Magazine June 3, 2013, Issue

Wisdom in Command

The Savior Generals: How Five Commanders Saved Wars That Were Lost -- From Ancient Greece to Iraq, by Victor Davis Hanson (Bloomsbury, 320 pp., $28)

If the universal genius of such commanders as Alexander, Caesar, and Napoleon is equal to the most varied chances of war, the narrower virtuosity of the “savior generals,” Victor Davis Hanson writes in his absorbing new book, enables them to excel in the singular art of salvaging wars that appear to be lost.

Hanson finds the exemplary instance of a savior general in Themistocles, the Athenian who came into his own in the lowest ebb of his city’s fortunes. After the Greek defeat at Thermopylae, a massive Persian army under Xerxes descended to Boeotia and Attica. In this dark moment, Hanson

Michael Knox Beran — Mr. Beran is a lawyer and writer. His book WASPs: The Splendors and Miseries of an American Aristocracy is to be published in August.

In This Issue

Articles

Politics & Policy

The Campaign Must Go On!

What many of us openly hypothesized immediately following the September 11 Benghazi terrorist attack is finally, after eight months of tooth-pulling, established fact: The Obama administration’s oft-repeated story that Islamophobia ...
Politics & Policy

The Difference It Will Make

The May 8 congressional testimony of three courageous State Department whistleblowers foreshadows a substantially longer, more detailed public investigation into the September 11, 2012, Benghazi attacks. It is clear even ...

Features

Politics & Policy

The Odds in Afghanistan

Kabul – Will America’s decade-plus effort to bring stability and security to Afghanistan succeed? Crisscrossing the country at the invitation of U.S. commanders, as I have been doing regularly since 2008, ...
Politics & Policy

Agent McConnell

Mitch McConnell had a problem. He needed to give President Obama, the man he had publicly vowed to make a one-term president, a nominee for the Legal Services Corporation. By ...

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

Two Masters

Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475–1564) and Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528) were contemporaries, though Michelangelo had a much longer life. Both are titans in the annals of Western art. But, as two enlightening exhibitions of ...

Sections

Athwart

Your Firstborn, Too

Second terms are the price a man pays for the hubris of thinking he deserves one. The Boston Herald, searching for a term to sum up the president’s merry May, chose ...
The Long View

Talking Points

CONFIDENTIAL — EYES ONLY Please review the following talking points and submit revisions, etc. NO LATER THAN DECEMBER 10! (Draft includes revisions from DepWar and DepState and WH.) Early in the morning on ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

YOUR DAYS ARE NUMBERED; YOU ARE WEIGHED AND FOUND WANTING; YOUR KINGDOM WILL BE DIVIDED AND SURRENDERED TO THE PERSIANS It’s one year later, but the same old subway station Stairs I ...
Happy Warrior

Long-Run Silence

The other day, Niall Ferguson, a celebrity historian at Harvard, was at an “investors’ conference,” the kind of speaking gig he plays a lot of: You get a ton of ...
Politics & Policy

Letters

The Borg Below I was intrigued by Kevin D. Williamson’s “Borg Queen” (May 6). It reminded me of the contrast between the junior devil’s “Enemy” and his “Father Below” in Chapter ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ Note to IRS auditors: Please skip page 14. And page 8. Actually, maybe just skip the whole issue . . . ‐ A Philadelphia jury convicted Kermit Gosnell of the ...

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