Supreme Command: Soldiers, Statesmen, and Leadership in Wartime

By Eliot A. Cohen
Read by Simon Vance

10.77 Hours 03/01/2003 unabridged
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The relationship between military leaders and political leaders has always been a complicated one, especially in times of war. When the chips are down, who should run the show, the politicians or the generals? In Supreme Command, Eliot Cohen examines four great democratic war statesmen, Abraham Lincoln, Georges Clemenceau, Winston Churchill, and David Ben-Gurion, to reveal the surprising answer—the politicians. The generals may think they know how to win, but the statesmen are the ones who see the big picture. The lessons of the book apply not just to President Bush and other world leaders but to anyone who faces extreme adversity at the head of a free organization, including leaders and managers throughout the corporate world.

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Summary

Summary

The relationship between military leaders and political leaders has always been a complicated one, especially in times of war. When the chips are down, who should run the show, the politicians or the generals?

In Supreme Command, Eliot Cohen examines four great democratic war statesmen, Abraham Lincoln, Georges Clemenceau, Winston Churchill, and David Ben-Gurion, to reveal the surprising answer—the politicians. The generals may think they know how to win, but the statesmen are the ones who see the big picture.

The lessons of the book apply not just to President Bush and other world leaders but to anyone who faces extreme adversity at the head of a free organization, including leaders and managers throughout the corporate world.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“Cohen argues…that great victories are more often achieved precisely when national leaders involve themselves in the pursuit of policy. This is a great read, and more importantly, it carries a significant message.” Paul Kennedy, New York Times bestselling author
“This is the most important book in a long time on military affairs. It is likely to become the standard volume on the subject of top command. It also promises to change the way we all look at how wars should be managed by presidents and other civilian leaders. Military officers especially may be shocked by Cohen’s conclusion that the best civilian leaders are those who meddle and ask tough questions of their military subordinates. But even those who disagree with him will come away informed by the argument.” Thomas E. Ricks, New York Times bestselling author
“This fascinating study of iron-willed men is superbly read by [Simon Vance]. His clear and confident voice reads the narrative nearly flawlessly.” AudioFile
“This well documented book will be accessible to lay readers as well as scholars.” Library Journal
“[Vance] offers a professional and smooth reading of this book. His voice is even and clear, and his timing is impeccable.” Kliatt
“Timely and provocative reading in an era of drumbeating.” Kirkus Reviews
“A fascinating study of the intersection of war and politics. Cohen’s exploration of the conundrum of wartime leadership—Who should run things: president or general?—is both brilliant and unconventional. A timely book, very readable and original.” Charles Krauthammer, syndicated columnist

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Eliot A. Cohen

Eliot A. Cohen is professor of strategic studies at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies of the Johns Hopkins University. He previously served on the policy planning staff of the Office of the Secretary of Defense and as an intelligence officer in the US Army Reserve, and he taught at the US Naval War College and at Harvard University. He has written books and articles on a variety of military and national security–related subjects. He served as counselor of the Department of State from 2007 to 2009. He lives in Washington, DC.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/History
Runtime: 10.77
Audience: Adult
Language: English