Sir Max Covers the Canceling of Military History
On my bookshelves right now, I have a number of excellent volumes on military history by British historian/correspondent/author Sir Max Hugh Macdonald Hastings, best just known as Max Hastings.
His The Battle for the Falklands is the best I’ve read on the subject and is drawn from first-hand reporting as he was there on the ground dodging Argentine A-4s and was the first civilian in liberated Port Stanley.
Then of course there is Overlord, Bomber Command, The Korean War, et. al.
Sir Max in an opinion piece entitled “American Universities Declare War on Military History: Academics seem to have forgotten that the best way to avoid conflict is to study it.” hits the nail on the head.
The revulsion from war history may derive not so much from students’ unwillingness to explore the violent past, but from academics’ reluctance to teach, or even allow their universities to host, such courses. Some dub the subject “warnography,” and the aversion can extend to the study of international relations. Less than half of all history departments now employ a diplomatic historian, against 85% in 1975. As for war, as elderly scholars retire from posts in which they have studied it, many are not replaced: the roles are redefined.