Book Review – Alexander Watson, Enduring the Great War, Combat, Morale, Collapse in the German and British Armies, 1914-1918 (Cambridge: CUP, 2008)

During the war the Great War, around 5% of German and British combatants suffered from psychiatric breakdown; Alexander Watson’s book seeks to answer why the other 95% were able to largely withstand the rigours of trench warfare with relatively few disciplinary problems or desertion.[1]His book aims ‘to provide a new understanding of the impressive resilience […]

Ep267 – Morale in the BEF on the Western Front, 1917-8 – Dr Alex Mayhew

Dr Alex Mayhew, a historian of the cultural, military, and social history of war and also a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, talks about his research into the morale of the British soldier in the final 18 months of the Great War. He and the host, talk about their respective perspectives on morale and motivation […]

Book Review – Guy Sajer, The Forgotten Soldier (London: Cassell, 1999)

Guy Sajer’s Second World War memoir of his service in the Wehrmacht on the Eastern Front during the Second World War has been seen as an important work since it was translated into an English edition in 1971.[1] Sajer was born in 1927 in Lorraine to a French father and German mother, whose maiden name […]

Book Review – Werner Kindler, Obedient unto Death (London: Frontline, 2019)

Werner Kindler’s Obedient unto Death is his memoir of service in the 1st SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler (LAH) during the Second World War. It was written between 1985 and 2010.[1] The memoir opens with Kindler’s birth in West Prussia, then part of Poland, in 1922. The rest of the account covers Kindler’s […]

Ep265 – The Indian Army in WW1 – Dr Andrew Jarboe

Historian and teacher Dr Andrew T. Jarboe talks about his recent book Indian Soldiers in World War I: Race and Representation in an Imperial War, published by University of Nebraska Press in 2021. In this interview, Andrew argues that Indian soldiers contributed decisively to the British Empire’s final victory in the war. He suggests that […]

Book Review –  Jiří Hutečka, Men under Fire. Motivation, Morale and Masculinity among Czech Soldiers in the Great War, 1914–1918 (New York/Oxford: Berghahn, 2019)

Jiří Hutečka’s new interesting and novel new book explores the motivations that underpinned the morale of Czech soldiers fighting in the Austro-Hungarian Army during the Great War. Soldiers of Czech nationality made were the third largest ethnic group in the Austrian Hungarian Empire, providing around 1.5m soldiers of the 7m to 8m that served.[1] Hutečka […]

BOOK REVIEW – Thorolf Hillblad (Ed.), Twilight of the Gods [Account of Erik Wallin] (Mechanicsburg, PA/USA: Stackpole Books, 2009)

Erik Wallin was a Stockholm-born Swedish volunteer who fought in the Panzer Reconnaissance Battalion of the 11th SS-Panzergrenadier Division Nordland that saw action on the Eastern Front during the Second World War. Twilight of the Gods is Wallin’s account of his service with this formation from late 1944 to the end of the war. The […]

Ep263 – The German colonies in WW1 – Prof Matt Fitzpatrick

Historian Professor Matt Fitzpatrick, Professor in the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences at Flinders University in Australia, talks about his research into the fate of two Imperial German colonial possessions, German Cameroon and German Samoa, in the opening months of the Great War. He discusses why Germany acquired them, how Germany administered them […]

Book Review – Otto Carius, Tigers in The Mud (Lanham MD/USA: Stackpole, 2020)

This memoir covers Otto Carius’ times as an officer in panzer units fighting on the Eastern and Western Fronts during the Second World War. He was born in 1922 in Zweibrücken, near the French border. He originally enlisted in the infantry but was transferred to the panzer corps. He began his war as a loader […]

Conbributors needed!

The Combat Morale Podcast is recording its second season and is looking for contributors.   This is a new podcast that aims to provoke debate and discourse around what shapes and influences the morale and motivations of combatants in war. It seeks to answer the eternal question; what makes people fight (or not) armed conflicts? […]

Ep262 – WW1 Officers facing disgrace in 1920s courtrooms – Dr Frances Hurd

Historian Dr Frances Hurd talks about her research into officers who fall foul of the law in the 1920s. She examines three officers who found themselves in the courts after the war. Charles Reid Wodehouse appeared in court on various charges, including passing dud cheques, impersonation, staying in fashionable hotels and restaurants under a false […]

Book Review – Erwin Bartmann, Für Volk and Führer: The Memoir of a Veteran of the 1st SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler, (Solihull, UK: Helion & Co., 2013)

Erwin Bartman’s 2013 autobiography covers his early life growing up in 1930s Nazi Germany and his subsequent service in the 1st SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler (LAH) during the Second World War. He joined the LAH in May 1941 and fought with the unit in the Soviet Union and France until he was […]

Ep261a – In the Centennial Footsteps of the Great War – Attila Szalay-Berzeviczy

In this special podcast, I talk to historian and photographer Attila Szalay-Berzeviczy about the launch of his book In the Centennial Footsteps of the Great War. The two-volume book chronicles and explains the historical events of the Great War through photos taken by the author one hundred years later, between 2014 and 2021, in each and every theatre […]

Ep261 – Teaching the Great War Kingham Hill School – Donna Saxby & Gareth Williams

History teacher Gareth Williams and librarian Donna Saxby from Kingham Hill School in Oxfordshire, talk about how they teach the Great War to their pupils. They  outline how they encourage pupils to research former pupils from the school who served in the Great War using primary documents. They also have a regular programme of battlefield […]

Ep260 – Subterranean operations in WW1 – Dr Matt Leonard

Historian and modern conflict archaeologist Dr Matt Leonard talks about subterranean operations in WW1. Matt discusses how the extent, scope and nature of below ground activities, their purpose and tactical and strategic impact. He is a member of the Durand Group and he continues to conduct regular archaeological and anthropological research in France and Belgium, […]

Book Review – Rudi Stiebritz, Pawn of War (Harnwell, Vic/Australia: Temple House, 2001)

Pawn of War is Rudi Stiebritz’s account of his service in the Wehrmacht serving on the Eastern Front in the Second World War and his captivity as a Soviet POW in the four years after the defeat of Nazi Germany. Stiebritz serviced predominantly with the 125th Infantry Division where he was a pioneer in the […]

Book Review – Bruce Cherry, They Didn’t Want to Die Virgins: Sex and Morale in the British Army on the Western Front 1914-18 (Solihull: Helion, 2016)

  Bruce Cherry’s book seeks to ‘reappraise the sex life’ of the British soldier serving on the Western Front during the Great War.[1] The motivation for his investigation is that ‘respected historians…have denied or underplayed the amount of sexual activity’ that soldiers had and this has led to a ‘historical and subliminal cover up’ of […]

