MS Division, Library of Congress

10 PRO WO216/139


1 Wilson, interview with the author,

2 Ibid.

3 Gosling, interview with the author,

4 Richardson, interview with the author, 21.vii.83

5 Priest, interview with the author (pseudonym at subject’s request),

6  Portway, interview with the author, 13.vii.83

7 Heal, interview with the author,

8 Bramall, interview with the author,

9 PRO WO216/101

10 Bach, interview with the author,

11 Weigley, Eisenhower’s Lieutenants, p. 31

12 Patton, War as I Knew it, p. 336

13 Butcher, diary, unexpurgated MS, Eisenhower Library

14 et seq. Higgins, interview with the author, 3.vii.83

15 et seq. Herman, interview with the author, 3.vii.83

16 Pre-war American tactical doctrine dictated that forces advance with the weight of their fighting power centred in valleys, their flanks on hilltops. This proved absurd in the face of German defenders who invariably concentrated their strength on available high ground.

17 Colacicco, interview with the author, 6.vii.83

18 Bradley (op. cit.), pp. 226–7

19 Marshall, on sacking corps commanders

20 Colacicco, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

21 Herman, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

22 Walsh, interview with the author, 1.vii.83

23 et seq. Raymond, interview with the author, 2.vii.83

24 Svboda, interview with the author, 3.vii.83

25 Papers of Admiral Allen G. Kirk, US Navy Archives, Washington DC

26 Original letter in possession of Herman

27 Quoted in Hamilton (op. cit.), p. 570

28 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 223

29 inter alia Gavin, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

30 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 209

31 et seq. Reisler, interview with the author, 5.vii.83


1 Warlimont, Inside Hitler’s Headquarters, p. 403

2 Ehrman (op. cit.), p. 108

3 Ibid., pp. 406–7

4 Ibid.

5 To the Dominions Secretary; Churchill, vol. v (op. cit.), p. 602

6 Cruickshank, Deception in World War II, p. 186

7 German forecasting was drastically impeded by the loss of their outlying weather stations. Their blindness in meteorology, as in military intelligence, contributed directly to the German high command’s unpreparedness on D-Day. Where Group-Captain Stagg and his colleagues had predicted the ‘window’ of reasonable weather which would follow the poor conditions prevailing in the Channel on 5 June, their German counterparts had not.

8 In the British press, drawing entirely unwarranted conclusions from material contained in West, MI6: British Secret Intelligence Service Operations 1909–45

9 To the author, 25.ix.83

10 Most sensationally, Irving, The Trail of the Fox; Cave-Brown, Bodyguard of Lies

11 Cruickshank (op. cit.), p. 213

12 To the author,

13 Irving, Trail of the Fox, p. 320

14 Interview with the author, 3.v.83

15 Schaaf, interview with the author, 4.v.83

16 Ibid.

17 Interview with the author, 2.v.83

18 Guderian, Panzer Leader, p. 332

19 Interview with the author, 6.v.83

3. To the Far Shore


1 Quoted in Harrison, Cross Channel Attack, p. 274

2 Combat narrative from Cota papers in Eisenhower Library

3 Letter to the author, 16.iii.82

4 This, and all subsequent F. O. Richardson quotations, from unpublished narrative loaned to the author, or interview of 2.vii.83

