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On 21st March, the Coral Bell School of Asia Pacific Affairs was delighted to share in the celebration and launch of Dr Meighen McCrae’s new book Coalition Strategy and the End of the First World War: The Supreme War Council and War Planning 1917-1918. The book was launched by Major General Mick Ryan in the Hedley Bull Atrium following an introduction from Shedden Professor Evelyn Goh.
Dr Meighen McCrae joined the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre here at the Bell School in June 2018 as a lecturer in strategic studies at both ANU and the Australian War College. Prior to joining us, Meighen was a lecturer in military history, strategic studies, and intelligence studies, whilst also holding the position of Deputy-Director of the Centre for Intelligence and International Security at Aberystwyth University.
Coalition Strategy and the End of the First World War (published by Cambridge University Press, Military Histories Series, in January 2019) focuses on the efforts of Britain, France, Italy, and the United States to forge a tightly coordinated coalition in the final year of the war. By considering the role of the various theatres of war and the material preparations (shipping and munitions) which underpinned the Allies’ strategy, Meighen argues that the Supreme War Council acted as a successful forum for allied coordination for a final war-winning campaign in 1919.
Dr McCrae is currently working on a monograph project entitled ‘Winning the First World War: How Allied Servicemen Defined Victory in 1917-18’. Crossing national boundaries this monograph will compare the experiences of Allied combatants in Great Britain and the Empire, France and America in order to understand what these individuals thought a victory over the Central Powers would achieve, why it was important, and broadly how they interpreted victory. In a separate project she is researching the relationship between journalism, ‘future war’ literature, strategic studies and government defence policy in Britain in the early 20th Century.
Copies of the book can be ordered via the PDF below for a 20% discount (discount expires 30 April 2019, and is available only to Australian and New Zealand residents), or at the following link: https://www.cambridge.org/au/academic/subjects/history/military-history/coalition-strategy-and-end-first-world-war-supreme-war-council-and-war-planning-19171918?format=HB
“Meighen details in this wonderful book the challenges of establishing the [Supreme War Council]; each of the nations that would provide Permanent Military Representatives saw its role and function slightly differently. These are all described in detail, and as Meighen describes, these views continued to evolve over the next year of its existence. It is a wonderfully told story of the interaction of nations, and of their political and military establishments, each struggling mightily to contribute to a military victory over Germany.” - Major General Mick Ryan
Read Major General Mick Ryan’s comments in full here.