The following is so clear and poignant, I think it deserves to be read by everyone. What I do here is a hobby, a diversion. It’s part strategy game, part artisan-craft, all geek. In no way am I trying to trivialize or glorify the real thing. War may be a regrettable necessity at times, but it is always ugly.
Military censorship and a desire not to worry loved ones at home kept most troops from disclosing the strains and hardships they faced in battle. But when they heard stories of war fatigue on the home front or sensed that the public did not fully grasp the enormity of combatants’ and civilians’ suffering, a spark of frustration could emerge in correspondence home. “Every time you hear somebody say that the war will be over soon,” one soldier wrote to his wife in May 1944—a full sixteen months before hostilities ceased—”look…
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