Andrew Roberts

Roger and Martha Mertz Visiting Fellow
Biography: 

Andrew Roberts is the Roger and Martha Mertz Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution. Professor Andrew Roberts took a first in modern history from Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, from where he is an Honorary Senior Scholar and PhD. His biography of Winston Churchill’s foreign secretary Lord Halifax, The Holy Fox, was published in 1991 and was followed by Eminent Churchillians; Salisbury: Victorian Titan (which won the Wolfson Prize and the James Stern Silver Pen Award), Napoleon and Wellington; Hitler and Churchill: Secrets of Leadership; Waterloo: Napoleon’s Last Gamble; A History of the English-Speaking Peoples Since 1900 (which won the US Intercollegiate Studies Institute Book Award), and Masters and Commanders: How Four Titans Won the War in the West, 1941–45, which was shortlisted for the Duke of Westminster’s Gold Medal and the British Army Book Award.

Professor Roberts has edited What Might Have Been, a collection of twelve counterfactual essays by historians; The Art of War, two volumes of essays by forty historians; and The Correspondence of Benjamin Disraeli and Mrs Sarah Brydges Wylliams. His book, The Storm of War: A New History of the Second World War (2009) reached number two on the Sunday Times bestseller list, and Napoleon the Great won the Los Angeles Times Biography Prize, the Grand Prix of the Fondation Napoléon, and became a New York Times bestseller. He won the Bradley Prize in 2016. His biography of Winston Churchill, Churchill: Walking with Destiny, was published by Penguin in November 2018.

Professor Roberts is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and of the Royal Historical Society; an honorary Doctor of Humane Literature; a Trustee of the Margaret Thatcher Archive Trust and of the National Portrait Gallery; chairman of the Guggenheim-Lehrman Military Book Prize; the Lehrman Institute Distinguished Fellow at the New-York Historical Society; and a visiting professor of the War Studies Department of King’s College, London. He reviews history books for over a dozen newspapers and periodicals. His website can be found at www.andrew-roberts.net

Filter By:

Topic

Type

Recent Commentary

Blank Section (Placeholder)Analysis and Commentary

Stalin’s Greatness?

by Andrew Robertsvia Military History in the News
Tuesday, July 11, 2017

“The Red Army could have defeated Nazi Germany without Allied help,” records The Times of London, “according to two thirds of Russians, who are adopting an increasingly positive view of Joseph Stalin’s wartime leadership despite the enormous casualties suffered under his command.” This worrying sign of increased ultra-nationalism under Vladimir Putin was based on findings from a poll conducted by the respected Levada Center in Moscow. 

Blank Section (Placeholder)Analysis and Commentary

Interests First: Discarding Bad Agreements

by Andrew Robertsvia Military History in the News
Monday, November 21, 2016

The news that General Mike Flynn has become National Security Advisor has worried some Americans but delighted others, not least (for both groups) because of his stated objections to the Iranian nuclear deal signed by the Obama administration on July 14, 2015. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is just that, a plan of action. It is not a treaty, which would never have won the two-thirds Senatorial approval necessary, but merely a presidential “executive agreement,” which could therefore be reneged upon merely on a nod from the future President Trump.

Blank Section (Placeholder)Analysis and Commentary

Lest We Forget Lithuania

by Andrew Robertsvia Military History in the News
Friday, November 18, 2016

“Russia is not a superpower, it’s a super problem,” the Lithuanian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Linas Linkevičius, said on November 18, ten days after Donald Trump’s election as president of the United States. “As a child I still remember the sound of the tanks rolling through the streets of Vilnius, so even my generation—and I’m 34—still remembers when the Russians were here as a Soviet army. But they were Russian troops and they were invading us, so the last thing we are on this subject is naïve.”

Blank Section (Placeholder)Analysis and Commentary

Out Of The Gate And Into The Fire

by Andrew Robertsvia Military History in the News
Friday, November 11, 2016

When a new American president is elected, the world likes to test him within the first few weeks or months of taking power. The witness of history is almost universal in this, so much so that the phenomenon cannot be accidental. It is likely, therefore, that Donald Trump will be tested by one of the major foreign powers fairly soon after Inauguration Day 2017.

Blank Section (Placeholder)Analysis and Commentary

Russia’s Meddling In The U.S. Elections

by Andrew Robertsvia Military History in the News
Wednesday, November 9, 2016

The 2016 American presidential election, which has just produced the greatest political upset in living memory, is hard to find precedents for in recent history, but that is not true of the intervention in the American political process by Russia. The decision taken at the highest levels of Moscow’s decision-making apparatus first to hack into the Democratic National Committee’s emails and then to make the spoils public via WikiLeaks, was a deliberate attempt to interfere in domestic American politics.

Related Commentary

Cleaning Up The Mess

by Andrew Robertsvia Strategika
Monday, October 31, 2016

It is one of the glories of the U.S. Constitution that although presidential administrations must abide by the laws made by previous ones until they are repealed, foreign policy initiatives that are unworthy of a great nation can be discarded almost immediately. This is what will happen in November next year; indeed, the Obama administration’s keenness to argue that the Iranian nuclear deal did not constitute a formal treaty—in order to prevent the Senate from debating and perhaps refusing to ratify it—will make it all the easier for an incoming administration to denounce it. 

Related Commentary

Snake Charmers and Snake Killers

by Andrew Robertsvia Strategika
Wednesday, September 21, 2016

The immediate result of an Israeli strike—assuming it were successful in destroying or at least very significantly degrading the Iranian nuclear program—would be a collective exhalation of breath across the Middle East and Europe. One of WikiLeaks’ most telling revelations came when the King of Saudi Arabia was heard urging the Americans “to cut off the head of the snake,” and if the Israelis undertook the identical action the Sunni Arab leadership would be cock-a-hoop with pleasure and relief (while of course publicly reserving the right to denounce Israel for aggression and war-mongering).

Autobiography & Memoir

My Early Life, by Winston Churchill (1930)

by Andrew Robertsvia Classics of Military History
Tuesday, August 9, 2016

The Times review of Churchill’s autobiography, My Early Life, mentioned “the charm and briskness of this book” as well as its “humour, headlong excitement, quiet irony, melancholy regret for vanished customs and glories, love of sport [and] the pleasures of friendship,” although it also made the slightly snide point that “The material is, of course, splendid, as Mr. Churchill will agree.” That material is an adventure story that would defy belief if it were in a novel, yet in fact it did all happen to one man.

Autobiography & Memoir

Her Privates We, by Frederic Manning (1930)

by Andrew Robertsvia Classics of Military History
Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Frederic Manning was an expatriate Australian aesthete-turned-journalist-turned-soldier who wanted his readers to understand was it was like to have fought in the trenches of World War One. His haunting autobiographical novel became an international bestseller in the 1930s and no less an authority than Ernest Hemingway described it as “the best and noblest book of men in war that I have ever read.

Period Military History

The March of the Twenty-Six, by R. F. Delderfield (1962)

by Andrew Robertsvia Classics of Military History
Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Ronald Delderfield was an English novelist and dramatist (A Horseman Riding By, To Serve Them All My Days, God is an Englishman) who nonetheless wrote a sublime piece of military history telling the story of the Emperor Napoleon’s relations with his twenty-six marshals of the Empire and their relations with each other and the effect both had on the course of the Napoleonic Wars. 

Pages