In World War II, mighty political and technical forces were harnessed but, at the
end of the day, victory was secured and defeat suffered by the soldiers of the ground.
Gathered here are their own stories in their own words – eyewitness accounts of the
experience of battle.
These stories bear testimony to the many faces of soldiering in the greatest conflict
in human history. The reality of war with its strange combination of tedium, tension
and terror, is vividly evoked from titanic tank battles on the Eastern Front to the
savage fighting for small specks in the Pacific Ocean and the grim battles in the
The sights and sounds of war are described by those who fought on Crete, in the Western
Desert, in the Pacific and in northwest Europe. There is heroism under fire, the
grim humour of endurance, the exhilaration of victory and the despair of defeat.
From generals to GIs, these are the true stories of men at war.