Ep258 – Dissent and indiscipline in the Indian Army during WW1 – Dr Adam Prime

Dr Adam Prime talks about his research into dissent and indiscipline in the Indian Army during the Great War. Adam outlines the number of incidents of dissent, ill-discipline and mutiny by Indian Army units, the reasons for this discontent and the actions taken by the military authorities to manage the problem. Adam is an independent […]

BOOK REVIEW – J. Baynes, Morale, a Study of Men and Courage, (Barnsley: Pen & Sword, 1967 [Reprint 1987])

John Baynes’ book Morale explores the motivation and morale of officers and other ranks serving in the 2nd Scottish Rifles (Cameronians) during their involvement in the Battle of Nerve Chappelle in March 1915. At the end of the battle, on the night of 14-15 March, the unit was commanded by 2nd Lieutenant Somervail and one […]

Ep257  – Visiting the battlefields in France and Belgium – Tom Strickland

Author, teacher and historian Tom Strickland talks about his recent book, Following in the Footsteps of Heroes, which is a new guide to the battlefield sites of France and Belgium. Tom talks about the book, its target audience and some of the sites he covers. This book is published by Sabrestorm Publishing. Tom is a […]

Book Review – Denis Winter, Death’s Men (London: Allen Lane, 1978)

Denis Winter’s Death’s Men is a classic of the new type of ‘bottom up’ history the emerged in the late 1970s. This new genre aimed to explore the Great War from the perspective of the average combatant and a series of books were published that aimed to do this notably, Martin Middlebrook’s First Day on […]

Ep256 – Fighting at the Battle of the Isonzo on your computer – Jos Hoebe

Jos Hoebe, talks about the new Great War computer game Isonzo, that he helped develop with Netherlands game developers Game Drive. Isonzo is the third Great War game he has worked on, the other two being Tannenberg and Verdun. Isonzo is a first person shooter game set on the Italian Front as Italy clashes with […]

Book Review – Johann Voss, Black Edelweiss (Bedford, Penn/USA: Aberjona, 2002)

Black Edelweiss is Johann Voss’ account of his service in the 6th SS Mountain Division during the Second World War. In early 1943, aged 17, he joined the 11th SS Mountain Regiment as a machine gunner and saw action in Soviet Karelia, Finland and the Vosges in France before being captured by US forces in […]

Ep255 – Association Football on the Home Front – Dr Alexander Jackson

Dr Alexander Jackson talks about his recent book Football’s Great War, Association Football on the English Home Front. Alex talks about the so-called ‘anti-football debate’ that took place in 1914/5 and how amateur and professional players, clubs and the Football Association responded to this debate. He also talks about how football clubs, local amateur leagues […]

Book Review – Paul Martelli, On the Devil’s Tail: In Combat With the Waffen-SS on the Eastern Front 1945, and With the French in Indochina 1951–54 (Solihull: Helion & Co, 2015)

On the Devil’s Tail is the memoir of Paul Martelli and covers a decade of his life and military service fighting in the Waffen SS at the end of the Second World War and as a corporal with French forces in Indochina fighting Vietnamese insurgents. Martelli’s account suggests that he was born in May 1929 […]

Book Review – Wilhelm Pruller, Diary of a German Soldier (New York, USA: Coward McCann, 1963)

The Diary of a German Soldier is the journal of Wilhelm Pruller kept during his service in the Wehrmacht during the Second World War. He served with the 10th and 11th Rifle Regiments, both formations part of the 9th Panzer Division.[1] Pruller served in both an infantry company and as part of the regimental staff […]

Ep253 – The Kaiser during the Great War – Prof Matt Fitzpatrick

Historian Professor Matt Fitzpatrick, Professor in the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences at Flinders University in Australia, talks about his research into the role of Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany during the Great War. Wilhelm II was c controversial figure and Matt discusses his life, his political and military role during the Great war […]

Book Review – Peter Stanley, Bad Characters (ReadHowYouWant edn, 2010)

In this book, Peter Stanley outlines the military ‘crime’ that members of the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) committed as part of their war service in the Middle East, Britain and Flanders during the Great War. He wrote it because ‘hundreds of books have been written about the ‘good’ – the most distinguished battalions, the best […]

Ep252 – Frank Prewett and the Great War – Prof  Joy Porter

Historian and author Professor Joy Porter, Professor of Indigenous & Environmental History and Leverhulme Major Research Fellow at the University of Hull, talks about her recent book looking at the life of Canadian war poet Frank Prewett. Prewett is a relatively unknown poet, he served on the Western Front ans suffered from shellshock. While recovering […]

Book Review – Dale Blair, Dinkum Diggers. An Australian Battalion at War (Melbourne, Australia: Melbourne University Press, 2001)

Dale Blair’s book compares the historical construction of the ‘digger’, the fabled Australian volunteer soldier who fought during the Great War, against the actual experience of ordinary Australian infantryman who fought with the 1st Battalion, Australian Imperial Force (AIF) at Gallipoli and Flanders. The ‘digger’ ideal emerged during the Great War. One description was cited […]

Ep251 – Debating America’s response to the Great War – Dr Neil Lanctot

Historian Dr Neil Lanctot talks about his recent book, The Approaching Storm, that explores the domestic debates and discussions that informed America’s response to the outbreak of the Great War and its eventual declaration of war in April 1917. The book explores the perspectives of three prominent US newsmakers – President Woodrow Wilson, former President […]

BOOK REVIEW – Bruno Manz, A Mind in Prison (Dulles, VA/USA: Brasseys, 2001)

Bruno Manz served as a NCO in the Luftwaffe and an unnamed mountain infantry battalion in Finland and Norway during the Second World War where he fought the Red Army and latterly, the Finnish Army. A Mind in Prison is his memoir of his childhood, military service and post-war life before he emigrated to the […]

BOOK REVIEW – James E. Kitchen, The British Imperial Army in the Middle East: Morale and Military Identity in the Sinai and Palestine Campaigns, 1916-18 (London/New York: Bloomsbury, 2014)

This book was one I had wanted to read properly for a long time; Christmas 2021 seemed the best time to read it. My maternal grandfather served in the Palestine Campaign in 1917-1918 as an officer in the Royal Garrison Artillery. I had hoped Kitchen’s book would give me some insight my grandfather’s experience but […]

Ep249 – The Illustrated Chronicle in WW1 – Peter Welsh

Historian Peter Welsh talks about his research into the daily Northumbrian newspaper, the Illustrated Chronicle, and the coverage before, during and after the Great War. This paper ran from 1910 to 1925 and Peter has compiled a database of all 29,402 images of soldiers that appeared in the publication. He discusses the role of the […]

Book Review – James Roberts, Killer Butterflies – Combat, Psychology and Morale in the British 19th (Western) Division 1915–18 (Solihull: Helion, 2017)

