A fascinating look at how the unpredictable has shaped both military battles and world history.
From the wooden horse of Troy to the Gulf War, military history has been as much marked by chance and error, as by gallantry and heroism. Many conflicts have been decided by the caprice of weather, bad intelligence, heroism where it wasn't expected, or individual incompetence. In military terms, the incident which can swing a battle from victory to defeat in a moment is known as the Hinge Factor.
The Hinge Factor vividly describes battles which demonstrate this phenomenon - including the circumstances behind the loss of the Holy Cross, through to the attack of African war bees in 1914, to Star-War weaponry described in the Gulf War.
This enthralling book demystifies the general belief that battles are always won due to the brilliance of a general and will both inform and entertain a wide audience.
'Durschmeid brings an eye for the telling detail.'
'His tales of mayhem and confusion can be gripping, informative and genuinely idea-provoking. He reveals again and again, the casual impact of happenstance.'
'This entertaining book considers the errors and incidents that have shaped the world as we know it rather than as we planned it might be.'
'His vivid descriptions of battles explain all.'
'Gripping, riveting. Fascinating. Even when you're sure you know what happened and whodunit, Erik Durschmeid provides another twist.'
'Erik Durschmeid's revelations are wholly captivating.'
Manchester Evening News
'He does highlight some amazing truths and who can say he is wrong?'
Cumberland Evening News & Star
Erik Durschmied was born in Vienna in 1930. After the Second World War he emigrated to Canada. A television war correspondent for the BBC and CBS, Durschmied covered every major crisis, from Vietnam, Iran, Iraq, Belfast, Beirut, Chile, to Cuba and Afghanistan. Winner of numerous awards, Newsweek wrote 'Durschmied is a supremely gifted reporter who has transformed the media he works in.' And in Le Monde: 'He's survived more battles than any living general.' Erik has just been appointed Professor of Military History at The Military Academy of Austria. He lives in Paris and Provence with his family.