British Infantryman in the Far East 1941-45 by Alan Jeffreys

By Alan Jeffreys

This identify makes a speciality of the adventure, strategies, education and guns of the British soldier from the autumn of Malaya and Singapore until eventually the Reconquest of Burma. It takes an in depth examine jungle war education in India and the resultant motion in Burma, tracing the advance of strategies and doctrine: this shaped the root for the victories within the Arakan and the battles of Kohima and Imphal. The soldier's view of India, the leisure to be had on depart, nutrition rationing and different offers akin to cigarettes, the advent of the forces newspaper SEAC, and the scientific difficulties of malaria are all explored intimately.

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In one overwhelming sense this was true: it established the 'Protestant Ascendancy' in the land which was to last for 270 years. The confiscations ofland to pay the expeditionary force, and to repay those who had lent money to put down the rising of 1641, meant that the proportion ofland owned by the Catholics fell from 59 to 20 per cent. When an Irish Parliament met again, in 1661, it had become an almost wholly Protestant body instead of (as until 1641) having an important minority of Catholics.

They had the same hasty temper, extrovert personality, unbudgeable attachment to their respective principles and fine eloquence, deployed without much reference to political realities. Hesilrige also spoke passionately for his country's liberties, but he could apparently only conceive of them as being served by himself and his colleagues in the purged House. In particular, he bitterly resented attempts by the army to put pressure upon them. Nonetheless, during the winter of 1652-3 confrontation was postponed by the apparent readiness of the Parliament to dissolve itself.

A similar record of prolonged hesitation characterised the Parliament's attempts to settle the future government of the country. The army had created it to be an interim regime, and the longer that it sat, the more it would appear to the nation at large to be nothing more than a selfseeking oligarchy. The draft Agreement of the People, in December 1648, had mandated it to dissolve as soon as it had provided for an electoral system of 300 seats, all distributed on the basis of population. Of these seats 14 per cent would represent boroughs, and the rest counties, reversing the traditional system whereby the great majority represented boroughs, which were commonly more vulnerable to manipulation by patrons.

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