The premise of James Robert’s book is fascinating and intriguing. His study has two objectives. Firstly, to examine what British infantrymen did during battle in the Great War, especially in relation to fighting and killing the enemy.[1][2] Secondly, to gauge the morale of the soldiers during major battles of the conflict.[3] The 19th (Western) Infantry […]

Ep248 – 2nd line TF divisions in WW1 – Dr Bill Mitchinson

Author and historian Dr Bill Mitchinson talks about his latest book ‘Of No Earthly Use’ that explores the role, contribution and effectiveness of 2nd line Territorial Force divisions on the Western Front during the Great War. Raised late in the war and deployed from 1917, Bill talks about the role, effectiveness and legacy of these […]

Book Review – Claus Neuber, Marching from Defeat (Barnsley: Pen & Sword, 2020)

Marching from Defeat: Surviving the Collapse of the German Army in the Soviet Union, 1944 is the personal narrative of German Army artillery Lieutenant Claus Neuber and his journey back to German lines after being trapped behind the Soviet positions. Neuber served in the 1st Battalion of the 18th Artillery Regiment that was part of […]

Ep247 – The Punjab record project – Dr Gavin Rand

Historian Dr Gavin Rand, Principal Lecturer at the University of Greenwich talks about the recent discovery and digitisation of 320k records of troops from the Punjab who fought for the British Empire during the Great War. These files were found in the depths of the Lahore Museum in Pakistan have been digitised http://punjabww1.com/ In this interview, […]

Book Review – Herbert Maeger, Lost Honour, Betrayed Loyalty (London: Frontline, 2018)

 Lost Honour, Betrayed Loyalty is the memoir of Herbert Maeger who fought with German forces during the Second World War. He initially joined the 1st SS Panzer Division “Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler” (LAH) in September 1941, forced to enlist to prevent action being taken against his mother who had made a derogatory remark about Hitler.[1] […]

Episode 11 of Season One of the Combat Morale Podcast is out today (17.3.22).

Dr Linsey Robb, Associate Professor in Modern British History at the University of Northumbria, talks about the motivation of the British civilian worker in WW2.You can listen here https://bit.ly/3KViBbxDuring the Second World War, The British government mobilised civilians more effectively than any other combatant nation. By 1944, a third of the civilian population were engaged in […]

Ep246 – Centre for Experimental Archaeology and the Great War – Andy Robertshaw

Archaeologist, historian and author Andy Robertshaw talks about his work with the Centre for Experimental Military Archaeology (CEMA) at the Kent Event Centre in Detling. CEMA is the home of pan-historical experimentation concerning methods of military attack and defence, and of soldiers’ day-to-day lives, from the Roman period to the Second World War. Andy outlines […]

Book Review – Franz Frisch, Condemned to Live (Shippensburg, PA/USA: Burd Street, 2000)

Condemned to Live is the memoir of Franz Frisch during his service in the Wehrmacht during the Second World War. He served as a private in two artillery regiments, the 109th and 557th, and saw action in Poland, France, the Soviet Union, Sicily and Italy.[1] Frisch was born in Vienna in 1919 and conscripted into […]

Episode 10 of Season One of the Combat Morale Podcast is out today (10.3.22).

Recent doctoral graduate Dr Drew Ryder talks about the motivation and morale of the British Army combatant fighting in in Korea, 1950-53. You can listen here https://bit.ly/3hSTdXi In 1950, communist North Korea attacked its southern neighbour sparking a three year war that lasted until 1953 when an armistice was declared. Britain committed troops as part of […]

Ep245 – Brian Feeney – Antrim and the Irish Revolution, 1912 – 23

Journalist and historian, Dr Brian Feeney talks about his recent book exploring the impact of the Great War and  Irish War of Independence on the County of Antrim in Ulster. Antrim in the early 20th century contained most of Belfast – the largest city in Ireland – which dominated the economy of the north-east. Belfast […]

Book Review – Solomon Perel, Europa Europa (Munich: Wilhelm Heyne Verlag, 1993)

  This book is the memoir of Solomon Perel’s adventures during the Second World War. It is a well-known story and was told in the film of the same name released in 1990.   Perel was born into a Jewish family living in Peine, near Brunswick, in northern Germany in 1925.[1] In 1935, his parents […]

Episode 9 of Season One of the Combat Morale Podcast is out today (3.3.22)

Historian, lawyer and author Andrea Hetherington talks about her recent book on British Army deserters on the British home front during WW1. You can listen here (https://bit.ly/3HEHl5u)During that war, more than 80,000 cases of desertion were tried at a court martial on the home front. Andrea talks about the many motivations for absence or desertion […]

Ep244 – A legacy of WW1 – Hindenburg, Ludendorff and Hitler – Alex Clifford

Historian and author Alex Clifford talks about his recent book on Hindenburg and Ludendorff and how their Great War experience assisted in the rise of Hitler and the Nazis. He explores two of twentieth-century history’s most significant figures who have been largely forgotten – Paul von Hindenburg and Erich Ludendorff, Germany’s First World War leaders, […]

Book Review – Thomas Kühne, The Rise and Fall of Comradeship: Hitler’s Soldiers, Male Bonding and Mass Violence in the Twentieth Century (Cambridge, UK: CUP, 2017)

Thomas Kühne’s book examines the practice, meaning, definition and idea of comradeship amongst German soldiers fighting in the Second World War.[1] He defines comradeship as the ‘relationship people who cooperate, work, and live together not by choice but by coercion, accident or fate’. This is different from friendship that is rooted in the ‘self’ and […]

Ep243 – Discipline in the AIF in WW1 – Prof Peter Stanley

Prof. Peter Stanley talks about the discipline and dissent in the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) during the Great War. This interview is based on Peter’s 2011 book, ‘Bad Characters’, that examines the nature, extent and scope of ill-discipline, military crime and protest within units of the AIF. The AIF reported rates of desertion, absence without […]

Book Review – Klaus Willmann [Lothar Herrmann], Death March Through Russia (Barnsley, Yorkshire/UK: GreenHill, 2019)

Death March Through Russia is the narrative that author Klaus Willman wrote of former German soldier Lothar Herrmann’s service in the Wehrmacht during the Second World War and subsequent time in captivity as a Soviet POW.[1] Herrmann was born in Breslau, modern-day Wroclaw in Poland, in September 1920 and he trained as a house painter […]

Ep242 – Frances Hurd – Sex, violence and alcohol – some after – effects of the Great War

Historian Frances Hurd talks about her research into how the traumatic impact of the Great War affected former veterans and their families. Frances quotes the author Hugh McManners (a Falklands veteran) who said that ‘war is the most traumatic life event that any human can experience, a damaging combination of danger, uncertainty and horror.’ Her […]

