Democracy’s Soldiers

In a review of Armageddon, a book on WWII by Max Hastings, James Sheehan makes the following bizarre remark.

Hastings recognizes that the generals’ failure to knock Germany out of
the war in late 1944 reflected the kind of armies they led as much as
their own deficiencies as leaders. The British and American armies were
composed of citizen soldiers, who were usually prepared to do their
duty but were also eager to survive.

The corollary being that citizens of non-democracies were not eager to survive and therefore made better warriors.  Uh huh.  I could go on but Brad DeLong has a great smackdown.


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