01 August 2009

Latest Issue of Canadian Military History

I've received and read the Spring 2009 issue (vol.18, no.2) of Canadian Military History from the good folks at the Laurier Centre for Military Strategic and Disarmament Studies at Wilfrid Laurier University. This issue includes the following articles:

Brennan, Patrick, "'Completely Worn Out by Service in France': Combat Stress and Breakdown among Senior Officers in the Canadian Corps";

Brown, Eric and Tim Cook, "The Hendershot Brothers in the Great War";

Evans, Ivor, "Comparison of British and American Areas in Normandy in terms of Fire Support and its Effects (AORG Report No.292);

Manulak, Michael W., "Equal Partners, Though Not of Equal Strength: The Military Diplomacy of General Charles Foulkes and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization";

Ridler, Jason S., "From Nagasaki to Toronto: Omond Solandt and the Defence Research Board's Early Vision of Atomic Warfare, 1945-1947"; and

Sarty, Roger and Bruce Ellis, "Connaught Battery and the Defence of the Atlantic Coast, 1906-1941".

I was particularly interested in Patrick Brennan's piece on combat stress amongst the senior leaders of the Canadian Corps. (This is not a comment on the other articles, just a reflection of my particular myopic interests). Study senior personnel and staff officers long enough and it's often apparent that the effects of war can be just as psychologically damaging to them as to other, more continuously "front line" personnel, even if the opportunities for physical injury are less common. Within my own research on the 38th Battalion, CEF, I've long found it amazing that Lieutenant-Colonel Cameron Macpherson Edwards, commanding officer of the 38th, lasted as long as he did. He took over the reins of the battalion in Canada in January 1915 and commanded the 38th in the field from its deployment in August 1916 to September 1918 (less time wounded, on leave, or acting as brigadier), by which time he was 37 years old. On the other hand, Major Thain Wendell MacDowell, one of Canada's Victoria Cross recipients, did not fare as well psychologically, his war ending in 1917 when battlefield trauma accumulated beyond the breaking point.

Unfortunately, there was no "electronic resources" piece by me in this edition of CMH. That was my fault, as I simply did not get someting submitted in time. I should make the next issue.

Oh, by the way, many thanks for the e-mails I've received since my last post welcoming me back and offering assistance.

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