Book Review – Erhard Steiniger, Radio Operator on the Eastern Front (Barnsley, Yorkshire/UK: Greenhill, 2019)

Erhard Steiniger’s account covers his early life as a member of the German community in the Sudetenland area of Czechoslovakia and his service in the Wehrmacht during the Second World War. Steiniger was born in Langugest, Czechoslovakia, into the German-speaking minority known as Sudeten Germans.[1] His father was a farmer and Steiniger, after leaving school […]

Ep241 – Simon Verdegem – Lost but not forgotten. The archaeological recovery of FWW casualties

Belgian battlefield archaeologist Simon Verdegem talks about his work recovering First World War casualties in Belgium. The former battlefields of Belgium still harbour their mortal remains. It is estimated that around 55,000 British war dead have never been recovered. Every year the remains of Great War soldiers are recovered each year through archaeological digs that […]

Book Review – Gerry Villani [the account of Raymond Lemaire], The Crusade of a Walloon Volunteer, August 8 1941 – May 5 1945 (Self-published: Lulu, 2019)

The Crusade of a Walloon Volunteer, August 8 1941 – May 5 1945 is the memoir of Raymond Lemaire who served as a member of the Walloon Legion fighting for the Germans on the Eastern Front during the Second World War. The book was put together by Canadian historian Gerry Villani from 11 hours of […]

Downloads for the WFA’s Mentioned in Dispatches podcast for Q4, 2021

This post is an update on the hits for the Western Front Association’s weekly podcast Mentioned in Dispatches.   The podcast is available on a range of Apple and Android platforms through apps such as iTunes, Acast, Castbox. Stitcher and TuneIn.   Since February 2017 to end of December 2021, 240 episodes of the podcast […]

Ep240 – Dr Emily Mayhew – Stretcher Bearers on the Western Front

Military medical historian Dr Emily Mayhew talks about the role of stretcher bearers during the Great War. Stretcher bearers played a major role in extracting and saving wounded men from the battlefield and Emily talks about who they were, what they did and what difference they made. She works as a Visiting Researcher and historian […]

Book Review – Claus Sellier, Walking Away from the Reich (Central Point, OR/USA: Hellgate, 1999)

Walking Away from the Reich is Claus Sellier’s narrative of his time as a soldier in the Wehrmacht fighting partisans and the Red Army in the Balkans from 1944 to 1945. Sellier came from a wealthy Munich family. He was educated at an elite boarding school attended by boys from ‘aristocratic households…there were sons of dukes, […]

Ep239 – Dr John Burke – Roscommon during the Great War and after

Historian and author Dr John Burke talks about the history of Roscommon in the 1912–23 during the Irish revolutionary period which covers the Great War, Irish War of Independence and Irish Civil War. Roscommon was an agricultural area which had been solid political territory of the Irish Parliamentary Party. However, during the war, the area […]

Book Review – Peter Bamm, The Invisible Flag (London: Penguin, 1962)

 Peter Bamm’s memoir is a fascinating account of his time as a Wehrmacht combat surgeon fighting on the Eastern Front during the Second World War. First published in English in 1956, the narrative chronicles Bamm’s experiences caring for wounded soldiers, POWs and civilians from the invasion of Russia in 1941 until he eventually escapes Russian […]

Book Review – Ann Buckley (Ed.) German Prisoners of the Great War (Barnsley: Pen & Sword, 2021)

(This review appeared in the WFA’s Stand To! journal in late 2021.) German Prisoners of the Great War is the first English translation of the 1920 book Kriegsgefangen in Skipton, an edited volume of German officers’ experiences as prisoners of war (POW) during the Great War at Raikeswood Camp (as it was known locally) in […]

Book Review – Gunter Koschorrek, Blood Red Snow (Barnsley: Frontline, 2018)

This book is the diary turned memoir of Gunter Koschorrek who served on the Eastern Front during the Second World War. From October 1942 until August 1944, he served in the 1st Battalion, 21st Panzergrenadier Regiment, 24 Panzer Division, seeing action at Stalingrad, the Nikopol Bridgehead and in Romania. After that, he served with a […]

Book Review – Andreas Hartinger (ed), Until the Eyes Shut [memoir of Hans Kahr] (Warsaw, Poland: Amazon, 2019)

This book is the recollection of Han Kahr during his service as a machine gunner in the 138th Mountain Regiment, 3rd Mountain Division, between late 1943 to the end of the war.[1] Kahr was born in 1925 in Eastern Styria in Austria into an agricultural community where his father was a peasant farmer.[2] He enlisted […]

Book Review – Henry Metelmann, Through Hell for Hitler (Staplehurst: Spellmount, 1990)

Henry Metelmann’s memoir of his service in the Wehrmacht during the Second World War is one of the best accounts I have read. Metelmann served as a driver in the 22nd Panzer Division and saw action in the Crimea, Russia and Ukraine from the winter of 1941/2 until 1944 when he was injured. After that, […]

Book Review – Ernst Kern, War Diary 1941-45: A Report (New York: Vantage, 1993)

War Diary is Ernst Kern’s memoir of his service in the Wehrmacht on the Eastern Front from 1941 to 1944. He served as an infantryman and medical orderly with the 12 Company, 91st Mountain Regiment, 4th Mountain Division, and saw action in the Caucasus, Ukraine and Romania.[1] The narrative was compiled during 1945 while Kern […]

Ep231- Yugoslavia in the British imagination during WW1 – Dr Samuel Foster

Dr Samuel Foster, Visiting Fellow in the School of History, University of East Anglia, talks about his new book on Yugoslavia in the British Imagination. This book explores how the South Slavic Balkans, or the area that became Yugoslavia after 1918, was perceived in the British press, policy makers, travel writers and opinion leaders before, during and after […]

Book review – Konrad Jarausch (ed), Reluctant Accomplice [the letters of Konrad Jarausch] (Princeton/Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2011)

This book is an edited collection of around 350 letters sent by German NCO Konrad Jarausch during his active service. They cover the time from 1939 until his death of typhoid fever in Russia on 27 January 1942.[1] In September 1939, Jarausch was mobilised from the reserves to serve with the V/XI battalion of the […]

Activity report for the Mentioned in Dispatches podcast, February 2017 to end of July 2021

Since February 2017 to end of July 2021, 220 episodes of the podcast have been broadcast and 413,890 downloads achieved.  The average number of downloads per programme is 1,881. The activity over the last four years is shown below. The number of downloads per show is set out below in decending order of popularity. Episode […]

Book Review – Georg Grossjohann, Five Years, Four Fronts (New York/USA: Ballentine, 1999)

Five Years, Four Fronts is Georg Grossjohann’s memoir that covers his service in the Wehrmacht during the Second World War.   Grossjohann served with the 21st Infantry Division in Poland, 161st Division during the invasion of France, the 332nd Division during the time between the end of the French campaign and start of Operation Barbarossa […]

