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  • Originally published 03/31/2014

    “Not all First World War soldiers were heroes,” says historian

    In a new book, Challenge of Battle: The Real Story of the British Army in 1914, Adrian Gilbert reexamines the opening campaigns in France and Belgium, and, amongst other things, notes instances where British troops broke and ran from the field of battle.

  • Originally published 07/21/2013

    When Does a War End for the Veterans?

    Bruce Chadwick

    Heroes Shakespeare and Company 70 Kemble Street Lenox, MassachusettsWhen does a war end for the men who fought it?That’s the question in French writer Gerald Sibleyras play Heroes, translated by Tom Stoppard, which just opened at Shakespeare and Company in the Berkshires. The setting is 1959 somewhere in France. Three veterans of World War One, Phillipe, Gustave and Henri, reminisce about the war every day on the veranda of the Old Soldiers home where they live. Henry has been there 25 years and Phillipe ten. Gustave arrived six months ago.Sibleyras’ fine play seems slow moving and tepid at first. It appears to be the story of three perfectly harmless and lovable old men spending their golden years glorying in their wartime heroism long ago, cheered by all. As the minutes slip way, though, you see them as badly damaged individuals whose problems grow as each day passes. They don’t do anything well except re-fight World War One and act as much as soldiers as they can remember.