Soldiers: A History of Men in Battle

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[edit] General Information

War Documentary hosted by Frederick Forsyth, published by BBC in 1985 - English narration

[edit] Cover

Image: Soldiers-A-History-of-Men-in-Battle-Cover.jpg

[edit] Information

Wars are conflicts between states and societies. Soldiers are the human means through which wars are fought. Soldiers, the major BBC series on the history of warfare, tells its story through the different types of soldiers who have fought each other since warfare began. "War changes men and it changes Man; it alters our world and our history, our political systems, our social attitudes, our perceptions and our moralities. By showing how men go into it, pass through it and emerge from it, 'Soldiers' tells us something we need to know." - Frederick Forsyth A BBC-TV Production in association with RKO Pictures New York and ABC Australia

[edit] The Face of Battle

The face of battle known to the knight was one seen at close hand, often at arm's length from the enemy. The onset of mass-produced weapons confronts the soldier of the industrial world to apprehend danger through his nerve-endings, guessing at the risks he runs and sustaining his courage not by seeking to fill his enemy with fear greater than his own - since the enemy is unseen - but by denying his own fear to himself through an act of will. In the first episode Frederick Forsyth takes the battlefield of Waterloo as a vantage point to illustrate how, over the centuries, the experience of battle has changed for soldiers in combat.

[edit] The Cavalry

Some four thousand years ago, when somewhere on the egde of the great sea of grass that fills the plain of Central Asia, man first tamed the horse and broke it to his will. It was the beginning of a relationship that would transform warfare, and so trade, agriculture and politics. Horseman was the master of the battlefield over much of the world from 1000 B.C. until the end of the Middle Ages.

[edit] Gunner

The great guns of sixteenth-century toppled the castles from which mounted warriors had exercised their power througout the Middle Ages. The development of the big gun evolved from cannon to Howitzer and self-propelled guns. Episode also examines the effect of big guns on conflicts such as World War I, the Falklands War and Vietnam.

[edit] Infantry

Here we meet the infantryman, from the great empires of the ancient world to the Roman legionary tramping with sword, shield and spear along the dusty roads of Europe; we follow him down the centuries to the Marine truding across the bleak moors of the Falklands. How the infantryman's life, in some ways has remained the same since Roman times, but also how the weapons have developed.

[edit] Tank

This episode examines the increasingly important role played by tanks in battle. In the Second World War tanks made a military revolution as dynamic as that imposed by the cavalry three tousand years earlier. The success and failure of tanks has depended on the principles of mobility, protection and firepower.

[edit] Air Power

The emergence of air power came as a direct result of World War I, the horrifying casualties of that conflict resulted in a search for a means to avoid the costly stalemate in the trenches. Since then air power has played an ever-expanding role in warfare. This episode studies the importance of air power, in the roles of both transport and surveillance.

[edit] Casualty

For many a soldier - be he lancer, legionary, Panzergrenadier or parachutist, hoplite or horse archer - there comes a moment when luck runs out, and he fails to dodge the pilum, walks into a machine gun's beaten zone, or is framed by the sniper's sight like a fly in a spider's web. Suddenly he is defined by that most bland of collective euphemisms: he is a casualty. This part looks at the treatment of casualties on the battle field as well as the hardship of being a prisoner of war.

[edit] Sinews of War

The armies of 17th century Europe resembled nothing so much as huge maggots gnawing their way across the face of the land, leaving a trail of famine and destruction behind them. The technological advances of the 19th century influenced logistics as much as they did tactics. Now we are looking at the logistical problems of supplying front line men with food, arms and transportation - how this has been achieved from the growth of armies in 17th century to the present day.

[edit] Fighting Spirit

What provides the will to fight? Factors like group cohesion, unit allegiance and pride, ideology and patriotism are elements of creating and maintaining the fighting spirit of men brought together to serve under the one banner.This episode looks at army training throughout history using same mix of persuation coercion, of tradition, comradeship and discipline.

[edit] Commander

Commanders are the focal point for penetrating the fog of war, and instilling in soldiers the will to win against any opponent. The training and responsibilities involved in being a commander are examined in this episode.

[edit] Irregular

The irregular appears in many guises. He may be a peasant or townsman, or even a specially trained member of a regular army, using the irregular tactics of subversion, ambush, demolitions and dirty tricks. The history of the irregular forces including guerillas and the special army units formed to combat them.

[edit] Engineer

A military engineer has to perform a variety of tasks during the battle, constructing and breaching trenches and laying or clearing land mines. This episode explores the role of the sapper, the military engineer who leads the way, as he clears a path for the army.

[edit] Experience of War

For centuries the act of killing was direct and personal, accomplished at close range: it may even be so on a modern battlefield. In last programme of series, Frederick Forsyth looks at the experience of being at war with reminiscences of many ex-soldiers.

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[edit] Technical Specs

Video Codec: XviD ISO MPEG-4
Video Bitrate: 1920 kbps
Video Resolution: 704x528
Video Aspect Ratio: 1.333:1
Frames Per Second: 29.970
Audio Codec: 0x2000 (Dolby AC3) AC3
Audio Bitrate: 224kb/s CBR 48000 Hz
Audio Streams: 2
Audio Languages: english
RunTime Per Part: 48:17.023
Number Of Parts: 13
Part Size: 715 MB / average
Ripped by: DocFreak08

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