Nearly ninety years ago, on 31st July 1917, the small Belgian village of Passchendaele became the focus for one of the most gruelling, bloody and bizarre battles of World War 1. By 6th November, when Passchendaele village and the ridge were captured, over half a million British, French, Canadians, Australians, New Zealanders and Germans had become casualties. Philip Warner, the noted historian of twentieth-century warfare and the author of over fifty books on military history, many published by Pen and Sword, has skilfully brought together all the elements of this horrific campaign - the historical background, personal accounts, strategies and tactics, the personalities and the political manoeuvres. He investigates the issues which had a crucial effect on the course of the battle, including the mutinous state of the French army, the bombardment which destroyed the drainage system, Field Marshal Sir Douglas Haig's determination to continue operations despite the appalling weather and ground conditions, and the stormy relationship between Haig and Lloyd George. However, it is the determined fighting ability and the bravery of the allied soldiers, rather than the tactical plans of the commanders, that dominate this detailed and totally absorbing account of the harrowing four-month campaign called the Battle of Passchendaele.
Passchendaele is a masterly and timely analysis of one of the most important battles in history.
The book is a compact size, and a perfect accompaniment for a holiday read, or even on a tightly packed battlefields visit given that it will not take up too much room in a suitcase.Jon Sandison, Freelance
Philip Warner the noted historian of 20th Century warfare and author of over fifty excellent books on military history has in this superb volume, successfully brought together all the elements of this horrendous campaign therefore providing the reader with an in-depth insight into a battle fought on ground so bad that one senior officer at the time wept and asked the question “did we really send men to fight in this?”Roll of Honour, Michael D. Booker
I personally rate this particular volume and consider it an invaluable reference tool and a therefore must for the bookshelves for anyone with an interest in the Great War.