Friday, November 16, 2007

Desert War

Reading Robin Neilland's Eighth Army has given me a greater appreciation of what my grandfather did in the Second World War.
My grandfather lowered his age and joined up and was sent to training in Palestine, before fighting against the Vichy French in Syria, and the Germans in North Africa. My grandfather was a stretcher bearer, and the Australian forces he served with were part of the Eighth Army.

Neilland's book follows the Eighth Army from its beginnings in North Africa until the end of the war in Italy, and focuses on the battles it fought in, and the units that made it up.

One of the great things about the Eighth Army was its multicultural nature, units from Australia, England, Scotland, New Zealand, India, South Africa, Poland, France and Italy all fought in it at one time or another.

This has been a great read, that has plenty of interviews with soldiers involved with the Eighth Army which helps to bring out the character of this important moment in World War Two history.

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