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15 décembre 2020 à 10 h 29 min #17904
Over The Top
by Arthur Guy Empey
- Release date: October 5, 2001
- Publisher: University Press of the Pacific
- ISBN: 9780898756173 (0898756170)
- Format: paperback
- Genres: history, war, biography, memoir, historical, classics
- Author: Arthur Guy Empey
- Language: english
About The Book
Excerpt: …of the trench. One dead German was lying on his back, with a rifle sticking straight up in the air, the bayonet of which was buried to the hilt in his chest. Across his feet lay a dead English soldier with a bullet hole in his forehead. This Tommy must have been killed just as he ran his bayonet through the German. Rifles and equipment were scattered about, and occasionally a steel helmet could be seen sticking out of the mud. At one point, just in the entrance to a communication trench, was a stretcher. On this stretcher a German was lying with a white bandage around his knee, near to him lay one of the stretcher-bearers, the red cross on his arm covered with mud and his helmet filled with blood and brains. Close by, sitting up against the wall of the trench, with head resting on his chest, was the other stretcher-bearer. He seemed to be alive, the posture was so natural and easy, but when I got closer, I could see a large, jagged hole in, his temple. The three must have been killed by the same shell-burst. The dugouts were all smashed in and knocked about, big square-cut timbers splintered into bits, walls caved in, and entrances choked. Tommy, after taking a trench, learns to his sorrow, that the hardest part of the work is to hold it. In our case this proved to be so. The German artillery and machine guns had us taped (ranged) for fair; it was worth your life to expose yourself an instant. Don’t think for a minute that the Germans were the only sufferers, we were clicking casualties so fast that you needed an adding machine to keep track of them. Did you ever see one of the steam shovels at work on the Panama Canal, well, it would look like a hen scratching alongside of a Tommy “digging in” while under fire, you couldn’t see daylight through the clouds of dirt from his shovel. After losing three out of six men of our crew, we managed to set up our machine gun. One of the legs of the tripod was resting on the chest of a half-buried body. When…
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