How to fight a battle

As I mentioned in an earlier post, in preparation for the Midway Commemoration next Saturday, I’m reading Gordon Prange’s Miracle at Midway. After describing the hubris that afflicted the Japanese command six months after Pearl Harbor, Prange has this to say about the American commmanders as they prepared for the fateful conflict, at a time when victory was far from assured:

In this meeting, no one expressed heady euphoria, fatuous optimism, or smug over-confidence. No one manipulated awkward facts to fit preconceived notions or fond hopes. On the other hand, these men displayed no dank despair, no bleak pessimism, no enervating self-pity, no melodramatics of dying for flag and country. (P. 102.

Those are good words to remember going into 2012.

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  • wbkrebs

    You might also want to take a look at the chapter on Midway in Hanson’s Carnage and Cultures. Hanson has an interesting take on why and how the American fleet prevailed over the Japanese.