AIRFIELDS AND AIRMEN : SOMME (Battleground Europe) by Michael O'Connor

By Michael O'Connor

Following at the good fortune of Airfields and Airmen of Ypres, the writer turns his recognition to the main mythical area of the British attempt in international struggle I, the Somme. From 1916 to 1918 the British and German armies have been locked in a dangerous fight right here, whereas the Royal Flying Corps and the Imperial German Air carrier flew overhead. firstly appearing as scouts and artillery spotters, the ever extra subtle plane turned tools of battle themselves, undertaking lethal clash a long way above the deadlocked armies less than. This new quantity makes use of the Battleground Europe layout of maps and then-and-now illustrations to hide all of the airfields, crash websites and components linked to the devices, battles and person aces of the aerial clash of worldwide conflict I. insurance additionally comprises French activities, and some American devices that served within the zone close to the tip of the conflict.

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There was nothing in Germany directly comparable to Marinetti's famous Futurist Manifesto which hailed war as a creative force of the highest order. The enthusiasm of the Italian Futurists for 21 22 Wolfgang J. 5 Nonetheless, many works of art in Germany depicted war with a sort of involuntary fascination. 6 The message of these artists did not convey any enthusiasm for war but was characterized for the most part by a sort of heroic fatalism. The pre-war work of Ludwig Meidner, for example, was full of grim depictions of wholesale violence, destruction, war and catastrophe to which the individual is helplessly exposed.

Likewise Hermann Hesse's and Heinrich Mann's attempts to win the German intellectual elite to a more discretionary position on the war and to keeping aloof from nationalist propaganda had little effect. Instead they induced Thomas Mann to argue all over again that the war was being fought to defend German 'culture' (or the intellectual tradition symbolized by Fichte, Schopenhauer, Hegel, Wagner and Nietzsche) against the stupefying consequences of the supposedly shallow ideas of western 'civilization', in respect of what was considered to be French egalitarian rationalism.

The duty of schoolchildren is to be obedient, hardworking, to prepare a sound future for themselves . . '1 The teachers' professional journal, the Revue de Venseignement primaire, compared schoolwork even more straightforwardly to action on the battlefield: 'To work, young friends! '3 Directly in the tradition of civic instruction that had been central to French state primary school education since the 1880s, numerous directives delivered the same message and established a comparable role for education in wartime.

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