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How animals have helped mankind in time of war.

Pigeons carrying vital messages to and from the beleaguered city during the Siege of Paris; horses and mules struggling through miles of fetid mud to bring ammunition to the front in the Great War; dogs sniffing out mines for the British invasion force in the Second World War - countless brave animals have played their part in the long, cruel history of war. Some have won medals for gallantry - like G.I. Joe, the American pigeon who saved 100 British lives in Italy, and Rob, the black and white mongrel who made over twenty parachute jumps with the SAS. Too many others have died abandoned, in agony and alone, after serving their country with distinction. Jilly Cooper has here written a tribute to the role of animals in wartime. It is a tragic and horrifying story - yet it has its lighter moments too: a hilarious game of musical chairs played on camels during the Desert Campaign; and the budgie who remarked, when carried from a bombed-out East End tenement, 'This is my night out'. This is a vivid and unforgettable record of man's inhumanity to animals, but also an astonishing story of courage, intelligence, devotion and resilience.

Reviews

I laughed out loud - and had a little cry

Sunday Telegraph

Fascinating and by no means without humour

Glasgow Herald

Cooper brings her considerable gifts to a neglected area of military history

Horse and Hound

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Formats & editions

  • Animals In War
    Jilly Cooper

    Paperback

    9780552990912

    April 15, 2000

    Corgi

    224 pages

    RRP $19.99

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    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781409031901

    January 4, 2011

    Transworld Digital

    224 pages

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