5 Quoted in Hamilton, Montgomery: Master of the Battlefield, p. 561

6 See note 7 to Chapter 2, DEFENDERS

7 For instance, Cooper, The German Army: Its Political and Military Failure 1933–45, p. 502

8 Interview with the author, 6.viii.83

9 Gosset & Lecomte, Caen pendant la Bataille, p. 26

10 Extract loaned to the author

11 Barrett, privately printed narrative on The First Ship Sunk on D-Day, loaned to the author

12 Ibid.

13 Diary loaned to the author

14 Williams, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

15 Fraser, Alanbrooke, p. 423

16 Interview with the author, 4.vii.83


1 Quoted in Carell, Invasion – They’re Coming, pp. 49 et seq.

2 Ibid., pp. 80 et seq.

3 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 270

4 Ibid.

5 Interview with the author, 3.vii.83

6 Interview with the author, 1.vii.83

7 Letter to the author

8 Rehm, interview with the author, 3.vii.83

9 Cota papers, combat narrative (op. cit.)

10 Ibid.

11 For example, see Wilmot, Struggle for Europe; Howarth, Dawn of D-Day

12 Wilmot, Struggle for Europe, pp. 253 et seq.


1 ;Unpublished narrative loaned to the author

2 ;Unpublished narrative loaned to the author


1 Warlimont, Inside Hitler’s Headquarters, p. 431

2 Narrative published in the regimental magazine of the King’s Own Shropshire Light Infantry

3 I Corps operational order in PRO W0171/258

4 Carell (op. cit.), p. 106

5 Diary loaned to the author

6 Bradley, A General’s Life, p. 253

7 Craven & Cate, The US Army Air Forces in World War II, vol. iii, p. 181

4. The British Before Caen


1 Quoted in Brett-Smith, Hitler’s Generals, p. 162

2 Schaaf, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

3 Stacey, The Victory Campaign, vol. iii, p. 133

4 Ibid., p. 137

5 Raymond, interview with the author,

6 Hamilton, Montgomery: Master of the Battlefield, p. 631

7 Ibid., p. 596

8 Williams, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

9 Wilson, Flamethrower, pp. 74–5


1 Author’s interview with 7th Armoured eye-witness

2 Fergusson, The Black Watch and the King’s Enemies, p. 206

3 Salmud, History of the 51st Highland Division (Edinburgh, 1953), p. 144

4 Kortenhaus, interview with the author, 6.iv.83

5 Hamilton (op. cit.), p. 649

6 Carell (op. cit.), p. 169

7 Peter Roach, The 8.15 To War (London, 1982), pp. 138–9

8 Lockwood, interview with the author, 9.xi.82

9 Carver, interview with the author,

10 Dempsey, interview with Chester Wilmot, Liddell Hart papers, King’s College, London


1 Woollcombe, Lion Rampant, p. 49

2 Bramall, interview with the author,

3 Woollcombe (op. cit.), p. 60

4 Baker, unpublished narrative loaned to the author

5 Richardson, interview with the author, 21.vii.83

6 Dyson, interview with the author, 28.i.83

7 Wilson, interview with the author, 14.ii.83

8 Priest, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

9 Montgomery, interview with Wilmot, Liddell Hart papers, King’s College, London

10 For instance, Hamilton (op. cit.)

11 Ibid., p. 590

12 Quoted in Ellis, Normandy, p. 261

13 Leigh-Mallory, diary, PRO AIR 37

14 Brooke, diary, 31.iii.43; Bryant (op. cit.), p. 297

15 PRO CAB106/1092, 15.vii.44

16 Quoted in Hamilton (op. cit.), pp. 714–15

17 War Office, Current Reports From Overseas, 8.vii.44, Staff College Library

18 Ibid., no. 44

19 Interview with the author,

20 PRO WO205/118

21 C-in-C’s order quoted in Current Reports from Overseas (op. cit.)

22 Ibid., no. 54

23 PRO WO208/3193

24 Current Reports (op. cit.), no. 58

25 PRO WO208/393. For a further fascinating, damning but unbiased view of British tactics and of the British army’s general performance in Normandy, see the notes of Brigadier James Hargest, New Zealand observer with XXX Corps, in PRO CAB 106/1060

26 Richardson, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

27 Grigg papers, Churchill College, Cambridge. The name of the commanding officer concerned is given in the document, but is omitted here to spare personal embarrassment.

28 Ibid.

29 Lessons of Normandy, Liddell Hart papers, King’s College, London

30 Williams, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

5. The Americans Before Cherbourg


1 Gavin, On to Berlin, p. 121

2 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 280

3 Cota papers, Combat narrative (loc. cit.)

4 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 295

5 Ibid., p. 283

6 Richardson, narrative (loc. cit.)

7 Ibid.

8 Eichen, interview with the author, 7.vii.83

9 Cota (op. cit.)

10 Ibid.

11 Cota (loc. cit.)

12 Herman, unpublished narrative loaned to the author

13 Ibid.

14 Bryant, interview with the author, 9.vii.83

15 First Army diary, copy held in DDE Library

16 It is an apparent paradox that while all the combatants in Normandy agreed upon the prodigious scale of Allied resources, the Allied high command complained of constant difficulties with supplies, above all artillery ammunition. Many observers both at the time and since have suggested that the ammunition shortages could readily have been remedied had the vast shipments of rations, equipment, vehicles been moderated somewhat, especially on the American flank. But the scale of supplies provided for the Allied forces reflected a philosophy determined many months before D-Day.

