The Death of Glory

Written by Robin Neillands
Review by Mike Ashworth

1915 was a tough year for the British in France. The battles fought by the British army were either disasters or inconclusive; but the real reason for despair was that this war, entered into for the liberation of Belgium, has lost its moral argument and had descended into bloody, senseless slaughter. The Death of Glory is an account of the situation on the Western Front in 1915. The battles of Neuve Chapelle, Second Ypres, Aubers Ridge and Loos are covered in detail in a factual, but informative, easy to read way. The role of the military leadership is discussed in detail and Mr. Neillands challenges the commonly held view that the British army were “lions led by donkeys.” The book is well researched, and while the arguments he puts forward are cogent and plausible, this book is balanced. The deficiencies of the High Command, as well as the political decisions which led to the carnage of 1915, are discussed fully. Readers must decide for themselves whether his argument is sustainable. This is a thought provoking and highly readable book.