Book Review – George Raugh, Unlikely Warrior A Jewish Soldier in Hitler’s Army (New York: Macmillan, 2015)

George Raugh served as a telegraphist in the communications section of the 2nd Battalion,158th Infantry Regiment, 282nd Division of the Wehrmacht.[1] He saw service in western Ukraine and Romania from December 1943 until his capture by the Russians in August 1944. His story is remarkable as he was one-quarter Jewish and under German race laws […]

Book Review – Helmut Pabst, The Outermost Frontier (London: William Kimber, 1986)

The Outermost Frontier is a transcription of series of letters sent by Helmut Pabst during his service in the 129th Infantry Division on the Eastern Front from the start of Operation Barbarossa to his death on 6th September 1943. Pabst was born in 1911 and before the war was a law student.[1] He started the […]

Book Review: Gottlob Bidermann, In Deadly Combat: A German Soldier’s Memoir of the Eastern Front (Kansas: University of Kansas, 2000)

Reading the marketing blurb on the flap copy for this book, it appeared to promise little more than a Sven Hassle action novel. The first paragraph tells that ‘in the hell that was World War II, the Eastern Front was its heart of fire and ice. Gottlob Herbert Bidermann served in that lethal theater from […]

Book review – Guy Warner, Flying from Malone (Newtownards, NI – Colourpoint Books, 2012)

Flying from Malone is Guy Warner’s history of Belfast’s first airport that operated from 1924-25. The aerodrome was located in the south of the city off the Malone Road on the site now occupied by the Taughsmonagh housing estate. The land for the site was purchased by the council in the early 1920s and flights […]

Book Review – Susan B. Cunningham, Sir Crawford McCullagh, Belfast’s Dick Whittington (Donaghadee, NI: Ballyhay, 2016)

The book Sir Crawford McCullagh, Belfast’s Dick Whittington, is a biography of The Rt Hon Sir Crawford McCullagh, 1st Baronet (1868-1948) who was a draper, unionist councillor on Belfast City Council and held the position of Lord Mayor for a record 17 times.[1]   McCullagh came from humble origins. He grew up in County Armagh, the fifth […]

Book Review – Brian M. Walker, A History of St George’s Church (Belfast: Ulster History Foundation, 2016)

Brian M. Walker’s book is an excellent chronological institutional history of St George’s church located on High Street, Belfast, Northern Ireland. It was written to mark the church’s 200th anniversary in 2016. The book starts by considering the previous structures which stood on the site before St George’s was constructed in the early 19th century. […]

Activity report for the Mentioned in Dispatches podcast, February 2017 to end of March 2021

Since February 2017 to end of December 2020, 202 episodes of the podcast have been broadcast. Between the launch of the podcast on 13 February, 2017 and the end of March 2021, podcast episodes have been downloaded 373, 897 times. The average number of downloads per programme is 1,851. The activity over the last four […]

Book Review – John Killen, A History of the Linen Hall Library 1788-1988 (Belfast: Linen Hall Library, 1990)

John Killen’s A History of the Linen Hall Library 1788-1988 is a solid and worthy chronological narrative of the first two centuries of the Linen Hall Library (LHL). He starts by setting out how the library came of the intellectual ideas of the enlightenment and the social movement amongst literate and wealthy middle-class people to […]

Book Review – Lyn Gallagher, The Albert Memorial Clock (Belfast: The Ulster Architectural Heritage Society, 2004)

Lyn Gallagher’s The Albert Memorial Clock is a short pamphlet on the design, building and restoration of the building after which her publication is named. It was written to mark the completion of restoration work on the Albert Memorial Clock (AMC) in 2002. The original structure was completed in 1869 to commemorate Queen Victoria’s late […]

Book Review – Francis Higgins, Religion, Riots and Rebels, The Incredible History of Brown’s Square Belfast (Belfast: Belfast Lad, 2020)

Francis Higgins’ book, Religion, Riots and Rebels, examines the social and economic history of Brown Square and its residents from its establishment in the late eighteenth century to the present day. Today, this area is located in the centre of Belfast. It stands west of the City’s Cathedral quarter, its cultural and tourist hub, and […]

Book Review – J.C. Beckett (Ed), Belfast, The Making of a City (Belfast: Appletree Press, 2003)

J.C. Beckett’s Belfast, The Making of a City is an anthology of 12 essays by different historians on the social, political, economic and cultural development of Belfast during the Victorian and Edwardian periods. The nineteenth-century marked the period when the town of Belfast developed from a provincial market town of 20,000 in 1800 to an […]

Book Review – Friedrich Reiner Nieman, Feldpost [Denis Havel (Ed.)] (Stroud, Gloucestershire: Fonthill, 2016)

Feldpost is a collection of letters from Friedrich Reiner Niemann who served with the 58th Infantry Regiment that was part of the German 6th Infantry Division during the Second World War.[1] The correspondence covers his life and front line experiences on the Eastern Front from 1941 to 1945. Niemann came from a well to do […]

Ep201 – Jan Smuts – Prof. Ian Van Der Waag & Dr Tony Garcia

Professor Ian Van Der Waag, Professor and Head of Department of Military History at Stellenbosch University, and Dr Tony Garcia, Research Fellow History at Stellenbosch University, talk about their research into the life and career of  South African statesman, soldier and politician Jan Smuts, before and during the Great War.

Ep199 – New York’s Silk Stocking Regiment and the Breaking of the Hindenburg Line – Stephen L. Harris

American historian and author Stephen L. Harris talks about his book recent book Duty, Honor, Privilege that looks at the New York’s Silk Stocking Regiment and how it ‘broke’ the Hindenburg Line in 1918. This book is published by Potomac Books.

Book Review: Helmut Altner, Berlin Soldier (Stroud: History Press, 2008 [1948])

 Helmut Altner’s memoir covers his period as a 17-year-old conscript soldier fighting in the defence of Berlin from his enlistment on 29 March 1945 to his capture by Soviet forces on 3 May. He initially joined the Grenadier and Training Replacement Battalion 309 that was part of the 309th ‘Berlin’ Infantry Division formed in February […]

Book Review – Martin Poppel, Heaven & Hell, The War Diary of a German Paratrooper (Staplehurst: Spellmount, 1988)

  Martin Poppel’s Heaven and Hell is his account of his service in the German Fallschirmjaeger (Parachute hunters) during the Second World War. He enlisted in 1938 as a recruit in the 1st Parachute Division and saw action in Poland, Norway and Holland before being promoted to Second Lieutenant in December 1941.  Until October 1943, […]

Ep196 – Men of the AEF’s ‘lost battalion’ – Dr Edward Lengel

  Historian and writer Professor Edward G Lengel talks about his book, Never in Finer Company: The Men of the Great War’s Lost Battalion.  This book investigates the action in which men from four different infantry battalions of the 77th Division of the American Expeditionary Force, were isolated by German forces during an American attack in […]

