The Hinge Factor: How Chance and Stupidity Have Changed History

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Hodder & Stoughton, May 23, 2013 - History - 416 pages
4 Reviews

From the wooden horse of Troy to the Gulf War, military history has been as much marked by chance and error, as by gallantry and heroism. Many conflicts have been decided by the caprice of weather, bad intelligence, heroism where it wasn't expected, or individual incompetence. In military terms, the incident that can swing a battle from victory to defeat in a moment is known as the Hinge Factor.

THE HINGE FACTOR vividly describes battles which demonstrate this phenomenon - including the circumstances behind the loss of the Holy Cross, through to the attack of African war bees in 1914, to Star Wars weaponry described in the Gulf War. This enthralling book demystifies the general belief that battles are always won due to the brilliance of a general and will both inform and entertain a wide audience.

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User Review  - Sandydog1 - LibraryThing

A great premise and a great selection of battles and major conflicts (but mostly battles; 4 1/2 stars). Crude, horribly confusing battle maps and awkward, disjointed prose. You'll get so much more ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - librisissimo - LibraryThing

Substance: Interesting, brief accounts of major battles (or wars) in world history concentrating on the "hinges" - the events and decisions that directly or obliquely determined the outcomes. Despite ... Read full review

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About the author (2013)

Erik Durschmied was born in Vienna in 1930. After World War 2 he emigrated to Canada. A television war correspondent for the BBC and CBS, Durschmied covered every major crisis, from Vietnam, Iran, Iraq, Belfast, Beirut, Chile, to Cuba and Afghanistan. Winner of numerous awards, Newsweek wrote 'Durschmied is a supremely gifted reporter who has transformed the media he works in.' And in Le Monde: 'He's survived more battles than any living general.' He lives in Paris and Provence with his family.

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