Monday, January 28, 2013




Montgomery battles on, Rommel bows out

A piper of the Gordon Highlanders plays from a Valentine tank as it drives into Tripoli past crowds of cheering locals, 26 January 1943.

When he first stepped on the stage he told us to cough and blow our noses and then be silent. We would later on be permitted to cough at intervals. The pride he showed in the Eighth Army – ‘my army, my soldiers’ – just escaped self-flattery. His aggressiveness in the field was carried into his talk. It allowed of no modesty, mock or real. He was enthusiastic about what had been accomplished but only in so far as it was a stepping-stone to what he now intended to do.