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December 23, 2020 36 min

History is full of winners and losers, but rarely do you come across an individual who is a winner 100% of the time. Sometimes faced with insurmountable odds, these five military leaders always found a way to win. Whether facing Hannibal’s elephants in Zama, battling across the breadth of a river in Worcester or commencing a battle at 11pm to take their Ottoman enemies by surprise, these military geniuses of the Western world were the original action heroes not just of their time, but throughout the ages.  

 Episode Resources:


  • The Campaigns of Alexander by Arrian
  • The Age of Alexander by Plutarch
  • Scipio Africanus: Soldier and Politician by H.H. Scullard
  • Scipio Africanus: Greater Than Napoleon by Sir Basil Henry Liddell Hart
  • The History of Rome by Michael Grant
  • Plutarch’s Lives: Life of Julius Caesar by Plutarch, John Dryden (Translator) 
  • Battles That Changed History by DK and Smithsonian Institution 
  • Cromwell, Our Chief of Men by Lady Antonia Fraser
  • God’s Executioner Oliver Cromwell and the Conquest of Ireland by Michael Siochru
  • The Reader’s Companion to Military History by Robert Cowley and Geoffrey Parker
  • Eagles Over The Alps: Suvorov in Italy and Switzerland by Christopher Duffy
  •  Film

  • Alexander Revisited: The (Unrated) Final Cut (2016) Directed by Oliver Stone 
  • Julius Caesar (1953) Shakespeare’s version with Marlon Brando, directed by Mankiewicz
  • Rome (2005) HBO Series
  • Cromwell (1970) with Richard Harris and Alec Guinness
  • Patton (1970) with George C. Scott 
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