Military History Lecture - Monty and Rommel: Parallel Lives

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A lecture by Dr Peter Caddick-Adams TD PhD FRHistS, Lecturer in Military and Security Studies, UK Defence Academy.


Montgomery and Rommel were alike in many ways. Both were on the periphery of the military establishment and were in part creations of the propaganda of their own and that of their superiors. They represent the first time military commanders proactively and systematically used (and were used by) the media as they came to prominence in the North Africa Campaign. They each added something special to their respective commands. Rommel's performance with the 7th Panzer Division in 1940 was inspired. Montgomery brought with him an extraordinary personal charisma in the way he took over a demoralised Eighth Army in August 1942 and led it to victory just two months later. Both commanders also gave trusted subordinates room to use their initiative.

In his lecture, Peter will trace Montgomery and Rommel's lives from their provincial upbringings, through to them facing each other across the trenches in the First World War, and to North Africa and Europe in the second. He will compare their tactical talents and personalities in battle and explore their natural instinctive feel for combat.

Dr Peter Caddick-Adams TD PhD FRHistS is a Lecturer in Military and Security Studies at the UK Defence Academy, specialising in military history,  media operations, doctrine and leadership. He joined the Territorial Army in 1985 and served as a military media advisor in the rank of major until his recent retirement. Acknowledged as one of the UK's most experienced battlefield guides, Peter has led over 200 visits to more than 50 battlefields around the world, covering all periods in history, from the Romans to the present day.



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