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Synopsis

An intense and dramatic exploration of what life on the frontline is like for soldiers of all ranks, filled with voices of veterans from World War II, the Korean War, the Falklands, the Gulf wars, and many other conflicts
 
Glorified and vilified, everyone has an opinion about soldiers, but this collection looks behind the headlines and heroism to find out who they really are. From the last man killed in World War I to a young man running the risk of improvised explosive devices in Afghanistan today, this is an examination of the pressures, fears, camaraderie, and isolation of fighting battles. It is split into three parts, the first a collection of instances of extreme courage from veterans of the recent conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere. The second part uses archive material from the armed conflicts of the last 90 years to examine how life at the front has changed, while the third is an assortment of observations on heroism from war correspondents and commentators today. The journey of a soldier is traced from enlistment through training, battlefield arrival, facing enemy fire, the end of service, and life after the military. Including contributions from former soldiers who have received treatment for physical and mental health problems, the book explores how the troubles of war can affect everyday life and is a moving and fascinating tribute to the men and women of the Army, Navy, and Royal Air Force.

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