Dammit, those Amazon people are the devil incarnate! No sooner do I buy one 'yuuuuuuuuge' book than they sneak back into my computer-thingie to tempt me with another - and they are so clever with their timing! As you can gather from my constant (boring?) references to the history of the crusades, I am both fascinated and repelled by the subject. As far as I can judge it is absolutely excellent history but the story it tells is so indicative of the very worst of human behaviours as to be almost sickening! I have reached the end of the first crusade and I am up to my chin in mud, blood, hypocrisy, avarice and fanatical stupidity and I'm not sure I can take any more of it.
Thus, I am open to the temptation offered by those rascals at Amazon who offered me a book today which would be tempting on its own account, let alone as I balk at launching myself into the second crusade! The book on offer is called "On Grand Strategy" and it is written by a top-notch military historian called John Lewis Gaddis from Yale University. Needless to say, on reading the Amazon reviews there are those who praise his book and those who dismiss it. However, the fact that Prof. Gaddis ranges across the historical spectrum of Herodotus, Thucydides, Sun Tzu, Octavian/Augustus, Saint Augustine, Machiavelli, Elizabeth I, Philip II, the American Founding Fathers, Clausewitz, Tolstoy, Lincoln, Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Isaiah Berlin, makes it difficult for an ignoramus like me to ignore. And at least I will not have to wade through the ocean of blood produced by those (so-called) Christians as they slaughter the population of Jerusalem all in the name of Jesus Christ! (Incidentally, can anyone recommend a proper historical summary of the life of Jesus which avoids the BS and just sticks to the facts?)
Anyway, I think I will probably buy Prof. Gaddis's book but if any of my erudite, military or non-military, readers have a view on him, please let me know.