Trench life

The Great War took more than 600,000 Canadians from all parts of the country and put them in uniform. The transition from civilian to soldier was not easy, and everyone had to learn much about military procedures and culture—uniforms, ranks, insignia, rations, weaponry, terminology—and, most important, adjust to the presence of aggression, violence and...
  • Pounding Towards Falaise: Army, Part 104

    January 21, 2013 by Terry Copp
    Operation Totalize was the first major action carried out by First Canadian Army in the Second World War and a great deal of attention was paid to documenting every aspect of the Aug. 8-10, 1944,...
  • Montgomery’s Blunder: Army, Part 103

    December 5, 2012 by Terry Copp
    In July 1944, the German Army concentrated more panzer divisions in the open fields south of Caen than in any other sector on the eastern or western front. Relying on infantry and artillery to meet the Soviet Union’s summer offensive and to check the Americans...
  • Mayhem In Normandy: Army, Part 102

    October 23, 2012 by Terry Copp
    By the third week of July 1944 the senior German officers in the west feared their armies were on the verge of collapse. Battle casualties totalled more than 116,000 men and just 10,000 replacements had arrived to sustain combat strength. The loss of 2,722 officers...
  • Every soldier is affected by the strain and violence of combat. Most learn to cope or even adapt, some become stronger and tougher, but others develop immediate or delayed reactions that can be psychologically disabling. Historically these have been labelled shell shock, combat fatigue, battle...
  • Ferocity and Futility: Army, Part 100

    May 22, 2012 by Terry Copp
    Operation Spring, 2nd Canadian Corps’ second attempt to secure Verrières Ridge, began in the dark during the early hours of July 25, 1944.Operation Spring, 2nd Canadian Corps’ second attempt to secure Verrières Ridge, began in the dark during the early hours of July 25, 1944.Operation...
  • Chaos In The Dark: Army, Part 99

    March 22, 2012 by Terry Copp
    General Bernard Montgomery’s “armoured blitzkrieg,” Operation Goodwood, and its Canadian component, Operation Atlantic, ended in rain and confusion on July 20, 1944. The next day, Montgomery and his army commander, Lieutenant-General Sir Miles Dempsey, met to consider their options. News of the failed assassination attempt...