There was never anything to cancel. In his heart, Hitler believed himself unique and German. It can be summarised in a single phrase: just like Hitler, Napoleon was defeated by the true defenders of common freedom.This startling approach went on to find its methodological footing at the heart of one of the 1980s' burgeoning trends, the comparative biography. The pages of Mein Kampf are littered with such references: the war of 1806 forms the basis for the two countries' rivalry, the war of 1870 the first taste of revenge. And in the 15th May 1942 issue of La France libre – published in London since November 1940 – we even find an article comparing the Russian campaigns of Napoleon and Hitler, concluding that Hitler's army would get its comeuppance just as the Grande Armée did.2Up to this point, however, such comparisons had been carefully judged, used for illustrative – and not comparative – purposes. Stalin called on his fellow citizens to withstand the invasion in 1941 just as their ancestors had done in 1812. You might say that true historians would never fall into such a trap. The circumstances surrounding their development differ fundamentally. Since 1914, the site is protected and has therefore changed little since the fighting of 1815. All the biographies of the Führer underline these aspects of his character; anyone still sceptical should read the section dedicated to this topic in Ian Kershaw's monumental work on Hitler.10Even attempted in the right direction chronologically-speaking, the comparison is hardly convincing. Hitler founded the Third Reich, also came to dominate the continent and, like Napoleon, saw his career end in catastrophe. We can dispute his achievements, debate his motivations, even challenge the “White Legend” version of his life, but Europeans today do not feel the same violent contempt for him as they do for the memory of Hitler.Need I emphasise any further just how different in nature their respective legacies are? A purely ideological interpretation of history can impel historians to form erroneous conclusions on the nature of regimes and historical fact. Two sides – those “against” and those “for” Napoleon […] Any reference to what he considered to be the decadent ideas of the Enlightenment was to be rejected; France, in his eyes, was the arch enemy of the German nation. All you need do is examine the chronology in order to dismiss this fallacious enigma: you cannot compare two individuals, let alone two phenomena, whose histories are located two centuries apart. Nor did he destroy Europe. For a long time, historians were unable or unwilling to avoid simplification. Vader and Hitler face off for the first time in the classic episode of Epic Rap Battles Of History. Napoleon created the French Empire and conquered a large part of Europe before being defeated. There is no shared historical basis for it. But we know all too well that when it comes to this sort of book, a point by point dissection means nothing. Quite an achievement. Waterloo Battlefield is one of the best preserved battlefields in the world. If we were to analyse, point by point, the elements behind the Napoleon-Hitler comparison offered by Seward and Ribbe, it would soon become apparent that their theories are built on nothing but historiographical sand. A comparative biography,3 well-known amongst Anglophone historians.In this little book slickly produced and written with enough references to appear serious at first glance, the author shows no caution beyond the introduction.