Gentlemen I've just finished reading Max Hastings 'All Hell Let Loose' - The World at War 1939-1945 which is his take on that war, it's causes and effect. Now overall it's an interesting read but there is a statement in the conclusion that has taken me by suprise. I know very little about the Second War other than the usual Battle of Britain, D Day and Arnheim stuff. I am much more up to speed on the First War being fairly well read and having visited battlefields there a few times. But I know what it meant to my Dad who was in it, and a couple of the old and bold I've met along the way and the following from the final (concluisions) chapter has made me a tad uncomfortable. 'The Royal Navy and the RAF did many things bravely and well, though always straining to match their strengths to their commitments. The British Army's overall performance, however, seldom surpassed adequacy, and often fell short of it. Alan Brooke readily acknowledged, it was deficient in competent commanders, imagination, appropriate transport and armour, energy and professional skill.....It's shortcomings would have been even more cruelly exposed had it been obliged to bear a larger share of the burden of beating the Wehrmacht.' I don't wish to argue for or against this statement but seek enlightenment. Was the Army really (as the author seems to be saying) pants in World War Two? I understand that it was the Eastern front that bore the brunt of the German military might and broke the back of the Wehrmacht, but was the Army really that bad in our own spheres of operations? As I said I really don't know the period, so I ask the historians of ARRSE. Is Hastings and Idiot well wide of the mark, or is this a fair estimation of the Army in the Second World War?