Otterman speaks... (2003-2007)
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Otterman speaks...

Cycling, macintosh, natural history and life in Singapore - Archives

List of Categories : travel * museum * cycling * Singapore Naturalist * science * kakis * mangroves * movies * mac and the internet * meow * NUS * life in Singapore * lit * world *

Sun 21 Dec 2003

Band of Brothers

Category : world

On Saturday night Channel surprised me with the famous textbook 'assault on a fixed position' - the gripping scene from Episode 2 of HBO's Band of Brothers.

Easy Company takes out four guns in the German artillery firing onto seaborne infantry trying to take Utah Beach. The courageous and extremely well executed manoeuver is still demonstrated as a classic example at West Point. It took my breath away.

One of the soldiers later said they thought they could not die that day. In fact one of them laid down covering fire from a very exposed position. But this happened early in their war, and they wised up with time.

The series is an excellent one; IMDB voters gave it a 9.5 rating, and I myself voted 10. I read relevant chapters in the book just before watching VCD episodes earlier this year. That's a helpful way to do it.

These men were amongst the fittest soldiers in the US army. But they were also an exceptional group bound by a very special bond. The book's author, Steven Ambrose, has written many historical war novels and interviewed lots of soldiers. He commented on the special camaraderie amongst the survivors of 'E' company, 506th Regiment, 101st Airborne.

Each episode opens with interview clips with the some of the surviving soldiers.

When the war in Europe was finally over, they sat around, dreading the call to be shipped to the Pacific theatre. The battle zone there was considered a relative nightmare after Europe. They were certainly relieved when the atomic bombs brought the Pacific war to a close.

I learnt more about the Pacific War when I started reading reading books like William Manchester's Goodbye, Darkness and the more recent Hell in the Pacific. I'll put up a list eventually.

Posted at 6:45PM UTC by N. Sivasothi | permalink | , .