THE INDIAN EMPIRE AT WAR
“FROM JIHAD TO VICTORY”, THIS NEW HISTORY OF INDIA’S CONTRIBUTION TO WWI SHEDS LIGHT ON OFTEN-FORGOTTEN SACRIFICE AND HEROISM
Author: George Morton-jack Publisher: Little, Brown Price: £25.00
The considerable contribution made by India to the British war effort during both world wars has sadly been neglected by historians. Thankfully, in recent years a number of new studies have attempted to address this glaring gap in the current literature, some of which have proved fascinating regarding our ‘forgotten heroes’. However, historian George Mortonjack has produced what can fairly be described as one of the most interesting and informative works yet published on the Indian Army during World War I.
Basing his research on material from archives across a dozen countries and previously unpublished veteran interviews, the author sets the scene by examining the hugely multicultural Indian Army as it was just prior to the outbreak of hostilities in 1914. Here Morton-jack dispels some of the myths that have endured over the past 100 years and offers some facts that even many military historians of the period may be unaware of. Interestingly, he describes how the Indian Army was celebrated as loyal heroes of the British Empire from 1919 to the 1930s, thus not always being as forgotten as we think today.
The majority of the book, of course, focuses on the Indian Army during World War I, and in particular the Middle East, where it fought against the Ottoman Empire. Morton-jack’s use of little-known accounts from Indian Army veterans, however, is what really brings the book to life, offering the reader a rare and unique glimpse into the personal ordeals, hopes and even joys experienced by the Indian soldier at war.
“ONE OF THE MOST INTERESTING & INFORMATIVE WORKS YET PUBLISHED ON THE INDIAN ARMY DURING WORLD WAR I”