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Strategy for Defeat: The Luftwaffe 1933-1945

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  45 ratings  ·  8 reviews
A penetrating and powerfully presented explanation of the successes and failures of the German air force in World War II. "Authoritative and thorough . . . an interesting and thought provoking book of real value to historians and military thinkers."--RUSI Journal.
paperback, 365 pages
Published 1983 by Air University Press
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4.07  · 
Rating details
 ·  45 ratings  ·  8 reviews

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Despite the fascinating topic, this book is both dense and dull. Each chapter is its own contained unit. Be sure you are very well familiar with the counterpoint stories of the Allied air war or you'll miss the bulk of the compare-and-contrast elements of this book. The charts and graphs added a very nice touch.
Mike Slawdog
Aug 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Murray does a great job detailing the strategy of the Luftwaffe, or a lack thereof, in WWII, and how that fit into the German War effort in general. While I considered myself fairly well versed in WWII history, I found a lot of new information in this book that changed some of my previous conceptions as to the course of the conflict. Without giving away any revelations, Murray uses extensive evidence and data to support his contentions on the eventual defeat of what was a tactically proficient a ...more
Jul 26, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
a deep dive analysis of how the Luftwaffe fought in WWII. More than just the operational strategy, Murray relates the industrial and institutional decisions of Goering and the Third Reich and how they each led to ultimate defeat. The Luftwaffe fought on four fronts (Western Europe, Russia, Balkans and over Germany) simultaneously, with each new front the Germans opened, the Luftwaffe had to spread its forces, ultimately turning into a battle of attrition (aircraft and pilots) which they could ne ...more
Dec 02, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone interested in the subject
Finished -- a much better book than I expected on first blush (see below). Contains lots of factual information and visuals on planes, battles, etc., but is especially good in its analysis of Luftwaffe success and failures -- and, of course, the ultimate end was failure -- defeat. Murray shows how it couldn't have ended any other way.

Many tables and illustrations.

My initial review comments:

"Have scanned this; it's really a special-interest book with lots of statistics. Not sure how good it will
Nov 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: military, history
Good information, well sourced, though not the most entertaining writing.
Aug 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A rather amazing book as it discuss the actual decisions on aircraft production, wartime economic decisions and policy failures that destroyed Germany mighty Luftwaffe during the 2nd World War.
Joseph Landau
May 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
For me this read like a novel.
Jul 07, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: world-war-ii
Not bad but not great. All the charts tables notes in the text got old fast
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“For the German fighter pilot, there was no magic number of sorties or hours, the completion of which guaranteed a return home. He was already home, and in the skies over the Reich he faced an opponent who enjoyed overwhelming superiority. If he survived the first missions and his skills reached those of his opponents, he would fly until fatigue and strain led to a mistake that was more often than not fatal.” 0 likes
“In the east in the summer of 1942, the Germans embarked on a strategy to break the back of the Soviet Union by conquering the Caucasus and large portions of southern Russia. The resources available for such wide-ranging aims were completely inadequate.” 0 likes
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