17 Preston, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

18 Collins, Lightning Joe, p. 220

19 First Army diary


1 Carell, Invasion – They’re Coming, p. 194

2 Herman, narrative (loc. cit.)

3 Bryant, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

4 Hughes, diary

5 Palmer, Wiley & Keast, The Procurement and Training of Ground Combat Troops, p. 1

6 First US Army Report of Operations, p. 117

7 PRO WO205/401

8 PRO W0232/17

9 Gavin (op. cit.), p. 71

10 Interview with the author, iv.83

11 Gavin (op. cit.), p. 71

12 Weigley, Eisenhower’s Lieutenants, p. 45

6. The German Army: Stemming the Tide


1 PRO219/1908

2 Schickner, interview with the author, 3.iv.83

3 Harrison, Cross Channel Attack, p. 374

4 Kruger, interview with the author, 30.iv.83

5 PRO WO219/1908

6 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 292

7 Quoted in Irving, Trail of the Fox, p. 340

8 Ibid., p. 343

9 Ibid.

10 PRO WO205/1021 (Dietrich interrogation)

11 Kauffmann, interview with the author, 4.v.83

12 Irving (op. cit.), p. 346

13 Ibid., p. 351

14 Ibid., p. 353

15 Ibid., pp. 363–4

16 PRO WO205/1022 (von Rundstedt interrogation)

17 Irving (op. cit.), p. 74

18 Ruge, quoted in Irving (op. cit.), p. 375

19 Ibid.

20 Ibid., p. 376

21 Williams, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

22 Hellmuth Lang, interview with the author, 6.v.83

23 For instance, Cave Brown and Irving (op. cit.)

24 Kauffmann, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

25 Kruger, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

26 Guderian, interview with the author, 4.v.83

27 Williams, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

28 Quesada, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

29 PRO WO219/1908

30 Dupuy, A Genius for War, pp. 253–4

31 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 357


1 PRO WO205/5b

2 Quoted in Hamilton, Montgomery: Master of the Battlefield, pp. 713–14

3 Kay Summersby, diary, 2.vii.83

4 Gavin, On to Berlin, p. 51

5 Discarding sabot was a formidable British innovation in armour-piercing ammunition. The casing of the shell was shed after leaving the gun-barrel, and only a slender bolt of hardened steel continued to the target at very high velocity, generating unprecedented power of penetration. Discarding-sabot ammunition had been available for some time for 6-pounder guns, but became available for 17-pounders only in the summer of 1944. It has been one of the principal forms of anti-armour projectile ever since.

