The Roots of Blitzkrieg: Hans von Seeckt and German Military Reform

In This Review

The Roots of Blitzkrieg: Hans von Seeckt and German Military Reform

By James S. Corum
University Press of Kansas, 1992
274 pp. $29.95

A superb study of how the German army rebuilt itself after World War I, despite the rigid restrictions imposed by the victorious Allies. Almost 60 committees went to work immediately after the war to digest the lessons of the struggle of 1914-18. The Germans, contrary to legend, did well in the interwar period not because they shrugged off the experience of defeat, but precisely because they studied it so very closely. Corum depicts a military culture in which junior officers could oppose, in print and repeatedly, the firm convictions of their elders and yet not suffer retaliation. In short, an invaluable study of how a peacetime military avoided stagnation at a time of technological flux and when its relevance to immediate international problems appeared minimal. Material here for consideration by those thinking about the future of the American military as well.

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