A Line in the Sand: Canadians at War in Kandahar by Ray Wiss

By Ray Wiss

In 2007-–08, Dr. Ray Wiss, a former infantry officer, served with the Canadian Forces at ahead working bases in Khandahar's Panjwayi valley, the realm experiencing the main extreme wrestle in Afghanistan. He spent extra time within the strive against sector than the other Canadian healthcare professional, and his profitable first booklet, FOB Doc, used to be the diary of his time “outside the wire” in the course of that journey of duty.

Captain Wiss' event in Afghanistan confident him that this clash used to be an extraordinary instance of an ethical conflict. while requested to come back for a fair longer travel of accountability within the wrestle sector, he with no trouble agreed. once more, he saved a diary, writing with ardour in regards to the efforts, sacrifices and achievements of these Canadians who served with such contrast. Illustrated with over a hundred color photos, A Line within the Sand tells us approximately almost all kinds of soldier battling in Afghanistan: the bomb technician, the engineer, the wrestle medic, the “grunt” in addition to concerning the Afghans, from whom we're likely so diverse but with whom we proportion loads. it's an impassioned insider’s view of the struggle in Afghanistan and a resounding testomony to why it matters.

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The infantry especially had to learn to use their sarissas effortlessly, especially if marching across rivers and rocky terrain, and to run with them in upright and lowered positions. We learn about aspects of the training and drills from a campaign in Illyria that Alexander waged in 335, shortly after he became king (pp. 129–130). Philip would also have arranged for the infantry and cavalry to work seamlessly together, perhaps charging dummy lines of differing lengths and depths to hone their shock-and-awe tactics.

In fact, in 337 Philip II of Macedonia made liberating these betrayed cities one of his main goals in invading Asia. During the Spartan hegemony another city was flexing its muscles: Thebes in Boeotia. The Thebans had a formidable army, including the famed “Sacred Band,” an elite infantry corps of 300 soldiers (150 pairs of lovers, who thus fought all the more ferociously to protect their partners). Viewing Thebes’s military forces as a threat, the Spartans seized the Theban Cadmea (Acropolis) in 382, installed a garrison on it, and exiled 300 Theban citizens.

Likewise Alexander was forced to adapt and extend his duties in Asia, coming to see himself not as a traditional Macedonian warrior king but as King of Asia. More than just episodes from history and the nature of monarchic rule, the whole fabric of Macedonian society was alien to Greeks and so abhorred by them. A Macedonian male was an entirely different animal from his Athenian counterpart, for example, who came of age at 18, was then eligible to attend the Assembly (the main political body, which 16 Greece and Macedonia ­ ebated and voted on domestic and foreign policy), served in the army as d and when required, was eligible for jury service when he turned 30, and— if he came from a well-to-do family—attended symposia (drinking parties) to engage in intellectual discussion before letting his hair down and swapping talk for sex with the ever-present courtesans.

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