6 Wilson, Flamethrower, p. 54

7  Ross, The Business of Tanks, p. 153

8 Ibid.

9 Ibid., p. 263

10 ORS reports nos. 12 & 17, Staff College Library

11 Ross (op. cit.), p. 275

12 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 320

13 et seq. Hansard

14 Ross (op. cit.), pp. 316–17

7. The Battlefield


1 Letter loaned to the author by Mr James Verrier

2 See, for instance, Dunn, Second Front Now; Hartcup, Code Name Mulberry

3 Ibid.

4 See Fergusson, The Watery Maze

5 Patton, War as I Knew It, p. 101

6 Baldwin, MS (op. cit.)

7 Lee, interview with the author, 4.iii.83

8 Hein, interview with the author, 1.vii.83

9 Zimmer, diary from Hoover Institute, S644D/1.5.202

10 Gunther, interview (loc. cit.)

11 Gosset & Lecomte, Caen pendant la Bataille, p. 51

12 Quesada, interview (loc. cit.)

13 Ratliff, interview with the author, 3.vii.83

14 Ivon-Jones, interview with the author, 4.ii.83

15 Sadi Schneid, Beutesdeutscher, p. 119

16 Wilson, interview (loc. cit.)

17 Whitelaw, interview with the author, 27.vii.83

18 Sir David Cole, Rough Road to Rome (London, 1982), p. 82

19 Current Notes (op. cit.), no. 44

20 Brown, interview with the author, 18.ii.83

21 Preston, interview (loc. cit.)

22 Current Notes (op. cit.) for 8.vii.44

23 Hansen, diary, US Army Military History Institute

24 Current Notes (op. cit.), no. 54

25 Wilson, interview with the author (loc. cit.)


1 Brenda McBryde, A Nurse’s War (London, 1979), pp. 86–7

2 Copy loaned to the author

3 Wilson, Flamethrower, p. 70

4 Higgins, interview (loc. cit.)

5 Bramall, interview (loc. cit.)

6 Whitelaw, interview (loc. cit.)

7 Letter loaned to the author by Mr James Verrier

8 Wilson (op. cit.), p. 71

8. Crisis of Confidence


1 Quoted in Wilmot, The Struggle for Europe, p. 338

2 Gosset & Lecomte, Caen pendant la Bataille, p. 37

3 Ibid.

4 Portway. interview with the author, 16.v.83

5 DF: Defensive Fire – a standard gunnery technique whereby batteries designate certain likely lines of enemy attack by code numbers, and range in upon them in advance. Then, when an attack develops, men in the forward positions can summon immediate artillery support at a threatened point by radioing simply to the guns for ‘DF63’ or ‘DF14’, rather than having to waste precious minutes correcting the gunners’ aim onto map coordinates from scratch.

6 Zimmer, diary (loc. cit.)

7 Stephens, unpublished MS loaned to author

8 Butcher, diary, DDE Library

9 Eisenhower Papers, vol. iii, p. 1982

10 Bryant (op. cit.), p. 229

11 Tedder, With Prejudice, p. 555

12 Colliers’ Magazine, 5.x.46

13 Note of 18.iii.52 in Dempsey file, Liddell Hart papers (loc. cit.)

14 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 319


1 Montgomery to Brooke, M511

2 Quoted in Pogue, The Supreme Command, p. 188

3 Dempsey, notes in Liddell Hart papers, ‘The aims of Operation Goodwood’

4 Roberts, interview with the author,

5 Ibid.

6 Brown, unpublished MS loaned to the author

7 Roach, The 8.15 to War, pp. 144–6

8 Wyldbore-Smith, interview with the author,

9 Richardson, interview with the author, 21.vii.83

10 Quoted in Ellis (op. cit.), pp. 344–5

11 Butcher, diary (op. cit.)

12 Most recently by Hamilton, Montgomery: Master of the Battlefield, and Carlo D’Este, Decision in Normandy

13 Richardson, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

14 The Memoirs of Field-Marshal Lord Montgomery, p. 257

15 Eisenhower Papers (op. cit.), pp. 2018–19

16 Bradley, A General’s Life, p. 274

17 Ibid., p. 257

18 Bryant (op. cit.), p. 235

19 Carver, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

20 Butcher, diary, DDE Library

21 Bryant (op. cit.), p. 245

9. The Breakout


1 First Army diary, 7.vii.44

2 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 271

3 Gunther, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

4 Quesada, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

5 Blumenson, The Patton Papers, vol. ii, p. 521

6 First US Army report (loc. cit.)

7 Interview with the author, 2.vii.83

8 First US Army report (loc. cit.)

9 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 270

10 Bradley, A Soldier’s Story, p. 226

11 Ascher, interview with the author, 5.vii.83

12 In a letter to the author, 3.viii.82

13 Hamilton (op. cit.), p. 650

14 Stimson papers, Yale University

15 This account is derived from information provided by another NCO of 102nd Cavalry Reconnaissance, Bill Walsh.

16 Contemporary narrative by Flint’s executive officer, in DDE papers no. 84, Patton G. no. 2.

17 Carell, Invasion – They’re Coming, pp. 257 et seq.

18 History of the 120th Infantry Regiment by Officers of the Regiment (Washington Infantry Journal Press, 1947)

19 Eichen, interview with the author,

20 Quoted in D. Bruce Lockerbie, A Man Under Orders, p. 79

21 First US Army diary (loc. cit.)

22 History of the 120th (op. cit.), p. 133

23 Carell (op. cit.), p. 259

24 Stober, interview with the author, 6.v.83

25 Weigley, Eisenhower’s Lieutenants, p. 157

26 Gunther, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

27 Reisler, interview with the author, 4.vii.83

28 Guderian, interview with the author (loc. cit.)


1 For instance, see Tedder, With Prejudice; Harris, Bomber Offensive; and the memoirs of other more junior air force officers who wrote in a fashion that suggested it was an indulgence on the part of their service to accept any responsibility for direct support of the armies.

