Johnny: The Legend and Tragedy of General Sir Ian Hamilton

Johnny: The Legend and Tragedy of General Sir Ian Hamilton

Johnny: The Legend and Tragedy of General Sir Ian Hamilton

Gallipoli was the brainchild of two brilliant men – Kitchener, the political head of the British Army in 1914 – and Churchill, the political head of the Royal Navy.

Success at Gallipoli would have shortened the First World War by opening up a sea route to Russia and made sure that she remained a powerful ally of Britain and France.

The Gallipoli expedition is judged by most historians to have been a tragic failure, brought about by a host of unexpected misfortunes.

This book demonstrates that the expedition was doomed before it began.

The size of the invading army was too small – which was Kitchener’s fault – and the strategic plan invited defeat – something for which Hamilton had to take the responsibility.

Hamilton’s opponent at Gallipoli was the cool German officer, General Liman von Sanders, whose strategic skills had been developed in the Prussian War Academy.

In contrast, Hamilton was a tactician, never happier than when he was in the thick of battle.

But by 1915 this style of leadership had become an anachronism.

Gallipoli was Hamilton’s last command. During his long retirement he became an important writer on military art and science, and he emerged as a prophet who made a number of astonishing predictions about the future of warfare.

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