Book Review: Herman Schmidt, Diary of a German Soldier 1939-1945 (Amazon, n.d.),

Herman Schmidt’s Diary of a German Soldier 1939-1945 is more a memoir rather than a diary; the title is misleading. Schmidt was drafted into the German army in September 1939 at the age of 39.[1] The majority of his service was in various menial roles around the horse supply unit for the 18th Army in […]

Book Review – John Stieber, Against the Odds (Dublin: Poolbeg Press, 2016)

John Stieber’s account covers his time as a private in the Herman Goring Division, fighting on the Eastern Front July in late 1944 and 1945. He was born in 1926 of Czech-Austrian parents and grew up in England and Ireland in the 1920s and 1930s as his father ran various sugar refineries. In 1939, aged […]

Ep192 – ‘The Fighting Irish’ – The US 69th Infantry Regiment in WW1- Stephen L. Harris

American historian and author Stephen L. Harris talks about his recent book Duffy’s War that looks at the wartime service of the US 69th Infantry Regiment, their padre Fr. Francis Duffy and commander ‘Wild Bill’ Donovan during their deployment in France. This book is published by Potomac Books.

Ep191 -The German occupation of France in WW1 – Dr James Connolly

 Historian Dr James Connolly, Lecturer in Modern French History at University College London about his research into the French experience of military occupation by German forces during WW1. James has written ‘The experience of occupation in the Nord, 1914– 18’. This is published by Manchester University Press.

Book Review – William Lubbeck, At Leningrad’s Gates (Philadelphia, PA/USA: Casement, 2006)

This is the chronological memoir of William Lubbeck who served throughout the Second World War as a ranker and officer in the German 58th Infantry Division. He served as a forward observer for the heavy weapons support company (13th Company) of the 154th Infantry Regiment and he went onto command that formation. He saw service […]

Activity report for the Mentioned in Dispatches podcast, February 2017 to end of December 2020.

Since February 2017 to end of December 2020, 189 episodes of the podcast have been broadcast. Between the launch of the podcast on 13 February, 2017 and the end of December 2020, podcast episodes have been downloaded 346,741 times.  To date (31 December 2020), we have had 129,330 complete downloads and 217,411 partial downloads.   […]

Book review: Armin Scheiderbauer, Adventures in My Youth: A German Soldier on the Eastern Front, 1941-1945 (Solihull: Helion, 2003)

Armim Scheiderbauer was born in 1924 in Styria, south-east Austria, his father being a Protestant minister. In August 1941, Scheiderbauer was drafted into the German Army and became an officer cadet. From summer 1942, he served for all his time in uniform as an infantry officer with the 252nd Infantry Division where he was a […]

The Combat Morale Podcast

I have established a new podcast titled the Combat Morale Podcast. It aims to explore what makes combatants fight (or not) in armed conflict. The podcast has a very broad remit covering all conflicts, asymmetric and conventional and seeks to be multidisciplinary hosting interviews with experts drawn from psychology, sociology, history policy and the armed […]

A ‘mere six weeks’? A comparative study re-examining the longevity of infantry officers’ frontline service during the Great War

My latest article in War in History examines the length of time officers actually served in infantry units during the Great War Veteran testimony after the Great War and current popular legend states that regimental officers in frontline infantry battalions during the Great War served around six weeks before death or injury ended their service. […]

Book Review – Uwe Timm, In My Brother’s Shadow (London: Bloomsbury, 2005)

Uwe Timm’s book explores the life of his brother Franz-Heinz, a member of the Waffen SS and the impact Franz-Heinz’s death had on his parents and Uwe’s relationship with them in post-war West Germany.   Born in 1940, Uwe was the youngest of three siblings in a middle-class Hamburg family. Franz-Heinz was Uwe’s senior by […]

Book Review – Alfred Novonty, The Good Soldier (Bedford, Penn: Aberjona, 2003)

This book is the memoir of Austrian Alfred Novotny that covers his service in the Wehrmacht from 1942 to 1945 and subsequent time as a post-war Soviet captive. Novotny was born in Vienna on 1 April 1924. His father was a truck driver for a diary and also an active Social Democrat.[1] Before the war, […]

Book Review – Hans Heinz Rehfeldt, Mortar Gunner on the Eastern Front Vols 1 &2 (Barnsley: Greenhill, 2019)

Hans Heinz Rehfeldt served on the eastern front during World War II. He joined the Reinforced Infantry Battalion Grossdeutschland in November 1941 and remained with this formation when it was expanded into a full division until the end of the war when he was captured by the Americans in May 1945. He initially joined a […]

Book Review – Hans Schäufler, Panzers on the Vistula (Barnsley: Pen & Sword, 2018).

Hans Schäufler was a signals officer and second lieutenant in 35th Panzer Regiment, 4th Panzer Division, on the Eastern Front. His account covers his experience of the war from January to May, 1945. He took part in the German retreat from Latvia to East Prussia and was trapped in Danzig when the city fell to […]

Ep178 – Irish recruitment in the GW – Dr Tim Bowman, Dr Michael Wheatley & Dr William Butler

Dr Timothy Bowman, a Reader in modern British military history, University of Kent, Dr William Butler, the Head of Military Records, The National Archives, UK and Dr Michael Wheatley, an independent researcher and writes on early twentieth-century Irish politics, talk about their latest book, The Disparity of Sacrifice. This book examines the military recruitment in […]

Downloads for the Mentioned in Dispatches podcast – to end of September 2020

Since February 2017 to end of September 2020, 178 episodes of the podcast have been broadcast. The podcast is available on a range of Apple and Android platforms through apps such as iTunes, Acast, Spotify, Castbox. Stitcher and TuneIn. Between the launch of the podcast on 13 February, 2017 and the end of September 2020, […]

Ep176 – 1 million rounds from a Vickers’ gun in 12 hours: myth or truth? Dr Rich Willis & Richard Fisher

Dr Rich Willis and Richard Fisher, Founder and Director of the Vickers Machine Gun Research Association, talk about their research into the legend that ten guns of the 100th Machine Gun Company in August 1916 fired off 1,000,000 rounds in a twelve-hour period throughout fighting at High Wood during the Battle of the Somme.

