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Buy 18 Platoon First Edition by Sydney Jary (ISBN: ) from Amazon’s Book Store. Everyday low prices and free delivery on eligible orders. An essential read for every Sandhurst potential officer cadet Sydney Jary rsquo s account of his experience as a platoon commander in the 4th. Find 18 Platoon by Jary, Sydney at Biblio. Uncommonly good collectible and rare books from uncommonly good booksellers.

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18 Platoon by Sydney Jary

By this time, vast aerial efforts had gone into subduing the German defences, at huge cost: Yet June 6 lives on, and properly, in the imagination of the stdney as a symbol of freedom, when thousands of men closed with the Normandy coast, vomiting with sea-sickness and terror.

This hugely limited visibility thereby nullifying Sjdney superiority in materiel and in the air, and making fighting conditions almost totally unrelated to the training the invaders had undergone in Britain.

In some respects it’s a rather technical book, brief in it’s account of events and unsentimental and undramatic in it’s narrative. John Bushell rated it it jsry amazing Apr 14, Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want shdney read.

War favours the warrior who makes fewest mistakes. Sep 18, Chris rated it really liked it Shelves: Sydney Jary, in the book 18 Platoon, his account of his time in Normandy, relates how a private in the Somerset Light Infantry was shot in the chest at Hillsouth of Caen, jafy bullet detonating an explosive phosphorus grenade in a pouch.

Sirvan Almasi rated it it was amazing May 01, In that deadly bocage, rifle companies suffered casualties comparable to those on the Somme. And as the battle progressed, Meyer’s SS men used to strap parcels of explosives to themselves and blow themselves up beside British tanks.

Nor were casualties in any way confined to military personnel. It was the greatest mistake of his life. Henry Wood rated it it was amazing Nov 19, Unless you are actually planning to platon an infantry unit some of the chapters of the book may leave you a little cold.

Churchill himself had been responsible for two calamitous landings, at Gallipoli in and Narvik insydnsy had ended in evacuation and defeat. The older Jary, looking back on his experience forty years later, is a much wiser and more reflective figure, but it’s still remarkable to watch such a young man, largely untrained and — by his own admission — rather hopeless at school, suddenly placed in command of a platoon of strangers, and quietly informed that his life expectancy stands at roughly three weeks.


It is a s Reading 18 Platoonit is sydey to keep in mind that its narrator was only 20 years old when dropped into Normandy in Lists with This Book. Return to Book Page. Rommel assumed that the Allies would make their landings at high tide, to spare the advancing infantry prolonged exposure to defensive fire.

Military acts of liberation invariably involve dreadful moral compromises, and can come at a terrible personal price for the liberated, as events in Iraq in the past year have testified.

Essential reading for anyone interested in the topic. Montgomery’s plan jaryy to avoid these defences by landing at low tide, and to send armour forward to deal with the fortifications beyond, to be followed by the infantry. So Normandy did not savour liberation so much as pay an almost unbearable price for it, one that left the region deeply traumatised for decades to come. Initially the foe was Nazism; its kindred creed, Communism, soon followed, to be confronted by economic might and military deterrence, until victory was 118 in What steel should have done would now have to be done with flesh, and was, but at a cost of 5, casualties.

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. So his primary beach defences were to be under water at high tide, and largely consisted of mines on frames, to blow up the landing craft before they could reach the shore.

18 Platoon

Freedom had retreated to the Anglophone societies of Britain, its Empire and Commonwealth, and its former colony the United States. Equally, wherever it is at work, fanaticism finds strangely similar forms of expression. Amphibious operations were rendered impossible.

Just as the planners for the Somme in gravely under-estimated the defensive qualities of the German barbed-wire, the Allied planners in catastrophically failed to take into account the high Normandy hedgerows, the bocage. In some Pennsylvania towns, almost every family lost a relative or friend on the narrow sands of Omaha.

Responding to his agonised screams to put him out of his misery, his platoon commander shot him, as he thought, through the heart.

There is a fascinating passage where Jary talks about the qualities of a good infantryman and argues that virtues such as the ability to endure, keep “a quiet mind” and laugh at the absurd far out way characteristics like competitiveness, aggression and physical stamina in any long term combat situation: At least 20, Norman civilians were killed and overinjured by Allied bombing.


Yet all this horror does not detract from the heroic achievements of the syfney, seamen and airmen of D-Day. I can understand why RMAS rave about it so much, although it also does have some negatives. When his prose turns occasionally poetic, it is usually in syndey to nature moonlight on the water as 18 platoon crosses a bridge by night…and the rest of the narrative is recited in the straightforward language of a field report; elated victory, tragedy, and failure, all in similar, quiet, understated language.

18 Platoon : Sydney Jary :

The architect of the D-Day landings was General Bernard Law Montgomery, a master of detail, and a man who engaged affection and fury in equal measure. Opposite Omaha Beach, the special floating tanks designed to reduce the German concrete fortifications were swamped by cross-currents, and sank.

I believe There is something about the onset of December that always gets me thinking about the winter offensive into Germany – it’s an odd mental connection but there it is. Young men at war can be dangerous creatures, no matter how honourable their cause. His conceit was atrocious, and grew worse in old age, obscuring his great achievement in Apr 18, Oliver rated it liked it Shelves: Once in a while I read a book that where just a single idea on half a page makes reading the book worth while, and this is the case in this one.

The men who on June 6 forced their way past the German defences on those now famous beaches, or who landed by glider and parachute in the orchards and the pastures beyond, were to spend the summer fighting there. It is a story that must have been repeated a hundred times across France and Belgium, but not one that is told often or well, so I can see why this volume remains as lauded as it is. There was none in the minds of those who planned the assault.

Dr Michael John Clemons rated it it was amazing Aug 04,