Military Mindlessness: An Informal Compedium

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Overview

Military Mindlessness brings together anecdotes, poems, and stories inspired by the eccentricities of the military mind, or lack thereof. From battlefield to barracks, from various branches of the British armed forces - army, navy, and air force - Military Mindlessness contains tales of bravery, knavery, courage, and bewilderment; all in the face of overwhelming and disturbing misorganization. This updated American edition of what was initially issued in England in 1990, contains new material on the Falklands war between Argentina and Great Britain, and also coverage of the United States-led coalition against Saddam Hussein's Iraq - a conflict in which casualty rates were higher as a result of friendly fire than enemy fire power. Mr. Horricks tells this story with a humor that belies its seriousness. The theme and variations are simple enough: from the Boer War to the Iraq War, and as far afield as Indonesia and Egypt, mayhem as a result of mismanagement can occur at any time and any place. In short, Catch 22 did not describe an isolated moment, but a characteristic of modern military actions in an age of advanced technology.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781560001058
  • Publisher: Transaction Publishers
  • Publication date: 1/1/1993
  • Pages: 271

Meet the Author

Raymond Horricks is a biographer, writer, and independent record producer. He is the author of a companion volume: In Flight with the Eagle, A Guide to Napoleon's Elite; along with several books on musical figures and history.

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Table of Contents

The General: Siegfried Sassoon
Introduction
19th Century Mindlessness
Shillin' A Day 3
Against Infection and the Hand of War 4
The War To End All Wars 1914-18
from Blasting and Bombardiering 11
from Goodbye to All That 16
The M.O. Visits 18
A Rum Do 19
from The Blocking of Zeebrugge 20
The Kaiser's Realistic Ream 25
from A Touch of Genius - The Life of T.E. Lawrence 28
'In the Guardroom' from The Mint 28
Louse Hunting 31
Marching 32
At All Costs 33
Gallipoli 54
A Drink's a Drink 88
A Period on the Passchendale Ridge 89
The Retreat from Caporetto 91
Armistice Day, 1918 113
Mindlessness in Peacetime
from Wingate in Peace and War 117
The Raincoat 118
Trench Digging 118
A World in Turmoil 1939-45
Basic Defence 123
R.A.M.C. 125
Dakar 125
The RAF Regiment 126
The Invaders 130
The Guard 144
All Clear 146
Joining Up 147
Jungle Horticulture 148
Float, Damn You, Float 149
Bribery and Corruption 151
A Troopship in the Tropics 153
To a Comrade in Arms 154
from ffundamental ffolkes 155
Wrong Target 156
'Via Rasella: Marisa, Italy' from Women In War 157
A Visit from the Quality 160
Love and War in the Appenines 161
Invasion Exercise on the Poultry Farm 167
Slapton Sands 169
Aircrew 170
Second Autumn 171
Those Were the Days, My Friend 172
Dabs and Flounders 178
from Women in War 181
Never Try to Be Clever with the Army 182
Military Manoeuvre 183
After the Final Victory 185
The Veterans 195
Across the River and Into the Ritz 198
'Epilogue' from Sword of Honour 202
Modern Mindlessness 1945 Onwards
Rubbish 209
Snowflakes & Sandcastles 209
Indonesian Confrontation 231
from A Message from the Falklands 232
Of Penguins, John Bull's Other Island and a New Model Dictator 236
Epilogue: Robert Capa: Images of War 269
Coda 270
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