Castles, Battles, and Bombs

Castles, Battles, and Bombs

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Castles, Battles, and Bombs reconsiders key episodes of military history from the point of view of economicsa€”with dramatically insightful results. For example, when looked at as a question of sheer cost, the building of castles in the High Middle Ages seems almost inevitable: though stunningly expensive, a strong castle was far cheaper to maintain than a standing army. The authors also reexamine the strategic bombing of Germany in World War II and provide new insights into Francea€™s decision to develop nuclear weapons. Drawing on these examples and more, Brauer and Van Tuyll suggest lessons for todaya€™s military, from counterterrorist strategy and military manpower planning to the use of private military companies in Afghanistan and Iraq. qIn bringing economics into assessments of military history, [the authors] also bring illumination. . . . [The authors] turn their interdisciplinary lens on the mercenary arrangements of Renaissance Italy; the wars of Marlborough, Frederick the Great, and Napoleon; Grant's campaigns in the Civil War; and the strategic bombings of World War II. The results are invariably€”Martin Walker, Wilson Quarterly qThis study is serious, creative, important. As an economist I am happy to see economics so professionally applied to illuminate major decisions in the history of€”Thomas C. Schelling, Winner of the 2005 Nobel Prize in EconomicsTo this day, that work is frequently read to mean that a€œwhatever is expedient to do is necessary to do, a€ a Renaissance example of utilitarian realpolitik (http://en.; accessed on 17 September 2004). Thus, a€œpolitical institutions ... On that history, the history of the atomic bomb, see especially Richard Rhodesa#39; acclaimed works, 1988 [1986] and 1995. 101. Contamine, 1984anbsp;...

Title:Castles, Battles, and Bombs
Author:Jurgen Brauer, Hubert van Tuyll
Publisher:University of Chicago Press - 2008-11-15


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