Book Review Christine Alexander & Mason Kunze, Eastern Inferno, The Journals of a German Panzerjager on the Eastern Front, 1941-1943 [Hans Roth] (Oxford: Casement, 2010)

Hans Roth was a private and corporal in the anti-tank battalion of the 299th Division and served with them from the start of Operation Barbarossa in June 1941 to his death in June 1944. During his service, he fought with Sixth Army that was part of Army Group South and took part in operations to […]

Book Review – Willy Peter Reese, A Stranger to Myself: The Inhumanity of War, 1941-1944 (New York, USA: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2005)

  A Stranger to Myself is the manuscript that German soldier Willy Peter Reese compiled on his service on the Eastern Front. It is a memoir that he wrote on his last home leave to Germany in early 1944 before he returned to the front where he subsequently disappeared and was  presumed killed.[1] He subtitled […]

Book Review: Horst Fuchs Richardson (Ed.), Your Loyal and Loving Son: The Letters of Tank Gunner Karl Fuchs, 1937-41. (Washington: Brassey’s, 2003)

The letters of Karl Fuchs present a different view of the German soldier in the Second World War than is frequently portrayed in the crude caricatures represented in British popular culture. There are three types of German serviceman that occupy this genre and all are demonstrated in the 1963 film, The Great Escape that portrays […]

Book Review: Oskar Scheja, The Man in the Black Fur Coat (Privately published, 2014)

Oskar Scheja’s account covers his time as a German soldier and Soviet POW during the Second World war. He rode with German forces into Russia in June 1941 as part of the 5th Company, 2nd Battalion, 525 Infantry Brigade, 298th Infantry Division.[1] In October 1942, he was transferred to the 164th  Infantry Division after being […]

Book Review: Armin Bottger, To the Gate of Hell (London: Frontline, 2012)

Armin Bottger was a radio operator in the German Army during the Second World fighting in Panzer IV tanks. He served as a private in the 12th Squadron, 24th Panzer Regiment that was part of the 24th Panzer Division that saw action in France, Italy and Eastern Front from 1943 until the summer of 1944. […]

Book Review – Bruno Friesen, Panzer Gunner (Mechanicsburg, PA, USA: Stackpole, 2008)

Bruno Friesen’s memoir covers his time as a gunner in Wehrmacht during the Second World War. He saw action with the 8th Company of the 25th Panzer Regiment from July 1944 until he was wounded in March 1945. Throughout his time with the unit, he served as part of the 7th Panzer Division and saw […]

Ep170 – Louis Botha, South African PM during WW1 – Prof. Ian Van Der Waag & Dr Tony Garcia

Professor Ian Van Der Waag, Professor and Head of Department of Military History at Stellenbosch University, and Dr Tony Garcia, an independent scholar talk about their research into life and career of Louis Botha, Boer military commander and South African Prime Minister before and during the Great War.

Book Review – David Garden & Kenneth Andrew (Eds), The War Diaries of a Panzer Soldier, Erich Hager with the 17th Panzer Division on the Russian Front, 1941-1945 (Atglen PA/USA: Schiffer Military History, 2010)

David Garden and Kenneth Andrew have done a sterling effort to present, translate and present the diaries that German soldier Erich Hager kept for most of his service on the Eastern Front during the Second World War. Hager served as a ranker and Unteroffizier [Lance Sergeant] in 39th Panzer Regiment, 17th Panzer Division, throughout the […]

Downloads for the Mentioned in Dispatches podcast – to end of June 2020

Since February 2017 to the end of June 2020, 168 episodes of the podcast have been broadcast. The podcast is available on a range of Apple and Android platforms through apps such as iTunes, Acast, Spotify, Castbox. Stitcher and TuneIn. Between the launch of the podcast on 13 February, 2017 and the end of June […]

Ep167 – Women as Veterans in post-WW1 France and Britain – Prof. Alison Fell

Professor Alison Fell, Professor of French Cultural History at the University of Leeds, talks about her recent book on women as veterans in post-Great War France and Britain. Alison’s book examines the cultural and social identity some women adopted, or were given, as war veterans in the 1920s and how this was received by the […]

Ep162 – Combat, identity and power in the Indian Army during WW1 – Prof. Kate Imy

Kate Imy, Assistant Professor of History at the University of North Texas, talks about her recent book Faithful Fighters. Her book explores the Indian Army’s attempts to racialize and militarize the South Asian identities of its multi-racial, multi-linguistic, and multi-faith soldiery to secure their loyalty, cooperation. Her book is published by Standford University Press.

Downloads for the Mentioned in Dispatches podcast – to end of March 2020

Since February 2017 to end of March 2020, 154 episodes of the podcast have been broadcast. The podcast is available on a range of Apple and Android platforms through apps such as including iTunes, Acast and Castbox. Stitcher and TuneIn. Between the launch of the podcast on 13 February, 2017 and the end of March […]

Ep144 – Tony T – British West Indies Regiment and the Taranto 1918 Mutiny

Tony T, Oral Historian and Producer from Sweet Patootee productions, talks about a historical documentary he made with colleagues interviewing former black veterans who served in the British West Indies Regiment during the Great War and who witnessed their Regiment·s involvement in the mutiny at Taranto, Italy, in December 1918 (Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mutiny-Rianna-Scipio/dp/B07K1JHJTW).

Ep137 – The letters of Douglas Haig and Hugo De Pree – Prof. Gary Sheffield

Professor Gary Sheffield, Professor of War Studies at the University of Wolverhampton, talks about a collection of papers, In Haig’s Shadow, that he has recently edited and has been published by Greenhill Books. This volume features private papers from the De Pree family that include unseen correspondence from Field Marshall Sir Douglas Haig and Haig’s […]

Ep134 – Bainsfather’s ‘Other ‘ole’ cartoon – Dr Helen Brooks & Dr Pip Gregory

On this week’s Dispatches podcast, Dr Helen Brooks, Reader in Theatre and Cultural History, School of Arts, and Dr Philippa Gregory, History HPL Tutor, both from the University of Kent, talk about Bruce Bairnsfather’s famous ‘Other ‘Ole’ cartoon and its impact and resonance during the Great War and after.

Ep132 – A Lord Lieutenant at War – Dr Richard Batten

Dr Richard Batten, Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Exeter, talks about a collection of papers relating to the wartime experience of Hugh Fortescue, the Fourth Earl Fortescue, who was Lord Lieutenant for Devon during the Great War, that he has recently edited. These papers are collected in a volume produced by the Devon […]

Ep126 – The First World War in Computer Games – Dr Chris Kempshall

Dr Chris Kempshall, Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Army Leadership, Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, talks about his book on The First World War in Computer Games. This was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2015. Use the following token on palgrave.com (qj9JE7Czmn4DJFq) to get a 20% discount. Valid 2.9.19 to 30.9.19.

Ep118 – British, French and American Relations on the Western Front, 1914-1918 – Dr Chris Kempshall

Dr Chris Kempshall, Teaching Fellow in European History at the University of Sussex, talks about his book on the relationships between soldiers in the  British, French and American armies on the Western Front during the  Great War. This is the subject of his first book published by Palgrave Macmillan.

