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Somme - Into the Breach
Somme - Into the Breach
Sebag-Montefiore, Hugh
No conflict better encapsulates all that went wrong on the Western Front during the First World War than the Battle of the Somme in 1916. The tragic loss of life and stoic endurance of British and Allied troops after incompetent generals sent their men over the top, like lambs to the slaughter, is an image that will be hard to ignore during this centennial year. But was it as simple as that? Without for a moment excusing the commanders' unimaginative tactics and their callous disregard for their soldiers' safety, this book shows the extent to which the Allies were in fact often able to break through the German front lines. We are not just talking about 1 July 1916, the infamous first day of the battle, with its catastrophic casualties- the fighting continued for four months. Nor are we just relying on records deposited in British archives; the author has also travelled far and wide to find documents overseas. A positive interpretation of the battle emerges. Not only did the battle form a crucial part of the learning process, which helped British generals eventually adopt winning tactics, but it also ripped the heart out of the German Army. It was certainly not a British victory, but it was the beginning of the German slide towards defeat....
Second hand Trade Paperback