Sid Guttridge wrote:I addressed the last post to both you and Aurora, which may be where the confusion arises. Aurora did use the word "devastating". Lawrence's criticisms of Glantz are far from "devastating".
Sorry, but your assessment that the criticism's of Glantz are not devastating are as amorphous and subjective as was the assessment that they were. It is your assessemnt that "potential errors" aren't significant or that Chris being circumspect means that the problematic nature of Glantz's work as mentioned by Chris, Zetterling, and Qvist aren't significant in the end. That's fine, but it remains your subjective assessment and thus no more or less valid than their's.
"Potential errors" are not errors. Given the number of hard facts Glantz crams into his books, there are "potentially" dozens of errors on every page and "potentially" hundreds or even thousands in 16 pages. Lawrence doesn't claim "26 errors" or even "potential errors". He is more modest, only claimimg 26 "disagreements" (his word). Many of these, as we have seen, are far from substantive.
It's more like he was being polite than modest, since we knew and liked Glantz. The errors, potential errors, and conflicts of interpretation continued throughout, not just in the first 16 pages.
You ask "Could you identify whose flak you think shot down which of the 26 points Chris raised?" I never used the phrase "shot down" and so don't have to defend it.
Okay then, could you identify who gave Chris flak and what that flak consisted of? And why you think it was significantly relevent enough for you to have mentioned it, apparently with the intent of showing it was nugatory of Chris' argument?
In an ideal world Glantz would have equal mastery of Soviet and Reich sources, get every fact right and have perfect clarity of phrase. He doesn't. However, his positive and original contribution to the material that is available to us English speakers from Soviet sources is considerable and very much to our benefit. We shouldn't lose sight of this.
By contrast, some of the criticism of him seems relatively petty and one cannot but wonder if some of it springs from critics so immersed in the German point of view that they are offended merely at his temerity in putting any reliance on Soviet sources at all. (And, yes, there are such people who believe that all Soviet sources, however internal, are propaganda. I had run-ins with some on Feldgrau. Whatever the public face of Soviet propaganda, the internal staff studies used by Glantz are prepared by military professionals whose reputation is enhanced by the fact that they won their war).
But I don't believe such an ideal world exists and know that I will find errors in any work and expect that others will find error in mine. But I also don't expect to find an error or potential error or a tortutred sentence that I have to deconstruct or attempt to fathom on every page.
And if those reputable professionals who are enhanced by being winners get something wrong I don't have a problem saying that it is wrong - why do you? The Korsun staff study, like the Kursk staff study, is replete with errors. It simply doesn't matter that the authors were winners, they were winners who wrote bad staff studies.
Happy New Year,
And to you...talk to you more then.