Guy Sajer authors this autobiographical account of his participation as an infantry soldier during World War II. Sajer is of mixed nationality—his father is French and his mother is German. Sajer faces compulsory conscription and instead volunteers for the Luftwaffe but fails to pass the required entrance examinations. He is then sent to a transportation unit and learns to load and drive trucks. Sajer also meets several other men who will become his close companions throughout the remainder of the war, including Hals. His unit faces considerable difficulty in managing to remain supplied itself and the transportations situation—grave to begin with—is seriously hampered by the freezing temperatures and constant snow.
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Jan 07, Joseph rated it it was amazing Recommended to Joseph by: Gerry Shelves: military-biography , stuff-that-doesn-t-fit-elsewhere There is no such thing as a just war. The concept of just war is something theologians like Augustine or Thomas Aquinas or academics argue. When it comes to real war and actual fighting theologians and academics are as useless as tits on a boar hog. Killing others and being killed is humankind at its most primitive.
Fighting a war is deadly serious. Discipline, courage and a will to win are critical to success in war. Finding the guts to kill or be killed and to endure almost unbelievable hardship in unbelievable circumstances are too often absolutes for those who must fight. In a word it was brutal. Sajer saw many of his fellow soldiers killed in ways that I will not repeat except to say that there is enough real recounting of how people died to last me several lifetimes.
My dad lost his best friend on Guadalcanal. He was killed either by machine gun fire or artillery because his unit was not where they were supposed to be. The Eastern front was a killing ground, The Germans lost roughly 1. Outside of the Taiping Rebellion and Cultural Revolution in China, I am unaware of casualties this numerous in a single front. Russian losses were greater. They overwhelmed me. Sajer tells me how they died. Ah, will just say that even with my 27 years in the Air Force and I cannot tell you today which side my unit patch went on.
These attacks on Sajer are pure unadulterated crap. A real soldier, a special ops guy takes the school house REMF to task at the link below. Simply, to read about what battle is like, what to expect and to find out just how bad it can get.
Guy Sajer Quotes
Translated from the French by Lily Emmet. Glenn Gray Credit To preserve these articles as they originally appeared, The Times does not alter, edit or update them. Occasionally the digitization process introduces transcription errors or other problems; we are continuing to work to improve these archived versions. Apart from num bers of men and loss of life, the ferocity, inhuman cruelties, indiffer ence to suffering and mass slaughter on the part of the two most con scienceless dictators of modern times made the warfare nearly an absolute in human enmity. His book is painful to get through.
The Forgotten Soldier Quotes
Personal narrative[ edit ] Sajer wrote that The Forgotten Soldier was intended as a personal narrative, based on his recollections of an intensely chaotic period in German military history, not an attempt at a serious historical study of World War II: "I never had the intention to write a historical reference book; rather I wrote about my innermost emotional experiences as they relate to the events that happened to me in the context of the Second World War. That is why I would like that this book may not be used under [any] circumstances as a strategic or chronological reference. Glenn Gray in But it is also difficult to put down and is worth the cost in horror that reading it entails. Some of the details Sajer mentions appear to be incorrect, while other are impossible to verify due to the lack of surviving witnesses and documents. Edwin Kennedy wrote that this error was "unimaginable" for a former member of such an elite German unit.