ILLUSTRATIONS: SHARIF TARABAY
Clockwise from top left: Victoria Cross recipients Philip Eric Bent, Tommy Holmes, Christopher O'Kelly, George Mullin, George Pearkes, James Peter Robertson, Collin Barron, Cecil Kinross, Hugh McKenzie and Robert Shankland.
The battle for the Belgian crossroads village of Passchendaele was one of the bloodiest battles of all time. Winston Churchill called it “a forlorn expenditure of valour and life without equal in futility.” The sad part is that it never would have happened if Canadian Lieutenant-General Sir Arthur Currie had been successful in having it called off.
In just 12 days—from Oct. 26 to Nov. 6, 1917—the Canadian Corps suffered nearly 16,000 casualties, and all for a cont...