2 Vandenberg, diary, MS Division Library of Congress

3 Tedder (op. cit.), pp. 559–60

4 Ibid., p. 551

5 Ibid., pp. 557–8

6 Ibid., p. 562

7 Ibid., p. 565

8 PRO W0232/51

9 Quesada, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

10 Vandenberg, diary (loc. cit.)

11 PRO W0232/51

12 Vandenberg, diary (loc. cit.)

13 Richardson, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

14 Bradley, A Soldier’s Story, p. 249

15 Richardson, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

16 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 249

17 Account based upon Reisler interview (loc. cit.)

18 Scott, Typhoon Pilot, p. 120

10. The Open Flank

1 Liddell Hart papers, translations of Army Group B and C-in-C West reports, quoted in Cooper, The German Army, p. 507

2 Warlimont, Inside Hitler’s Headquarters, p. 442

3 Ibid., p. 445

4 Ibid.

5 Ibid.

6 Ibid., p. 453

7 PRO WO219/1908

8 Among the strategic theorists, most authoritatively from Basil Liddell Hart, but also from some serving US commanders, such as John ‘P’ Wood (see text below)

9 Hansen, diary, US Army Military History Institute

10 Patton, War as I Knew It, p. 92

11 Ibid., p. 382

12 A remark repeatedly made to me in interviews with veterans of the US First Army of all ranks.

13 Bradley, A General’s Life, p. 285

14 Frank Price, Middleton (Louisiana State University, 1974), p. 188

15 Ibid.

16 Blumenson, Breakout and Pursuit, p. 463

17 Bradley, A Soldier’s Story, p. 367

18 Irving, Hitler’s War, pp. 683–4

19 Carell, Invasion – They’re Coming, p. 278

20 The above account is compiled from the History of the 120th Infantry (op. cit.), interview with Sidney Eichen (loc. cit.), First Army diary (op. cit.).

21 Quoted in Wilmot, The Struggle for Europe, p. 404

22 Ibid., p. 416

23 Liddell Hart papers, translations of Army Group B reports (loc. cit.), quoted in Cooper, p. 510

24 Guderian, Panzer Leader (op. cit.), p. 445

25 Irving (op. cit.), p. 686

26 Warlimont (op. cit.), p. 451

27 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 376

28 Blumenson, Patton Papers (op. cit.), vol ii, p. 521

29 Baker MS (op. cit.)

11. The Road to Falaise

1 Warner, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

2 Richardson, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

3 Signal M69, Montgomery papers, quoted in Hamilton, Montgomery: Master of the Battlefield, p. 768

4 See How, Normandy: The British Breakout

5 Letter to Brooke, 26.vii.83, quoted in Hamilton (op. cit.), p. 780

6 Stacey, The Canadian Army in World War II, vol. iii, p. 275

7 Hamilton (op. cit.), p. 779

8 Ibid.

9 Stacey (op. cit.), p. 252

10 Ibid., p. 263

11 Ibid.

12 Ibid., p. 276

13 Ibid.

14 Ibid., p. 266

12. The Gap

1 PRO WO205/1021 (Interrogation of Meyer)

2 Ibid. (Interrogation of Meindl)

3 Scott (op. cit.), p. 129

4 Woollcombe (op. cit.), p. 107

5 Komarek, unpublished MS loaned to the author

6 For an extreme and extraordinary example of fanciful thinking about the failure wholly to destroy the German army at Falaise, see Richard Rohmer, Patton’s Gap (London, 1981).

7 Bradley (op. cit.), p. 337

8 It is odd that while Chester Wilmot wrote with great frankness in 1952 about the difficulties and shortcomings of the Allied armies in north-west Europe, in more recent years most narratives have focused overwhelmingly upon the alleged virtues and vices of the commanders on both sides, and lapsed into comfortable platitudes when discussing the relative fighting performance of the armies engaged.

9 Stacey, The Canadian Army in World War II, vol. iii, p. 275

10 Liddell Hart, History of the Second World War, p. 543

11 Williams, interview with the author (loc. cit.)

12 Gavin, On to Berlin, p. 121

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