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Won’t You Come Home, Bill Windsor?

In Masters of Command by Barry StraussLeave a Comment

About this whole presidential election thing…couldn’t it all be somehow less fraught? As William Seward, Lincoln’s Secretary of State once said, “We elect a king for four years.” Some of our presidents have been giants but most, not so much. Well, what if we didn’t need to elect a king because we had a king?   Imagine if America were …

Barry StraussWon’t You Come Home, Bill Windsor?
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Magna Carta – An American Tourist

In Masters of Command by Barry StraussLeave a Comment

       After spending several months last year in the Library of Congress and Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts, Magna Carta is back home in England. But events of the last century might have given it a very different fate. It’s a tale that involves the 1939 World’s Fair, the Second World War, an English cathedral and Winston Churchill. Eight hundred …

Barry StraussMagna Carta – An American Tourist
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“The US military is one of the greatest fighting forces in history”

In Masters of Command by Barry StraussLeave a Comment

At the USAF Academy graduation ceremony in Colorado yesterday President Obama said the US has the greatest military in the history of the world.” I was asked to comment and responded thus:   “If it’s pardonable exaggeration for the president to call the US military the greatest fighting force in history, it is not an exaggeration by much. No one …

Barry Strauss“The US military is one of the greatest fighting forces in history”
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D-Day, A Myth to Live By

In Masters of Command by Barry StraussLeave a Comment

          I was five years old in 1959 when Cornelius Ryan’s The Longest Day appeared and it was probably another 20 years before I picked up a copy but I was already hooked. The 1962 movie – or, rather, the re-release several years later – made me a fan. It was, in its way, my Game of Thrones: an epic …

Barry StraussD-Day, A Myth to Live By
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Memorial Day 2016: Five Books on America’s Wars for Summer Reading

In Masters of Command by Barry StraussLeave a Comment

As I headed out onto the lake this morning in my single scull, a large bird flew by off the port side. I stopped and stared and realized that it was a bald eagle, big, beautiful, majestic and moving slowly as if in salute. It has been our national symbol since 1782, and tomorrow is a national holiday. Memorial Day …

Barry StraussMemorial Day 2016: Five Books on America’s Wars for Summer Reading
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The Great Santini

In Masters of Command by Barry StraussLeave a Comment

The weekend brought the sad news of the passing of novelist Pat Conroy at age 70. I mourn him and send condolences to his family. His books bordered on bathos but also on poetry. I love them. They evoke a sumptuous sense of place in South Carolina. And, from the moment I first read them, they spoke to me, as …

Barry StraussThe Great Santini
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Leap Day is for Caesar and…

In Masters of Command, The Death of Caesar by Barry StraussLeave a Comment

Today, February 29, is Leap Day. We add it to the calendar every four years (except in years exactly divisible by 100 but not by 400 – 2000 had a leap day but 2100 will not). The purpose is to align the calendar with the earth’s revolution of the sun, which takes 365 days and 6 hours.   Don’t ask …

Barry StraussLeap Day is for Caesar and…
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The New York Post Reviews The Death of Caesar

In Masters of Command by Barry StraussLeave a Comment

“…He did not say anything about the “Ides of March,” just one difference of many between the version of Caesar’s assassination presented by William Shakespeare and the likely truth, according to Cornell University history professor Barry Strauss’ new book, “The Death of Caesar.” Strauss pored through ancient texts to determine the truest possible version of the events surrounding the assassination …

Barry StraussThe New York Post Reviews The Death of Caesar