The Gallipoli Campaign is generally viewed as a disastrous failure of the First World War, inadequately redeemed by the heroism of the soldiers and sailors who were involved in the fighting. But before the first landings were made, the concept of a strike at the Dardanelles seemed to offer a short cut to victory in a war without prospect of end. The venture, and what was required of the men undertaking it who were enduring heavy casualties, eminently deserve reconsideration in the centenary year of the campaign. What fuelled and what drained morale during the eight months of extraordinary human endeavour? A balanced evaluation of the Gallipoli gamble, and of the political and military leadership, are the challenging tasks which Peter Liddle sets himself in his new study of the campaign and the experience of the men who served in it.
Dr Peter Liddle is a leading historian of the First World War and has written on the Second. He has concentrated on the personal experience of the men and women who took part in these conflicts. He founded the Liddle Collection, a repository of documents and memorabilia connected to the First World War, housed in the Brotherton Library, the University of Leeds (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/University of Leeds), and his archival work on the 1939-45 war is incorporated in the Second World War Experience Centre at Walton, near Wetherby. His many books include The 1916 Battle of the Somme, The Great War 1914-1945: Lightning Strikes Twice (joint editor), Captured Memories 1900-1918, Captured Memories 1930-1945 and The Soldier's War 1914-1918.