Book review: K.W. Noe, Reluctant Rebels: The Confederates Who Joined the Army after 1861 (Chapel Hill, 2010)

Kenneth Noe’s book examines those Confederate volunteers who were so-called ‘late enlisters’, those who joined the southern army after the rage militare of 1861 had died down.[1] He estimates that 180,000 joined up after 1861 and this group of men are neglected by historians and stereotyped as hesitant non-slave owning farmers. His book aims to […]

Book Review: G. Hamilton, McNamara’s Folly: The Use of Low-IQ Troops in the Vietnam War (Infinity Publishing, 2015)

Gregory Hamilton’s revealing book examines the Project 100,000 personnel selection policy introduced by Secretary of State of Defense Robert McNamara during the Vietnam War. The programme formally accepted men into the army who were previous ‘disqualified for military service under previous mental [and physical] standards’ by lowering ‘test score[s] and educational standards’ required for service.[1] […]

Book Review – George Lepre, Fragging: Why U.S. Soldiers Assaulted Their Officers in Vietnam (Lubbock, Tx, 2011)

George Lepre’s excellent book is the first academic study into the Vietnam War phenomenon known as ‘fragging’, where US servicemen sought to murder other American soldiers using fragmentation grenades. He estimates there were up to 1,000 attacks that resulted in at least 57 deaths. His publication examines why soldiers perpetrated these crimes and how the […]

Ep106 -The Impact of the First World War on Australian-British relations – Dr Jack Davies

Dr Jack Davies, Assistant Curator at the Science Museum, talks abou the impact of WW1 on Australian-British relations. This talk was given as part of the  The End of the War & The Reshaping of a Century International Conference held at the University of Wolverhampton in September last year.

Ep98 – Australian Corps Operations during the Hundred Days – Richard Stobo

Richard Stobo talks about, ‘The Australian Victories in France in 1918? An Examination of Australian Corps Operations during the Hundred Days’. This talk was given as part of the ‘End of the War & the Reshaping of a Century’ conference held at the University of Wolverhampton in September last year.

Ep97 – Witnessing the End of the German Occupation of Brussels,1918 – Prof Tammy Proctor

Professor Tammy Proctor from Utah State University gives a talk on the end of the German occupation of Brussels between the dates of October to December 1918. This talk was given as part of the ‘End of the War & the Reshaping of a Century’ conference held at the University of Wolverhampton in September last […]

Ep82a – Extra Episode – The Capture of the Riqueval Bridge – Jim Tanner

Former Brigadier Jim Tanner, current Chairman of Trustees at the Staffordshire Regimental Museum, talks about the capture of Riqueval Bridge over the St Quentin Canal by the 46th Midland Division, the centenary of which is being commemorated on Saturday 29 September 2018 at a ceremony on the bridge. At this ceremony, the memorial placed there […]

Ep63 – Blockade, economic warfare and the use of hunger during the Great War – Sir Hew Strachan

Sir Hew Strachan, patron of the WFA and Professor of International Relations at the University of St Andrews, delivers a lecture on blockade, economic warfare and the use of starvation during the Great War. This lecture was recorded at the WFA’s AGM in London last month.

Ep60 – Wherever the firing line extends – Ronan McGreevy

Irish Times Journalist Ronan McGreevy about his book Wherever the Firing line Extends, published by the History Press Ireland. This book examines the legacy of the 23 Irish memorials to fallen men on the Western Front. In the podcast, Ronan talks about documentary he made that looks at the Irish involvement in the 1917 campaign. […]

Ep38 – Spying for the Kaiser – Regina Diana and espionage in France – Dr Vivien Newman

Dr Vivien Newman talks about her new book (with David Alexander Scott Semeraro) on female agent Regina Diana who spied for the Germans in France during the Great War. Her book is titled Seductress, Siren, Spy: The Undercover World of Agent Regina Diana 1914-1918, and is published by Pen and Sword.

Ep27 – Black Watch volunteers in Dublin before the First World War – Ian Montgomery

Ian Montgomery, Co-chair, Antrim and Down WFA branch, talks on ‘Thoroughbred Irishmen: Black Watch volunteers in Dublin before the First World War’. This lecture was given at conference between the WFA and the Public Record Office for Northern Ireland on military traditions in Ireland.

Book Review: A.L. George, The Chinese Communist Army in Action: The Korean War and its Aftermath (New York, 1967)

Dr Alexander George’s book is a fascinating insight into how the newly created Chinese communist state in the late 1940’s sought to direct, sustain and shape small group relations in their People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and how this system functioned under the stresses of combat in during the Chinese intervention in Korea during 1950-51.

Book Review: J.A. Frank & G.A. Reaves, “Seeing the Elephant”: Raw Recruits at the Battle of Shiloh (Westport, Conn., 1989)

This excellent book examines the morale, attitudes and experience of Confederate and Union soldiers who fought at the Battle of Shiloh. It follows their journey from enlistment and training in 1861 at the start of the US Civil War, to their first experience of combat, ‘seeing the elephant’, at Shiloh in April 1862.

Ep15 – The Island of Ireland and the Great War in Flanders – Piet Chielens from In Flanders Fields Museum

Piet Chielens, the Coordinator of the In Flanders Fields Museum in Ypres, gives a guest lecture at the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland in Belfast on Thursday, 1st June, titled ‘The Island of Ireland and the Great War in Flanders’.

Book Review – S. Rabalais, General Fox Conner, Pershing’s Chief of Operations and Eisenhower’s Mentor (Havertown, Pa., 2016)

Steven Rabalais’ fascinating biography is the first to cover the life of US army officer Fox Conner (1874-1951). Connor served as ‘Black’ Jack Pershing’s Chief of Operations in the American Expeditionary Force (AEF) during the Great War and in the 1920’s became a close confidant, mentor and friend to Dwight Eisenhower.

Book Review: D. Bird, The Spirit of the Troops is Excellent, The 6th (Morayshire) Battalion, Seaforth Highlanders in the Great War 1914 – 1919 (Moray, 2008)

Derek Bird’s chronological account of the 1/6th (Morayshire) Battalion, Seaforth Highlanders, in the Great War is a solid unit history.

Book Review: S. Sandford, Neither Unionist or Nationalist, the 10th Irish Division in the Great War (Irish Academic Press, 2015)

Stephen Sandford’s excellent book on the 10th (Irish) Division is an in-depth study of the unit’s formation, its social composition, leadership and its service in the Eastern Mediterranean during the Great War.

The Memorial at Holy Trinity Church, Prince Consort Road, South Kensington

Holy Trinity church in Prince Consort Road, South Kensington, London, has a striking war memorial to its 43 parishioners who fought and fell during the Great War. They were predominantly residents of the local area and were mainly drawn from the wealthier professional middle classes or minor aristocracy who lived in the South Kensington area […]