Synopses & Reviews
"A solid inside view of the strategic thinking that went into the campaign against Hitler as America laid the groundwork for the D-Day invasion the following year." Kirkus Reviews, starred review
Drawing on years of archival research and interviews, Commander in Chief reveals the gripping story suppressed by Winston Churchill in his memoirs of FDR s battles with Churchill to hold fast to Allied strategy. Roosevelt knew that the Allies should take Sicily but avoid a wider battle in southern Europe, building experience but saving strength to invade France in early 1944. At the Casablanca Conference, Churchill seemed to agree only to undermine his own generals and the Allied command, testing Roosevelt s patience to the limit. Afraid of the invasion planned for Normandy, Churchill pushed instead for disastrous fighting in Italy, thereby almost losing the war for the Allies. In a dramatic showdown, FDR finally set the ultimate course for victory by making the ultimate threat.In Commander in Chief, Hamilton masterfully chronicles the clash of nations and of two titanic personalities at a crucial moment in modern history."
"Superb . . . Hamilton brilliantly sets out Roosevelt's foresight, determination and skill in establishing a new world order." -- Fareed Zakaria, Washington Post
"Provocative . . . stimulating to follow." -- Thomas E. Ricks, New York Times Book Review
1943 was the year of Allied military counteroffensives, beating back the forces of the Axis powers in North Africa and the Pacific--the "Hinge of Fate," as Winston Churchill called it. In Commander in Chief Nigel Hamilton reveals FDR's true role in this saga: overruling his own Joint Chiefs of Staff, ordering American airmen on an ambush of the Japanese navy's Admiral Yamamoto, facing down Churchill when he attempted to abandon Allied D-day strategy (twice). This FDR is profoundly different from the one Churchill later painted. President Roosevelt's patience was tested to the limit quelling the Prime Minister's "revolt," as Churchill pressured Congress and senior American leaders to focus Allied energy on disastrous fighting in Italy and the Aegean instead of landings in Normandy. Finally, in a dramatic showdown at Hyde Park, FDR had to stop Churchill from losing the war by making the ultimate threat, setting the Allies on their course to final victory.
In Commander in Chief, Hamilton masterfully chronicles the clash of nations--and of two titanic personalities--at a crucial moment in modern history.
"The rebuttal to the Churchill multivolume history . . . The war retains its power to shock and surprise." -- Boston Globe