Thorough Description of World War II in Chester Wilmot's The Struggle for Europe
Though this student looked in Who's Who and Contemporary Authors, no
information on Chester Wilmot could be found. One considered searching the
Directory of American Scholars, but that would not be helpful since he is
In The Struggle for Europe, Wilmot seeks to explain several points. First,
he explores and explains how the western allies succeeded militarily but
failed politically during World War II. He then elaborates on how and why
the western allies crushed the Nazi regime; yet, they allowed the Soviet
Union to overtake Eastern Europe and block the Atlantic Charter from taking
effect in those nations. Third, the author discusses Hitler's defeat and
Stalin's victory. Fourthly, he endeavors on a mission to explain how the
Soviet Union replaced Germany as the dominant European power.
Beginning with the Battle of Britain, the book takes the reader through the
war up to the surrender of Germany. In this process Wilmot touches on
Hitler's alliance with Mussolini, Hitler's conquest of France, the Lowlands,
and the Balkans, and the Nazi dictator's collapse in the expansion of the
Soviet Union. The author strategically builds the Allied alliance, through
the book's course, and he uses the Normandy invasion to illustrate its full
effectiveness. Also included are discussions on the concessions granted to
Stalin by the Allies in general, and Franklin D. Roosevelt in particular.
President Roosevelt believed that Stalin wanted security for his country
with no territorial acquisitions in mind. In order to give the Soviet
leader his second front in Europe, FDR also put the Japanese problem in the
By providing the reader with first-hand quotes and writings from the Nazi
war machine's hierarchy, Wilmot looks at the external and internal workings
of the German Wehrmacht in meticulous detail. The U-boat campaign, the
inadequacies of the Luftwaffe, and the shortcomings of the Panzer divisions
are discussed. The war, from April 1940 to May 1945, is expertly covered.
He details various meetings of Allied and Axis partners, various battles,
and various strategies. In this study, the author used very readable and
easily accessible language. Events are described in good detail and his
ideas are well related. The emphasis of The Struggle for Europe seems to
be on two major topics that are stated in the preface. The first topic
deals exclusively with the defeat of Germany. The second topic deals with
the alliance between the United States and Great Britain. By covering the
defeat of the German armed forces on the western, eastern, and
Mediterranean fronts, he gives reasons for their every failure. Throughout
the book, statistics are given representing German war production in terms
of tanks, planes, guns, vehicles, soldiers, and ships.
The second topic is probed in almost as much detail as...