From the Vault: Robert Icks on Liddell Hart

Today we present an article from the November-December 1952 issue of ARMOR written by Colenel Robert J. Icks title “Lidell Hart: One View.” Icks was a pioneer in the writing and researching of tanks and armored warfare, writing numerous books on the topic starting in the 1920’s up through to the 1970’s. In “The Fighting Tanks 1916-1933“, which he co-authored with Ralph Jones and George Rarey, Icks is described as possessing “one of the most complete individual tank libraries in the world.” At the time of his death in 1985, his library was bequeathed to the Patton Museum. A list of his collection can be viewed here, it is listed as 70 linear feet of material!

In the course of his research on tanks, Icks carried on a correspondence with British journalist, historian and military theorist Basil Liddell Hart.  Widely credited as one of the prophets of modern mechanized warfare, Liddell Hart was one of the most prolific writers on military matters in the 20th century. A WW1 British Army captain, Liddell Hart retired from the army in 1927 to embark on a career as a journalist and historian. Following WW2, Liddell Hart continued to write, among his most well known works were his books based on interviews with surviving German Generals (The Other Side of the Hill, The German Generals Talk) , his editing of the Rommel Papers as well as his single volume history of the war.  Liddell Hart was no stranger to controversy, and his strong opinions on matters often have drawn strong replies from historians and military thinkers.  This article presents Colonel Icks view on Liddell Hart and his writings.

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