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Brothers, Rivals, Victors: Eisenhower,…

Brothers, Rivals, Victors: Eisenhower, Patton, Bradley and the Partnership… (2011)

by Jonathan W. Jordan

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I liked reading this book, it has caused me to rethink my ranking of these three in my thoughts of WWII. It is a well written and researched book. If you are interested in WWII you should take the time and read it. ( )
  Philip100 | Oct 15, 2014 |
Excellent new biography about the relationship between three friends as they influenced the course of history, and how war can threaten to break apart even the strongest of friendships. Focuses a lot on the main there, with the other figures of the war being mentioned mainly in a supporting way. The use of quotations and oral sources provides an excellent view into the psychology of these generals. A fine book. ( )
  HadriantheBlind | Mar 30, 2013 |
Intertwines the histories of these three important figures of WWII in a straight-forward but sympathetic manner. The flaws of each are discussed, but are balanced by the great contributions each made to the success of the war. Interesting information on the close friendships between the three despite such different personalities and backgrounds. One of the more successful of the books written some 60 years after the fact and gleaned entirely from secondary sources. ( )
  seoulful | Aug 11, 2012 |
Brothers – Rivals – Victors is an interesting read. Jonathan W. Jordan has managed to intertwine the stories of three American generals who arguably brought about eventual victory in Europe during World War II. He pulls no punches. Those who have watched the overly positive biographies on Generals Patton, Bradley and Eisenhower will want to prepare themselves before diving into the six hundred and thirty-five pages of this book.

Jordan is fair however and even though my favourite general takes a beating throughout the pages of his book, I forgive him because he is one of the first to be brutally honest about good ol’ Field Marshal Bernard Law Montgomery. If the swagger stick wielding egomaniac is your favourite, it’s best that you pass this book up. The bitter truths within will hurt.

However, if you can get past the bitter truth, this book gives a no holds barred history of the three generals and their battles amongst themselves and the battles that liberated Europe.

I gave it four stars. I would have given it four and a half, but ^&$%, I do have to take offence to what is said about my *$&(#@!&^ favourite general. Oh just go and buy the *%@^ book! You won't regret it! :)

www.daniellittle.com ( )
  Sturgeon | Jul 20, 2012 |
I have read a fair number of biographies on WWII generals. I think that this book is one the best to outline the background and relationships between three of the most visible American generals in the ETO. Eisenhower, Bradley and Patton had a unique relationship. Each had their own challenges to deal with. The book dwells on the overlaps of the three men and how their own challenges effected their relationships with each other.

There are various things that were brought to light that I had not fully appreciated before. For example, the friendship between Ike and Patton dates back to 1919 when they first met. The numerous letters between them referenced in the book illuminate the depth of their early friendship. For several years after WWI both were probably the only pioneers of tank warfare that really appreciated its pending role in future conflicts. Patton was able to retain his abundant enthusiasm for armored warfare as the 'branch of decision'. Ike, as an Infantry officer, had to later temper his views in order to stay viable for promotion (and to stay in the Army). As the US war involvement deepened through North Africa, Sicily and then northern Europe their friendship was forced to evolve into a command relationship. It appears Ike could handle this evolution better than Patton.

The almost grudging, almost antagonist relationship between Bradley and Patton is explored in depth better than in any other book I have read about them. There was certainly more to it than was depicted in the 1970 movie, Patton.

If you have only read about Bradley through Patton biographies, you may not appreciate Ike's utmost respect for Bradley's leadership and organizational acumen. The GI General was not one to toot his own horn, thus his low key nature have made his contributions to the war effort not fully appreciated.

All three generals had personal ambitions, but the author makes a good effort in explaining that ultimately each would do ever was required to support the war effort (whether they liked it or not).

If I had one criticism about the book it would be that the author sometimes seems overly familiar with book's figures. Statements like, "Omar Bradley gritted his false teeth and surrendered Highway 124..." during the Sicily campaign chapter or "Bradley's jaw clenched as he walked past the large operations maps that hung from the wall of his paneled trailer" during the St. Lo operation made me flinch. While the book is replete with footnotes to primary and secondary book references and oral interviews recordings, I doubt seriously that the author actually knew some of the more very personal habits of these generals.

So, less the above exclusion, I found the book to be an excellent read. If you have read other books on these generals or have some working knowledge of their biographies, you will greatly appreciate this book

On a personal note, Patton died just over 15 years before I was born. After my birth, I had 4 days of the Eisenhower presidency. However, I actually saw Bradley at West Point my plebe year in 1980 while I was marching in a cadet parade to honor him. A year later I remember reading in the New York Times that he died in an elevator in NYC. The book indicates that he actually stayed mentally sharp up to his death. It is a rewarding feeling that the hobbled old guy who seemed to have trouble lifting his head that I saw in his wheelchair at the edge of the parade field likely actually appreciated the parade we put on for him. ( )
  usma83 | Feb 27, 2012 |
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The only thing worse than fighting a war with allies is fighting a war without them.
- Winston Churchill
To Austin, Emily, and Rachel
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This is the story of three men sent to tear down an empire.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0451232127, Hardcover)

The true story of the friendship-and rivalry-among the greatest American generals of World War II.

Supreme Allied Commander Dwight D. Eisenhower, General George S. Patton, and General Omar N. Bradley engineered the Allied conquest that shattered Hitler's hold over Europe. But they also shared an intricate web of relationships going back decades. In the cauldron of World War II, they found their prewar friendships complicated by shifting allegiances, jealousy, insecurity, patriotism, and ambition.

Meticulously researched and vividly written, Jonathan W. Jordan's Brothers Rivals, Victors recounts the battle for Europe through the eyes of these three legendary generals who fought to liberate two continents. For the first time in such detail, the bonds between these battle captains are explored, and readers are treated to a rare insider's view of life at the summit of raw, violent power. Throughout three years of hard, bloody warfare, Eisenhower, the Alliance's great diplomat, sought victory in the fighting qualities and tactical genius of his most trusted subordinates, Bradley and Patton. Bradley and Patton, in turn, owed their careers to Eisenhower, who protected them from the slings and arrows of politicians, rival generals, their allies, and the U.S. Navy. The twin pillars of their working relationships were duty and trust. Yet their friendship, so genuine and unalloyed before the war, would be put to the ultimate test as life-and-death decisions were thrust upon them, and honor and duty conflicted with personal loyalty.

Brothers Rivals Victors is drawn from the candid accounts of its main characters, and strips away much of the public image of "Ike" (Eisenhower), the "G.I.'s General" (Bradley), and "Old Blood and Guts" (Patton) to reveal the men lurking beneath the legend. Adding richness to this insider's story are the words and observations of a supporting cast of generals, staff officers, secretaries, aides, politicians, and wives, whose close proximity to Eisenhower, Bradley and Patton in times of stress and tranquility are brought together to produce a uniquely intimate account of a relationship that influenced a war. The story of how these three great strategists pulled together to wage the deadliest conflict in history, despite their differences and rivalries, is marvelously told in this eye-opening narrative, sure to become a classic of military history.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:29 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Examines the relationship between American World War II generals Eisenhower, Patton, and Bradley, and looks at how they were able to work together to defeat Germany.

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